Advertisement

Why ads?
Popular at KBB.com
  • Midsize SUV Buyer's Guide
  • 10 Most Fuel-Efficient SUVs
  • Compact SUV Buyer's Guide
  • 15 Best Family Cars of 2015
Go

2011 Mazda CX-9

Overview
Share this page
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2011 Mazda CX-9 Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.4

When Mazda created the seven-passenger CX-9, it sought to build a family-friendly wagon that could also radiate the sporty, urban vibe created by its CX-7 crossover utility vehicle (CUV). Three years and a boatload of awards later, the 2011 CX-9 has successful accomplished Mazda's master plan, offering everything a growing family needs in a car and still looking cool while doing it. Sharing much of its architecture and drivetrain with the Ford Edge and Lincoln MKT (a product of the now defunct Ford/Mazda partnership), the CX-9 might be considered a bit of a world car, but regardless of its pedigree, its attitude is all Mazda. From its sleek good looks to its capable handling, stunning interior and standard safety features, the 2011 Mazda CX-9 truly is the coolest way for seven people to get around.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're youthful side craves the "Zoom-Zoom" attitude of a MAZDA3, but the responsible adult in you recognizes the needs of your growing family, the CX-9 may very well satisfy both.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Although the CX-9 is great for hauling kids and cargo, if you need to pull something heavier than 3,500 pounds, there is no substitute for a full-size, V8-powered SUV.

What's New for 2011

Other then improved fuel economy and some new wheels, there are no major changes for the 2011 Mazda CX-9.

Driving the CX-9

Driving Impressions When not burden by too many passengers or toys, the CX-9 does a credible job fulfilling the marketing department's promise of a "Zoom-Zoom" driving experience. Despite its substantial size and...

weight, the CX-9 acquits itself surprisingly well on curvy country roads and rides smoothly and quietly at freeway speeds. This combination of smooth ride and agile handling results from the CX-9's rigid unit-body chassis, low-friction MacPherson strut front and independent multi-link rear suspension, precise engine-speed-sensitive power rack-and-pinion steering and stabilizer bars at both ends. Add people and cargo to the mix, and the CX-9 becomes understandably less athletic.

60/40-Split, Sliding, Reclining Second-Row Seat
This versatile center-row seat slides five inches to accommodate long-legged folks either on or behind it. The seat also has reclining backrests, offers easy access to the third row with a one-handed release and folds flat into the floor to optimize cargo room.

Active Torque-Split All-Wheel-Drive
On available all-wheel-drive models, sensors signal control modules to send more torque to the axle with the best traction automatically. Up to half the engine's torque can be sent to the rear through a computer-controlled coupling connected to the rear differential.

2011 Mazda CX-9 Details
Interior

The CX-9's interior is practically luxury car plush. From the driver's seat the first feature that comes into view is a quad chrome-ringed gauge cluster brilliantly illuminated by blue and red lighting. Controls for ventilation and the audio system are logically laid out, flanked by rich wood spears running from dash to floor mirroring similar pieces on the door panels. The well-contoured bucket seats and two-tone trim bespeak luxury trappings, but the thick-grip three-spoke steering wheel and six-speed automatic with manual shift gate scream performance machine. The 60/40 second-row seat reclines and slides forward to enhance third-row access, and both it and the 50/50 third seat fold flat into the floor. Like many three-row crossovers, however, the CX-9's third row seat is best suited for children or diminutive adults. However, unlike many three-row CUVs, there is an ample 17.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row.

Exterior

As the big brother to the Mazda CX-7, the CX-9 is well suited to its more mature role. Though longer and heavier than the CX-7, the CX-9 retains Mazda's sports-car inspired styling, touting the company's signature five-point grille stretched over a wide, aggressive bumper. The styling theme is completed by a set of wrap-around headlights and a broad-shouldered tail with curving tail lights and twin trapezoidal chrome exhaust tips. Although gaining access to the third-row seat is still a bit of squeeze if you're an adult, the CX-9's long rear doors allow the best possible access and are particularly helpful when it comes time to install a childe safety seat. The tall roof can be easily accessed by standing on the bottom of the door opening, another helpful feature for those not blessed with overwhelming height.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2011 Mazda CX-9 is offered in three trim levels: Sport, Touring and Grand Touring. The base Sport comes with three-row, seven-passenger seating, power windows, locks and mirrors, tilt wheel, cruise control, AM/FM/CD audio, front and rear air conditioning, remote keyless entry, and six sets of airbags (front, side and full-length side curtain). Additional safety features include four-wheel ventilated anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), Traction Control System (TCS) and Dynamic Stability Control (DSC). The mid-range Touring and top-line Grand Touring add leather trim, power front seats and more.

Optional Equipment

Major options available on the CX-9 include SIRIUS Satellite Radio, DVD-based touch-screen navigation, Blind Spot Monitoring System, Surround Sound Bose premium audio with a six-CD changer (single disc when combined with navigation), rear DVD entertainment system, keyless entry and start, 4.3-inch view screen with rear backup camera and a power rear liftgate. All-wheel drive is an important functional option.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Mazda CX-9's 3.7-liter V6 is a variation of the 3.5-liter engine that powers its American cousins, the Ford Edge, however, the 3.7-liter version is specific to Mazda and Lincoln. It powers the front wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission, or all four wheels with Mazda's available Active Torque-Split all-wheel-drive.

3.7-liter V6
273 horsepower @ 6250 rpm
270 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 (FWD), 16/22 (AWD)

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2011 Mazda CX-9 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 261 Ratings for the 2007 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.2/10
    Quality
    9.3/10
  • Reliability
    9.4/10
    Performance
    9.3/10
  • Comfort
    9.3/10
    Styling
    9.4/10

Incredible smooth ride, tons of room, repair free!

By on Monday, June 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 99,900

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "roomy, comfortable, easy driving"

Cons: "none"

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

"Bought new and have not had one problem with it in almost 100,000 miles! I have recently replaced the tires for the 2nd time, and 2 batteries! Other than that, just routine scheduled maintenance! Everyone that gets in loves it for it's comfort, it's lush interior, it's easy handling, incredible roominess, and it looks good too! Highly recommend this vehicle!"

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Great car, Does what it's supposed to do.

By on Sunday, May 31, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 74,900

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Great take off speeds, and good riding conditions"

Cons: "Higher speeds can push the front in turns"

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

"Own this car for 4 years now, and haven't had an issue with it. I got used with 58000 miles on it, and now around 74900, and haven't had to anything other than general maintenance. Drives great in Snow and ice. We call it the Mazda-Rati :)"

7 people out of 12 found this review helpful

Great car; very comfortable; little to no problems

By on Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 105,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "great drive; great pick-up; long trips are easy"

Cons: "No cons"

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

"Rides well; very comfortable; great pick-up; 21.5 mpg around town and 24.5 mpg on trips; ride and mileage changed when new Bridgestone Ecopia 422 tires added. Color still looks great after 7 yrs."

6 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Good handling, Good Performance

By on Friday, March 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 73,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "fun to drive"

Cons: "couuld have more cupholders. center console compac"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"After 1200 mile trip very comfortable, drove well gas milage could be better got 20mpg to 22mpg depending on speed under 70mph gets best milage. Vehicle still gets looks and compliments. very well made."

17 people out of 38 found this review helpful

It's a wonderful automobile.

By on Thursday, March 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 120,000

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
10/10

Pros: "All around great car."

Cons: "Maybe a little better gas mileage"

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

"Seating is good, leg room is good, steering wheel controls, hands free Bluetooth, comfort driving. All around good."

7 people out of 13 found this review helpful

I will never own anything else!

By on Tuesday, March 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 28,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Interior, exterior, handling, passenger capacity"

Cons: "Nothing"

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

"It took me awhile to settle on what car I wanted and when I finally settled on a Mazda CX9 I was all in. How smart of me! This is a great car inside and out. I have always driven sporty cars and with four children I wanted something practical but still made me feel young (honestly speaking here). It is fun to drive, handles extremely well in all weather conditions and feels like you are driving in a luxury car. The driving comfort is top notch. When my present car comes to the end of its life somewhere down the road I will undoubtedly buy another one. Just a great car!"

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

Share this page

Advertisement

Why ads?
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?