MAZDA CX-5 MAXX SPORT
VALUE Mazda’s excellent reputation for reliability, strong resale and pleasant body designs shores up the CX-5. The diesel is a winner at the price but think about adding the $1490 safety pack. Sixmonthly service intervals and no capped price program are poor but resale is a strong 56 per cent. DESIGN Neat and functional shape and well-kitted out cabin enable useful luggage space (403L/1560L). Seats fold nearly flat. Cloth seats, soft-touch trim and satnav combine in attractive, easy-to-use dashboard. Slightly more rear legroom than the Sportage and deeper windows improve outlook. TECHNOLOGY SkyActiv is the umbrella term for a lightweight, high-strength body; clever six-speed automatic and bi-turbo 2.2-litre diesel (129kW/420Nm). It works perfectly. Fuel economy is a startling 5.7L/100km from a 58L tank. It has on-demand all-wheel drive. The all-wheel drive CX-5 tows 1800kg and has an 11.2m turning circle. SAFETY Five stars, six airbags, electronic aids, reverse camera (but no sensors), emergency brake display, tyre pressure monitor and hill-holder device are standard. CX-5 gets a full-size, temporary spare. Optional safety pack adds blind-spot monitoring, auto-dipping rear mirror and helpful auto city-brake anti-collision function — a must have. DRIVING This is the engine that makes the CX-5 such a star. The diesel is quiet, very punchy and almost without lag — it puts European diesels to shame. It’s helped by a slick automatic. Ride comfort is good, handling is lively (though nose-heavy) and even the electricassist steering has plenty of feel — it’s well balanced for city and country driving.