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2013 Mazda CX-5

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2013 Mazda CX-5 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.4

The all-new 2013 Mazda CX-5 is destined to serve as a bellwether vehicle for the automaker. Introducing both the next generation of its corporate styling language and a comprehensive array of weight-saving, efficiency-enhancing Skyactiv technologies, this 5-passenger compact SUV promises an even greater level of Zoom-Zoom appeal. Available in Sport, Touring and Grand Touring trims, the CX-5 offers a choice of front-wheel drive (FWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD) as well as an attractive array of standards and options. Aimed squarely at the heart of one of the most hotly contested SUV market segments, the new Mazda CX-5 goes up against a host of formidable rivals, including the equally new Ford Escape and Honda CR-V as well as more seasoned veterans like the Chevrolet Equinox, Hyundai Tucson and Kia Sportage.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're in the market for a roomy compact SUV that matches impressive comfort, exceptional flexibility and outstanding fuel economy with class-leading handling and controllability, the 2013 Mazda CX-5 is well worth a test drive.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The CX-5's new 2.0-liter engine does sacrifice a measure of pure power in return for its increased fuel economy, a tradeoff that some may find a bit too 1-sided in light of the comparative output/mpg numbers put up by prime rivals like the new Ford Escape and Honda CR-V, as well as the Chevrolet Equinox.

What's New for 2013

This de facto replacement for the Mazda Tribute – a vehicle that was largely based on the current-generation Ford Escape - the 2013 CX-5 is an all-new, all-Mazda effort that significantly raises the benchmark with respect to its appearance, driving dynamics and overall efficiency.

Driving the CX-5
Driving Impressions

Feeling more like a 5-passenger sports car than compact sport utility vehicle, the new CX-5 makes a stellar dynamic impression on any road. A brilliant extension of Mazda's "Zoom-Zoom" spirit,...

... it matches a strong, rigid body with lighter, tighter underpinnings that add outstanding control without compromising overall ride comfort. The new electrically assisted power steering is well weighted and offers great feedback, while the CX-5's synergistically optimized suspension package limits body roll in corners and works to channel road harshness away from its well-isolated passenger compartment. Coupled with a robust wheel/tire package, this new Mazda feels agile, confident and surprisingly sure-footed. Although the added weight of the available all-wheel drive system puts a bit more stress on an engine that has more enthusiasm than absolute power – especially during more demanding uphill runs and passing maneuvers - the extra mass has little meaningful impact on the CX-5's dynamic characteristics.

Skyactiv technology

Mazda's comprehensive approach to weight reduction and design optimization in the CX-5's powertrain, structure and suspension elements endow this compact crossover with a genuinely winning personality that bodes well for its future success.


3-way remote rear seatback release

A trio of well-positioned handles located in the CX-5's cargo bay make quick work of lowering individual elements of its 40/20/40 rear seatback to more efficiently accommodate payloads of varying shapes and sizes.

2013 Mazda CX-5 Details
2013 Mazda CX-5 photo Interior

Mazda's new-generation design themes carry over into the CX-5's well-tailored cabin, creating a more inviting look and feel to this roomy and easily reconfigurable domain. Crafted to please both the driver and passengers, it complements a generous helping of soft-touch surfaces with user-friendly control layouts and a host of impressive standard features. The well-formed front bucket seats have been redesigned to provide greater comfort and support, while the adult-scaled 40/20/40 rear bench in the upline Touring/Grand Touring models features an industry-first, remote quick-release system for each individual back element. Pop its large, single-piece liftback rear hatch and pull a lever, and the CX-5's 34.1-cubic-foot rear bay nearly doubles in size, creating a long, near-flat cargo floor in the process.

Exterior
2013 Mazda CX-5 photo

The 2013 Mazda CX-5 is the first production vehicle to embody the automaker's new "Kodo - Soul of Motion" styling language. Closely resembling the Mazda Minagi Concept SUV on which it's based, the CX-5's bold, sleek lines and elegant proportions are set off by a functional rear spoiler. It also boasts a new front-end treatment that replaces the awkward "happy face" look with a far more sophisticated variation on Mazda's classic pentagonal grille. Aluminum 17-inch wheels mounting 225/65 all-season tires are standard on Sport/Touring CX-5s, while the Grand Touring wears 19-inch alloys wrapped in 225/55 rubber.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The new Mazda CX-5 is available in distinct model configurations. Key features in the CX-5 Sport include a full range of power assists, tilt/telescoping steering column with multifunction steering wheel, cruise control, keyless remote and a 60/40 split-folding rear seat. The Touring model adds things like upgraded upholstery cloth, 6-way power driver's seat, Blind Spot Monitor, 5.8-inch color display with backup camera, Bluetooth connectivity and a 40/20/40 rear bench. Highlights of the leather-lined CX-5 Grand Touring include a power moonroof, Bose audio, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, dual-zone climate control and 19-inch wheels. All CX-5's come with stability/traction control, Hill Launch Assist, antilock brakes and front/front-side/side-curtain airbags.

Optional Equipment

Beyond the standard feature variations that differentiate its three model lines and the choice of front-drive and all-wheel drive, the 2013 Mazda CX-5 offers several trim-specific option groups. A Bluetooth Audio Package for the Sport bundles Bluetooth phone/audio connectivity, a 5.8-inch touch-screen monitor and HD radio. The CX-5 Touring can be upgraded with a Moonroof/Bose Package (power moonroof/225-watt Bose premium audio system) and a Technology Package (TomTom-based Navigation, automatic auto-leveling bi-xenon headlights with Adaptive Front-lighting System and more) while the Technology Package for the Grand Touring also includes Mazda Advanced Keyless Entry. Sirius Satellite Radio (Touring only) and a trailer hitch are stand-alone extras.

Under the Hood

All versions of the 2013 Mazda CX-5 share the same naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G gasoline engine, a free-revving 4-cylinder designed for maximum efficiency and minimum weight. Developing 155 horsepower and 150 lb.-ft. of torque, it can be backed by a 6-speed manual (Sport FWD only) or 6-speed automatic that's standard-issue in Touring/Grand Touring models. Both compact, smooth-shifting transmissions are infused with their own dedicated Skyactiv elements and capable of taking the CX-5 from 0-60 mph in roughly 9.0-10.0 seconds, depending on drivetrain configuration. Stellar EPA highway numbers in the 31-35 mpg range place this new Mazda at the top of its class when it comes to mileage-maxing capabilities. And waiting in the wings for its 2013 debut is an even more efficient alternative: a Skyactiv-D turbodiesel set to make 170 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft. of torque.

2.0-liter inline-4
155 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
150 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,000 rpm
EPA City/highway fuel economy (est):
26/35 mpg (manual transmission, FWD)
26/32 mpg (automatic, FWD)
25/31 mpg (automatic, AWD)

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2013 Mazda CX-5 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 207 Ratings for the 2013 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.8/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    8.7/10

Loving my CX-5

By on Wednesday, July 20, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 250

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Awesome Bose sound system!"

Cons: "My husband feels the seats are a little narrow."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"After extensive research and based on my needs I chose to purchase the Mazda CX-5 and I'm extremely happy with my decision. My two choices were the Honda CRV and the CX-5. The CRV resembled a station wagon to me and so I chose to go with the CX-5, Touring. As a previous reviewer stated "in a sea of" Honda CRV's, Nissan Rouge's and Toyota Rav4's, the CX-5 has just a little touch of something different both in the design of the outside and inside the drivers seat. I've only had it for a few days but I LOVE driving this car. The inside design resembles that of a more expensive car. Without braking the bank I got sunroof, Bose speaker package, and Navigation, just to name a few. Love, Love, Love!!!"

great unntil back to back serious problems a

By on Thursday, July 7, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 32,900

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
5/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
3/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "good storage room and navigation"

Cons: "Reliability"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I purchased the 2013 CX5 in November 2012 Grand Touring fully loaded. I loved this car even for its sluggishness as I like to drive fast until 2 weeks ago. the first problem occurred when I shut off the car (keyless start and first the radio stayed on and then nothing on the dash shut off and could not lock the car doors. there was a bulletin on the issue and it was fixed (luckily still under warranty) with a switch. Then a week later I go to leave work and car started but would not drive and shut itself off. Was an air flow sensor again covered under warranty, their roadside assistance is a joke (1 1.2 hours with real rude tow ruck company (finally used AAA), I am about to leave on vacation and would have been stranded god knows where. I no longer feel safe or trust this car, What major problem will happen next. Do not buy"

Great Car (Bluetooth and USB Functions NOT Great)

By on Thursday, July 7, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 56,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Reliable, good power"

Cons: "USB/Bluetooth problems with Iphone/ipod"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Two years and 56,xxx miles, this CX5 Touring (essentially a base model FWD) has performed well in snow and ice. No maintenance problems, it has been very reliable as mostly HWY driving. My only issue is the USB functionality: ipod and iphone stopped working. (Ipod playlist worked one day then stopped the next.) Six months later the Bluetooth gave out (so no hands free phone). Dealer replaced the Bluetooth chip, so this is now functioning ($325 later). But USB is still not working. I drive a lot, so this USB / Bluetooth problem is unfortunate. The 4 cyl car has great pickup when passing, rear view camera works well when parking, great gas mileage. Could be a little quieter with road noise, car should have warning chimes when a dash light goes on, there should be an automatic light in hatch."

TEST DRIVE ONLY

By on Tuesday, June 28, 2016

I don't own this car

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Comfort, Quality, Electronics, Handling."

Cons: "Underpowered, Rough Ride"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

"I am looking for a new compact SUV. Today I drove the Mazda CX-5 for about an hour test drive on local back and main roads. The car is very well finished (a few cheap plastics here and there) and comfortable, especially with the 8 way power driver's seats. There are a lot of nice small amenities, including storage spaces, front visor extentions, and best of all, dual horns which can actually be heard on the road, unlike the cheap bleating ones on most cars. The electronics are pretty intuitive and dashboard graphics are easy to see, even with polarized sunglasses on. Handling on curves was great with a nice tight turning radius for parking ease. But, on some less than smooth roads the car was jiggly and hit a couple of speed bumps hard. Overall, the ride wasn't as smooth as my 9 year old Subaru, but a lot quieter. Acceleration is mediocre. This vehicle is underpowered, in my opinion. It seems to hunt through the gears too quickly, also. On a hot muggy Florida day, the a/c wasn't impressive, mainly due to slow fan speed, even on highest setting and recirculate."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Great car for the money and AWD too

By on Thursday, June 23, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "quick for a 4 banger and comfarable."

Cons: "No sirus radio come on."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Just got one of the 2016.5 Mazda cx-5's and love it. It's nice and quick off the line thanks to a 4:86 gearing. Very good on gas. Mine is the Touring edition."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

It is not what appears to be - Inaccurate Reviews

By on Wednesday, June 22, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,500

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
4/10
Quality
4/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
4/10

Pros: "It has the potential to be a reasonable vehicle"

Cons: "Mediocre vehicle"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I am certain that all of you have read many positive reviews about the Mazda CX-5. This is the reason why we purchased a CX-5 2015 Touring. We have used the vehicle since Jan. 2015, and had the "unfortunate" opportunity to test it very accurately. Based on modern manufacturing technology, the vehicle did exhibit several issues, most of them not truthfully reported in dedicated publications. We have been very patient with this vehicle, and hereafter is the list of problems that we have experienced and worthy to be noted by a potential buyer: 1) The metal skin of the vehicle is very, very thin ... a swag of a dog's tail will indent a door panel. Do not lean over the metal band between the doors and the roof: The belt loops in your pants will dent the skin!!! 2) The exterior trim is made of some sort of plastic that has the tendency to generate a white patina in humid days. The same can be said for the interior door panels. They need to be scrubbed with a mild detergent to clean the patina. 3) The blind spot monitoring had repeated issues, and had to be replaced and serviced several times. Currently, it does work on and off. Also, it operates only over about 20 miles per hour, just as at 10 miles per hour cars will not be approaching. Also, if there are no vehicles around for sometimes, a blinking light on the panel, similar to that of the system's failure, appears for no reason (Also see manual, as the issue is sold as a "Normal" function of the system). 4) For unknown reasons the battery after just over a year of operation went dead during one of our trips. The manual indicates that the battery should be replaced after a year! The battery took a re-charge, thus the reason of the problem is still unknown. Lights were turned off for sure. 5) Testing of the filler cap light indicated that the system does not detect if the tank is pressurized, i.e. filler cap not engaged. Thus, the EVAP system may not detect a gas leak. The matter is under investigation. Also, with reference to the fuel system, the car had a "Safety Recall" in Feb. 2015. 6) Much has been said about the Mazda "Zoom-Zoom" motto. If the car is driven at about 50 mph / 60 mph, and the steering wheel is rapidly rotated by about 30 deg., the car exhibits a nearly uncontrollable boarder line behavior. There is no need to believe me outright, just test drive the vehicle before you will purchase it. The test will simulate the case involving a typical avoidance of an obstacle on the road. The car has a relatively high center of gravity and a relatively soft suspension system. These are possibly the reasons of such behavior. 7) At idle the engine sounds clunky, and does not have the smooth operation that one would expect. The oil filter is actually smaller than the one mounted on the engine of a typical riding mower (Engine: 700 cc). Thus, an oil change after 5,000 miles (Schedule 2) would be appropriate. Also, the engine has one of the highest compression ratio on the market (13:1) .. more than a Ferrari road engine. Thus, even if regular gasoline could be used, a middle grade with additives could be a better choice. 8) Gas mileage is about 30 miles/gallon on the average.(Driven Miles Total ~24,500). 9) The Bose audio system appears to concentrate the sound at the front rather than in a surrounding fashion as it would be expected from the many speakers installed. 10) The Bluetooth connection to the phone has a mind of its own, and needs to be reset frequently as functionality is progressively lost with time of use. 11) The engine is noisy above 3,500 rpm, and the road (tire) noise is detectable more than one would expect. 12) The overall car appears to be fragile, and again the skin is so thin that can be very easily dented at the very minimum impact. 13) At certain speeds the exterior trims, particularly over the doors, emit cracking sounds depending on speed and atmospheric conditions. 14) Rear visibility is not great. Fortunately, there is a rear view camera. I listed most of the issues that we are having with this particular vehicle. Are there good points about it? I would say that the question has no merit since these days one would expect a modern car to perform much better. We are committed to get most of the issues resolved, and then planning to replace this car. It is really too bad, ... , Mazda really lost a good opportunity. The dealer mentioned that the CX-5 was the first vehicle completely designed by Mazda after the partnership with the Ford Motor Co. ended. In summary, I would suggest to really test the vehicle, and look at it all over before making a purchase. Personally, after our experience, I would not recommend it to a friend."

23 people out of 29 found this review helpful

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