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Mazda CX-5

$24,350 – $41,000Base MSRP range

The CX-5 is one of the best small SUVs. The 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission make for a responsive and unobtrusive powertrain. Fuel economy of 24 mpg is good but not a standout. Handling is responsive and enjoyable, and the steady, compliant ride is among the best in this class. The cabin is quiet, and interior quality is substantial and looks attractive. Soft-touch surfaces, some detailed stitching, and chrome trim add to the interior ambiance. Both the front and rear seats are comfortable. But there is a learning curve to mastering the infotainment system. Rear and side visibility are a bit compromised. Forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection are standard. A new top trim Signature is available with a stronger turbocharged engine or a 2.2-liter diesel engine.

Should I Buy the Mazda CX-5?

The 2019 CX-5 should be on your short list of compact SUVs, especially if you’re looking for a sporty ride. For 2019, Mazda upped the ante in terms of performance with an available turbocharged engine that delivers brisk acceleration. Test drivers have also been impressed by the CX-5’s interior styling and ample seating space.

Should I Buy a New or Used Mazda CX-5?

The 2019 Mazda CX-5 is part of a generation that debuted for the 2017 model year. For 2018, Mazda added standard blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

The 2019 CX-5 is the first to offer Mazda’s 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that delivers up to 250 horsepower, depending on the type of fuel you use. Other new-for-2019 options include Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a 360-degree parking camera, front and rear parking sensors, and ventilated front seats. Although there are several new options for 2019, the standard features list is largely unchanged. Mazda also introduced the Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trims for 2019. Additionally, a new turbo diesel power plant joined the engine roster for 2019.

Go with the 2019 CX-5 if you’re interested in one of the new optional engine or the latest tech offerings. If you’re content with a base model, consider shopping for a used 2017 CX-5 instead, since it has many of the same features as the 2019. Models from 2017 (and before) cost even less, but they are vastly different than models from the current generation.

How Much Does the Mazda CX-5 Cost?

Starting at $24,350, the 2019 CX-5 has a slightly above-average starting price among compact SUVs. The Touring and the Grand Touring trims start at $26,615 and $30,045, respectively. The high-end Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trims cost $34,870 and $36,890, respectively. All-wheel drive is a $1,400 option for all but the two highest trims, which come standard with it. The all-new CX-5 Signature with the turbo diesel engine starts at $41,000, and it comes standard with all-wheel drive.

Mazda CX-5 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Mazda CX-5 or Honda CR-V?

The 2019 Honda CR-V ranks up there with the CX-5, but it trades sportiness for versatility. The CR-V has a slightly roomier cabin than the Mazda and a larger cargo hold by more than 16 cubic feet. Both SUVs have a similar list of standard features, but the Mazda outshines the Honda when it comes to interior quality. It also has a more powerful engine option and better handling. Choosing between these two SUVs boils down to what you value most: utility or performance. Go for the CR-V if you’re looking for space, or opt for the CX-5 if you want a sportier ride.

Which Is Better: Mazda CX-5 or Subaru Forester?

The Subaru Forester is another high-ranking compact SUV, but it’s designed to appeal to different shoppers than the CX-5. The Forester focuses on safety and comfort while the CX-5 emphasizes performance and interior opulence. The Subaru comes standard with all-wheel drive, which is a rarity for this class. It also has a long list of standard active safety features, including adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist. Though the Forester has poised handling, it’s slow to accelerate on the highway when equipped with the base engine. Choose the SUV that best matches your preferences.