Mazda CX-5 review: Tough and willing
Looking for an affordable crossover SUV that will provide more than simply an affordable means of going about your everyday business? Near the top of your shopping list should be the lots of fun for £22,995 and upwards Mazda CX-5.
This Japanese gem is surprisingly roomy and offers outstanding fuel economy and low emissions – especially if you opt for the tough and willing 2.0-litre diesel engine.
It might not be the quietest car out on the road and some of the trim is a little cheapo but here you don’t just get what you pay for but a lot more besides, so we’d favour that bottom of the rung, but still outstanding, two wheel drive 1.4 litre diesel rendition to help keep your bank balance in the black without having to compromise on sheer driving pleasure.
Should you be flush with cash then £19,395 will take you right to the top of the CX-5 ladder but even the entry-level SE-L will give you front and rear parking sensors, dual-zone air-con, sat/nav with a seven-inch infotainment screen, and automatic lights and wipers.
The CX-5 is a car for all the family, with a light, airy interior that offers more head and legroom than many a far larger vehicle. It’s even more impressive when you lower the rear seat to create a massive load area.
It’s an economical vehicle too in this 2.2-litre oil-burner guise – a tenner’s worth of fuel should buy you around hundred miles of contented monitoring and performance is strong right through the rev range, so there’s not much point opting for the more powerful 173-bhp engine while the two-litre petrol version needs lots of revs to perform as well as our choice.
Out on the road, the road holding and handling proved excellent with firm but compliant suspension settings.
There’s lots of competition out there right now, with Nissan’s Qashqai and the new Renault Kadjar at the head of the baying pack of rivals but the CX-5 should be more than capable of holding its own.