2016 Mazda CX-5 Review


You can stop wiping your eyes. You’re seeing this correctly. This is our 2016 Mazda CX-5 review and hopefully not the last vehicle Mazda entrusts to our name. I admit that I wasn’t initially all that excited when we were informed our first press vehicle was going to be a crossover but I kept an open mind and arranged delivery.

Prior to my time with the Mazda CX-5 I had looked at the brand as just another automaker of well-priced economy vehicles with a brilliant marketing team and a Zoom Zoom slogan. Despite the MX-5 Miata‘s unwavering success on the race track, Mazda’s dedication to sports cars died with the FD RX-7. That was my story and I was sticking to it. So how enjoyable could a heavy crossover really be?  It turns out, pretty damn enjoyable. Watch our full feature video review below and then keep going to see the specs of our test car and some final thoughts.



Trim: CX-5 Grand Touring AWD
Trans: 6-Speed Auto
Engine: 184-hp 2.5L DOHC 16-valve inline 4-cylinder
Drive: All-Wheel Drive

Exterior: Soul Red Metallic
Interior: Parchment Leather

2015 Mazda CX-5 interiorMSRP: $29,470
Destination Fee: $880

Packages & Options


  • Navigation
  • Smart City Brake Support
  • LED headlamps with auto leveling
  • Pivoting Adaptive Front Lighting System (AFS)
  • LED Foglights
  • LED Signature Daytime Running Lights
  • LED Signature rear combination lights
  • Auto dimming mirror with Homelink®


  • Mazda Radar Cruise Control with Close Proximity Warning
  • Smart Brake Support with Collision Warning
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Distance Recognition Support System
  • High Beam Control

Individual Options:

  • Soul Red Paint $300
  • Parking Sensors, Rear $475

Total MSRP: $34,130

Mazda CX-5

Final Thoughts

So you already know our thoughts on the 2016 CX-5 if you watched the video above, but if not, here are some parting sentiments.  The 2016 CX-5 is a sporty crossover in a sea of boring.  It brings a great mix of utility and driving enjoyment and, while it is no sports car, it’s totally believable that there is Miata DNA in there.  We generally judge a vehicle on how well it hauls people, how well it hauls stuff, and how well it hauls ass.  Well, the CX-5 hauled my Volk wheels, it hauled my family on a four hour trip to the beach, and it held its own on our acceleration test.  We might suggest the addition of some paddle shifters which have become ubiquitous on any vehicle with sporting pretensions, but it’s not a show stopper.  So if you are shopping for a wagon or crossover, take a trip over to your nearest Mazda dealer and test drive the CX-5.  Or if you want something smaller, the CX-3 is coming this fall and if you need to go bigger, take a look at the CX-9.  Keep an eye out here on RFD for more full feature reviews coming soon!