2013 Mazda CX-5 Review

2013 Mazda CX-5 Review

Agile driving dynamics; stylish design; pretty good fuel economy.


Mediocre navigation and sound systems; no optional engine update.


2013 Mazda CX-5 is a crossover that offers seating for five passengers, adaptive cargo space and comprehensive set of standard safety features. It is a sport inspired, safe and practical vehicle to Zoom-Zoom around in. With its daring styling, fuel efficient engine and engaging experience, the 2013 CX-5 is a good pick for those looking for a sporty, yet thrifty crossover sport utility vehicle. Introducing a feat of engineering originally thought to be impossible: the crossover without compromise. It not only offers confident driving, all-weather capability, versatility, advanced features and spaciousness, but it does so with best highway mpg of any SUV in United States, including hybrids. To make this possible, the company developed and designed a completely new engineering philosophy known as SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY that reimagines every component for working together in unprecedented harmony. More than a compact crossover sport utility vehicle, the CX-5 is an automotive revolution which proves groundbreaking thinking can overcome compromise and turn the implausible into reality.

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 inherits its fluent, flowing lines and bold curves from the company’s new KODO soul of motion design philosophy. The result is a stunning stance and an illusion of constant motion, sure to turn heads even while it’s sitting still. The KODO inspired styling is not only stunning, but also highly functional. The sloping roofline distributes its weight toward the rear axle, while the dramatic style lines create strong tension throughout the body. The functional yet sporty rear roofline spoiler helps manager air flow over the vehicle and reduces turbulence, whereas its assertive, wide stance increases stability. Sophisticated headlamps add to the KODO inspired style lines of CX-5 for a stylish, assertive appeal. Bi-Xenon High Intensity Discharge headlamps offer broader, brighter and whiter light in all situations are offered as a part of Technology Package on Grand Touring and Touring models.

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 is the first vehicle of new Mazda generation, which will adopt the full range of the company’s breakthrough new design theme, ‘KODO – Soul of Motion’ and SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY that was introduced by Mazda MINAGI and Mazda SHINARI concept vehicles. The all-new Mazda CX-5 was launched progressively to international markets starting early in 2012. Developed around SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY, including all-new Mazda manual and automatic transmissions, diesel and petrol engines, body and chassis, the CX-5 offers a high-quality, rewarding ride and precise response matched to outstanding safety and environmental performance. The Mazda CX-5 development team focused on performance, form, texture and function, examined how to make them more pleasing and investigated all points of contact between the vehicle and the driver. Then they prioritized ergonomic design and concentrated on the most essential elements so as to provide a “purer” sense of driving pleasure.

The 2013 Mazda CX-5’s exterior design features bold styling which simultaneously expresses sport utility vehicle-like functionality and solidity with Mazda’s characteristic sense of agility and vitality. Inside, the company created a driver-oriented cockpit with solid styling which reflects the CX-5′s high rigidity and strength. Over the years, the company has often explored the idea of ‘motion’ for inspiring its exclusive vehicle designs. The new generation of Mazda cars, starting with CX-5 compact crossover sport utility vehicle, is influenced by nature’s beauty and power. They have been evolved by taking the instantaneous movement of humans or animals as inspiration.

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 isn’t the first compact crossover sport utility vehicle from the company, but it might as well be. The previous attempts of Mazda at making inroads in the extremely competitive class include Tribute and highly regarded CX-7. With this all new generously equipped and athletically minded compact sport utility vehicle, the company finally gets the recipe right. The 2013 CX-5 will be originally available with a 2.0-liter sophisticated four-cylinder direct-injected generating 150 pound-feet of torque and 155 horsepower and one fuel-efficient engine. The company estimates highway fuel economy at 33 miles per gallon, which means the CX-5 should be at the top of its segment for efficiency.

2013 Mazda CX-5 Review

In terms of cargo capability and storage, the 2013 Mazda CX-5 is on par with its rivals. The base model CX-5 Sport features 60/40-split-folding rear seats, but for those who enjoy snowboarding and four-up skiing, the Grand Touring and Touring models come with a special 40/20/40-split-folding backseat for accommodating long objects in the cargo area. Maximum cargo capacity isn’t best-in class, but it’s not far off. The 2013 CX-5 is traditional in concept yet still provides class-leading fuel efficiency, modern amenities and engaging driving and styling dynamics. There are plenty of other good choices this year, but we think CX-5 offers a compelling combination which can’t be found elsewhere at this price. Those who are considering the next-generation Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, Toyota RAV4 and Kia Sportage will benefit from putting the CX-5 on their short list.

Variants, Body Styles and Options

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 is available in one body style and in 3 trims: midlevel Touring, top-tier Grand Touring and base Sport.

The Sport comes standard with full power accessories, 17-inch alloy wheels, a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, keyless entry, a sound system with an iPod/USB audio interface, an auxiliary audio jack and a CD player and cruise control. For Sport, the company offers a Bluetooth Audio package which includes an upgraded sound system, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a color infotainment monitor and HD radio.

Opting for CX-5 Touring will get you rear privacy glass, foglights, a six-way power driver seat, upgraded cloth and interior trim, a blind-spot warning system and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. An in-dash TomTom navigation system is offered as a standalone option. The CX-5 Grand Touring comes with a sunroof, 19-inch alloy wheels, automatic wipers, automatic headlamps, an eight-way power driver seat, heated mirrors, heated front seats, leather upholstery, a premium nine-speaker Bose sound system with satellite radio and dual-zone automatic climate control.

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 Touring provides a Moonroof/Bose package which includes the nine-speaker Bose audio and sunroof. The Technology package gets the in-dash TomTom navigation system, automatic and adaptive xenon headlights, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and automatic wipers. At last, the already well equipped Grand Touring can be ordered with a Technology package of its own which adds the TomTom navigation system, keyless ignition/entry, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and the adaptive xenon headlamps.

What’s Beneath the Hood of 2013 Mazda CX-5?

Motivation for the 2013 Mazda CX-5 comes from a four-cylinder 2.0 liter engine, which is good for pulsating 155 horsepower with 150 pound feet of torque. The engine is mated to six-speed manual or automatic transmission with front wheel drive system. In performance testing, the CX-5 accelerated from 0 to 60 miles per hour in the time range of 9.3 seconds and offered the fuel economy of 33 mpg highway and 26 mpg in city driving.

Safety & Reliability

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 comes with standard safety features, which include traction and stability control, antilock disc brakes, full length side curtain airbags, active front head restraints and front seat side airbags. The blind-spot warning system is optional.

Special Features and Cockpit Design

The interior of 2013 Mazda CX-5 is modern, functional and attractive. The 2,700 mm wheelbase, one of the longest of the segment, enabled streamlined styling and a comfortable cockpit. Some of the cabin features include best in class rear seat legroom of 997 mm, roomy rear seats in which adult passengers can ride in comfort with ample knee space, 500 litres of useable luggage space maximized by removing protrusions and dead space, world’s first 40:20:40 split independent rear seats with remote fold-down function, rear centre seat that creates a large flat luggage space when folded down, tonneau cover that automatically lifts up and down as rear liftgate is opened and closed and smart, easy-to-use KARAKURI functionality.

A 5.8-inch color touchscreen display is positioned in the centre at the top of dashboard, and shows data related to infotainment system such as phone connection, audio and contains a new navigation system. The new HMI system of 2013 Mazda CX-5 enhances safety by minimizing driver’s eye movement away from the road. The menu controls for steering column mounted switches are arranged according to function, a HMI commander and a centre display touch screen positioned on the centre console.

Driving Impressions

The way the 2013 Mazda CX-5 drives is a dynamic departure from the compact sport utility vehicle class’ otherwise usual low standards. It has a newly-developed strut suspension at front and multilink layout at the rear. The geometry of suspension links and bush characteristics are optimized for ensuring excellent high-speed stability and light, linear steering response at mid-to-low speeds. The rear dampers have a forward-tilting layout that increases comfort even on rough road surfaces. The rigid yet lightweight SKYACTIV-BODY framework is optimized for handling stability, excellent collision safety performance and low NVH and supports its high-quality, responsive and rewarding ride.

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 uses full array of SKYACTIV Technologies for achieving outstanding emissions performance and fuel economy without sacrificing fun-to-drive character. In terms of safety, the company’s fundamental approach is to “inspire peace-of-mind and confidence in order to improve driving pleasure.” With its highly-rigid and lightweight SKYACTIV-BODY, the CX-5 offers excellent collision performance which will attain top ratings in crash tests around the world.