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Mazda CX-5 review

2017 onwards (change model)
Parkers overall rating: 3.4 out of 53.4
” Good to drive, premium interior, needs stronger engines “

At a glance

Price new £31,045 - £43,255
Used prices £9,605 - £32,412
Road tax cost £180 - £570
Insurance group 14 - 27
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Fuel economy 35.3 - 50.4 mpg
Range 493 - 702 miles
Miles per pound 5.1 - 6.4
View full specs for a specific version

Available fuel types

Petrol

Diesel

Pros & cons

PROS
  • Distinctive exterior styling
  • Lots of standard equipment
  • Excellent ride and good handling
CONS
  • Petrol engines lacks low-rev punch
  • Harsh ride on bigger wheels
  • Could be quieter on the motorway

Written by Keith Adams Published: 13 December 2022 Updated: 14 December 2022

Overview

The Mazda CX-5 is of those quietly competent SUVs that sells in healthy numbers, while failing to set the world on fire. But just because it might not be on the top of your shopping list, don’t think you should overlook it – we’ve always rated its interior, handling and ride. And it received the mildest of facelifts in 2022 – blinked? You missed it.

Sadly, there isn’t a plug-in or electric version in sight. But despite that, it’s good to own, comes with a long list of standard equipment and represents a good value alternative to more mainstream rivals.

It really does need to be good in a market packed with so many talented family SUVs. Its main opposition comes from the excellent Volkswagen Tiguan, while there is also the SEAT AtecaSkoda Karoq, and let’s not forget the evergreen Nissan Qashqai and its French half-brother the Renault Kadjar. Finally, the Citroen C5 Aircross, Peugeot 3008 and Vauxhall Grandland put up an impressively comfortable showing.

It’s powered by a range of tried-and-tested engines, and this clearly shows Mazda’s willingness to go against fashion – so there are no small displacement turbo petrols, no hybrids and not a single plug-in in the lineup. You can, however, specify a 2.2-litre diesel, a 2.0-litre petrol, and a 2.5-litre petrol.

Model trims include Newground, Sport and SE-L. The former is a rugged-themed 165hp two-wheel drive model, while Sport is the most popular highlighted by gloss black details, and the standard leather trim has red stitched highlights.

The range is completed with the entry level SE-L  and GT-Sport fully-loaded edition, which extends the engine selection to the 194hp 2.5-litre Skyactiv-G with all-wheel drive, adds supple nappa leather trim in sophisticated dark brown shades with wood accents on the interior, and body-colour exterior trim.

Over the next few pages we’ll be scoring the Mazda CX-5 in 10 key areas to give it a score out of five. They’ll take into account the driving experience, how pleasant the interior is, the practicality on offer and what it’ll cost you.