"Pros: Styling, functionality, performance
Cons: Gas mileage, no "xx miles to empty" gauge, key card is annoying
I've always owned sport sedans and recently started to notice my need for the functionality of an SUV. So many of them have that bulging station wagon/"look, I'm not really a minivan" appearance. I've also always had very particular tastes in cars and don't even consider them if I don't like the exterior styling. Call me a superficial car snob but I know what I like!
When I began shopping, I considered just 3 models: the Nissan Murano, the Infiniti version and the Mazda CX-9. I test drove the Murano and it seemed so much smaller and overpriced in comparison to the CX-9. (The Infiniti didn't even qualify for a test drive because of the sticker price.) The Mazda was larger with more distinctive exterior styling, offered many more standard features for the price and I love the "Zoom, Zoom" factor.
I purchased an AWD Grand Touring model in pearl white on black and love it. (I opted out of the Navi because of the price factor.) I love the way it drives, especially in inclement weather here in the Midwest, and surprisingly find myself using the functionality of the fold-down third-row seating more often than I expected. I can haul so much stuff in the back of this thing and the Bose sound system rocks!
Whenever we go out, everyone wants me to drive because of the seating capacity and its interior roominess and comfort. I joke that it's my "school bus" because it's so much bigger than what I traded in yet it's city gas mileage leaves much to be desired.
I absolutely cannot stand the key card feature though...it gets lost in my purse all the time or if I get out of the car for something, the car starts beeping loudly to the point of embarassment. I don't understand the draw of that "feature." I don't care much for the grill either and have been shopping for an aftermarket version. Outside from these minor things, the car was what I was looking for and more.
I do like the 20" rim size and have since bought chrome rim replacements. I frequently get compliments on the car and people stop to ask, "What kind of car is that, anyway?"
Would I recommend this car to someone? Absolutely. The pro's well outweigh the con's and maybe the men will actually like the silly keycard feature - my dad finds it fascinating - he shows it to everyone, as if that's the best part of the car! As long as I don't "feel" like I'm driving a minivan, I'm going to continue driving this until it's time to downsize again."
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