Refreshed 2017 Mazda CX-5 revealed
The 2017 Mazda CX-5 has been revealed at the LA Motor Show today, will go on-sale in February in Japan… no word yet on when it will arrive here.
THE REFRESHED 2017 Mazda CX-5 has been revealed at the LA Motor Show ahead of its launch in its home market of Japan in February. Tweaked under the slogan of “an SUV all customers will enjoy” the new CX-5 cops a revised exterior and interior, improved engines and changes to improve ride and handling, Mazda said.
Taking its lead from the new Mazda CX-9, the new CX-5 is wider (10mm) thanks to the wider corporate face featuring the signature wing that stretches across the face of the car. And to give that larger, wider snout even more presence the front grille gets a “three-dimensional pattern”.
The A-pillars have been pushed back by 35mm to help make the bonnet look like its thrusting forwards, a tiny bit like that of a Jaguar E-Type… or am I stretching it?
The aim, according to Mazda, was to make the car look more planted on the road and it certainly does that. To the point that, in profile the new CX-5 looks less like an SUV and more of a slightly taller hatchback.
The new CX-5 is offered in Mazda’s new Soul Crystal Red which, at least in photos, will be the pick of the colours for the thing, picking up all of the creases and angles in the bodywork.
Inside, Mazda said the interior was designed around the theme of “refined toughness”… okay. Key changes include a slightly higher centre console and thus a raised shifter position; 60mm (for the automatic) and 40mm (for the manual). Mazda claims that pushing the A-pillars back slightly has improved forwards vision. The wing mirrors have been made smaller, although Mazda said they’re more efficient and thus provide a better field of vision compared to the current car.
The seven-inch centre display screen has been moved to the very top of the dashboard, which Mazda claims reduces eye movement from the road; but you still need to control the functionality from the dial down on the centre console. The MZD Connect system offers the usual phone connectivity and audio streaming, but there’s no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto connectivity.
The CX-5 gets Mazda’s clever inner-spring seats with a new urethane foam in the base of the seat, while the seats in the back offer a two-stage recline function. Most other SUVs also offer this feature. That said, Mazda said it had lowered the hip point for the rear seats making it easier for people to climb in and out, with some variants offering rear seat heating and rear air vents.
The boot is slightly larger than the current car at 505 litres with the rear seats up (the current car offers 500 litres).
The Australian line-up hasn’t been announced yet, but the CX-5 will be available with either a 2.2-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder engine, or 2.0- and 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engines. These will be mated to either a six-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmission. On-demand all-wheel drive variants will be available and Mazda’s G-Vectoring system will also be included on the CX-5. The idea of G-Vectoring is that if the sensors detect that a wheel is exceeding a specific load rating, it will back off the torque supply to the that wheel in attempt to smooth out the cornering stance. It’s intended to be virtually imperceptible to the driver.
The new CX-5 gets tweaked suspension which includes thicker front dampers to improve front-end control on rebound, something that also affects the front-end of the CX-3 which can become floaty off bumps through the front.
The body itself is 15.5% stiffer than the old car thanks to the use of stronger, lighter steel. Mazda claims it improved noise insulation making the CX-5’s interior 10% quieter. Given that one of our main issues with the CX-5 is its NVH, particularly as the road surface deteriorates, this can only be a good thing.
The CX-5 will continue with the current car’s safety systems, both active and passive, with tweaks to the radar cruise control allowing the car to follow a vehicle from a standing start and display traffic sign information on the heads-up display – although this will depend on the market.
Question: Has the refreshed Mazda CX-5 done enough to keep it at the sharp end of the medium SUV pack, or have vehicles like the new VW Tiguan outpaced it?