2014 Mazda CX-5: Like How It Drives, Love How It Looks
October 24, 2013
I always enjoy driving our long-term 2014 Mazda CX-5. The engine is powerful enough to cope with Southern California traffic conditions. The six-speed automatic transmission is best in class for shift timing and smoothness. The ride is controlled, yet never harsh. The handling borders on sporty, and the steering is quicker and more accurate than any rival's.
Yes, I like our CX-5. But I'm not excited about it like I was when I drove a CX-5 prototype with a version of Mazda's 2.2-liter Skyactiv diesel four-cylinder with a six-speed manual gearbox.
That turbodiesel version of the CX-5 went to Europe, but given the realities of the U.S. market, I'm not holding my breath it will ever come here.
That said, when I see our long-term Mazda CX-5 in the fading daylight, I can see the justification for buying it over a Honda CR-V: It looks great from any angle, including this one, which rarely flatters flat-butted crossover SUVs. If I was going to buy a crossover today, vanity might tip the decision in favor of the Mazda.
Erin Riches, Deputy Editor @ 19,304 miles