The 2019 Mazda CX-5 is offered with front-wheel or all-wheel drive in several trim levels: Sport, Touring, Grand Touring, Grand Touring Reserve, and Signature. The first three are front-wheel drive and powered by a 2.5L inline 4-cylinder engine with 187 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque, which is mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trims come with standard all-wheel drive and are powered by a turbocharged 2.5L borrowed from the larger CX-9. On 93-octane fuel, it produces 250 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque, while 87-octane will yield 227 horsepower--still plenty of oomph to propel the CX-5 quickly. It, too, is paired with a 6-speed automatic and has an EPA-estimated return of 24 combined mpg.
The CX-5 manages to feel balanced, responsive and sprightly, even with its somewhat taller seating position. This is thanks to a responsive electric-boost rack-and-pinion power steering system and Mazda's G-Vectoring Control Plus, which improves steering response by altering engine output to change the dynamics of the CX-5 in corners. All of this makes the CX-5 one of the best-handling compact utility vehicles.
The CX-5 is also versatile. In all versions of the CX-5, the back seats are split 20/40/40 and fold nearly flat. Liftover height is low, and the resulting cargo floor is continuous, which makes it easy to pack larger pieces of weekend cargo.
Sport models include a long list of standard features such as LED headlights, a 7.0-inch color dashboard display with Mazda's fancy Commander knob, a second USB port, G-Vectoring Control and Smart City Brake Support, Mazda's low-speed automated-emergency-braking system. Also standard on Sport models are items such as Bluetooth, cruise control, keyless entry, push-button ignition, 17-inch aluminum wheels, and power windows and door locks, factors to keep in mind when comparing the CX-5 against less expensive competitors that lack some of that equipment.
The Touring model adds much more popular equipment, such as 19-inch wheels, a rear-seat armrest, a rearview camera, steering-wheel audio controls, upgraded upholstery and a 6-speaker sound system with 5.8-inch touch-screen interface, Bluetooth hands-free calling and audio, HD Radio, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, SMS text-messaging capability and Pandora compatibility. The system also gives rear-seat passengers a pair of USB ports, a fold-down center armrest, and A/C vents between the front seats. Safety-wise, the trim adds blind-spot monitoring, active lane assist, adaptive cruise control, rain-sensing wipers, and rear cross-traffic alert.
Grand Touring models add a lot of equipment that is optional on the Touring, including automatic and adaptive headlights, LED fog lights, heated side mirrors, rain-sensing windshield wipers, a power liftgate and a sunroof. Inside, the Grand Touring has an 8-way power driver's seat, auto-dimming mirrors, a Bose 10-speaker audio system, navigation, leather seat surfaces, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist, higher-speed automatic braking and automatic high-beam control. Stepping up to the Grand Touring Reserve adds the bigger engine.
The new Signature trim includes heated leather seats and a heated steering wheel, ambient LED lighting, wood accents, satin chrome accents, 360-degree camera view, and front and rear parking sensors.
Major factory options are grouped into just a few packages. For the Touring model these include a preferred equipment package that features a Bose 10-speaker audio system, navigation, power moonroof, and power rear liftgate. There is also the i-Activsense package, which includes automatic high-beam control, lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist, radar-based adaptive cruise control, automated emergency braking with a higher speed range, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, automatic headlights and rain-sensing windshield wipers.
A premium package can be added to the Grand Touring and has a windshield de-icer, a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, a 6-way power passenger seat, 2-position driver's memory and a full-color head-up display. There are just a few other port- or dealer-installed options, such as remote engine start, fog lamps, rear parking sensors and roof-rack accessories for kayaks, snowboards and other cargo.
Powerful New Turbocharged Engine Availability
Strong Set Of Safety Features
Full-featured Audio And Infotainment
Excellent Fuel Economy Ratings
The popular Mazda CX-5 returns for 2019 with a new optional turbocharged 2.5-liter engine borrowed from the CX-9, plus new Grand Touring Reserve and luxury Signature trim levels. The engine makes 250 horsepower on premium fuel (227 hp on regular) and is available in Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trims. The CX-5 features new dampers and front suspension geometry, plus Mazda's G-Vectoring Control Plus, which improves steering response by altering engine output to change the dynamics of the vehicle in corners. Finally, Apple CarPlay an Android Auto are now standard on all but the Sport trim.
The 2019 Mazda CX-5 competes with the likes of the Honda CR-V, Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4, and Ford Escape. Even in this crowd, it's one of the sportiest-driving models, with surprisingly good fuel economy ratings, even from its new turbocharged engine. The CX-5 also stands out for offering a great ride quality and a flexible, spacious interior. The CX-5's infotainment system, with Bose sound, is one of the most feature-packed in its competitive set, too, with features such as well-integrated Pandora internet radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.