Roadshow Video Reviews
Mazda can't leave well enough alone, updates 2017 CX-5Messing with success, Mazda massively revises the most fun-to-drive small SUV with a bunch of premium amenities. What could go wrong?
[MUSIC] Mazda CX5 is still a relatively young model. I mean, it only just launched back in 2012, yet here we are only about four and a half years later And we're already on the second generation, this 2017 Mazda CX-5. And in that short amount of time, the CX-5 has become the automaker's best selling model. So now, as it attempts to rebrand itself as a premium Japanese automaker, it only make sense that this [UNKNOWN] child sees every new trick it might as look. Let's hop behind the wheel and see exactly how much more premium the CX5 is. [MUSIC] Now I mentioned that Mazda wants to go more upscale with the CX-5 for this generation and to that end it needs an extensive redesign both outside and especially inside. Gone is the puppy dog face and basic functional interior, replaced by a much more aggressive and structural exterior and an interior that uses better material and has much more visual variety and depth. It's a very nice cabin to sit in. [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO] Now at least on paper, not a whole lot's changed in the engine bay. Mazda still uses the same 2.5 liter Skyactiv engine, it makes about 184 horsepower and is mated with a 6 speed automatic transmission. Now, at least at launch, that's the only engine in transition That's available to the CX-5. Though drivers will have the ability to choose between front and all wheel drive models, and a diesel model will be joining the lineup in late 2017. Now, internally, the 2.5-liter does see tweaks to improve responsiveness and to make the acceleration feel more linear. Though, without a back to back comparison with the previous generations, he'd be hard-pressed to spot any difference Though you may notice that it is more comfortable. Mazda has tweaked the CX-5's ride to make it more compliant over bumps and cracks. But at the same time, it hasn't really sacrificed any of that responsive steering and handling that I really liked about the previous generation. This is thanks to a combination of physical [UNKNOWN] suspension and the addition of Mazda's G vectoring sort of performance stability control system. So when you toss it around the corner it still feels pretty good. [MUSIC] Now if there is a weak spot to the CX-5, it's gonna be the Mazda Connect infotainment system. Now it's pretty bare bones, which works well in a less is more sort of vehicle like the Miata. But if you're gonna sell the CX-5 as a premium car, it's just not gonna cut it. I think that Mazda could solve most of its problems by just putting Android Auto and Apple CarPlay in the dashboard. But they just don't really want to do that. In its favor it's an entertainment system that'll never confuse you with too many options or get you lost in the menu. So it's got that going for it. [MUSIC] If you're not careful, a Mazda engineer might corner you and talk for a half an hour about the various tweaks and changes to seals, and panel gaps, and carpet placement that they did to reduce the amount of noise in the CX-5's cabin. The automaker's taken almost the same obsessive approach that they did with removing grams from the Miata, to quieting down the CX-5's cabin. The end result is that everything looks, feels and, yeah, sounds a whole lot more premium. So bottom line time Pretty much everything that I love about the Mazda CX5, for example the great handling performance, is intact in this new model. It's still one of my favorite compact SUVs. And both inside and out it feels like a very good start to Mazda's new premium ambition. With the exception of Mazda Connect the only part of this package that I still find lacking No? At the rate that they're iterating and refreshing the CX-5, there's still hope that Mazda can get it's act together, maybe even within this generation. [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO]