2014 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD Long-Term Road Test

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Dislodged Trim in Driver Footwell

March 18, 2014

2014 Mazda CX-5

With the exception of its cheapo floor mats, our long-term 2014 Mazda CX-5 generally makes the grade for interior quality. Its materials are mostly up to par, and everything's put together with convincing precision.

That said, I managed to dislodge this plastic trim piece in the driver footwell. How did this happen? Oh, I caught my right foot on the lower edge of it while excitedly getting out of the CX-5 to take a photo.

Sans trim piece, this was the scene in the Mazda's foot well.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Windshield Replacement

February 28, 2014

2014 Mazda CX-5

When the windshield on our 2014 Mazda CX-5 cracked, we figured it would be an easy fix. It turned out to be more difficult than expected.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Cracked Windshield

February 25, 2014

2014 Mazda CX-5

Earlier this week, I promised commentary from my road trip in the 2014 Mazda CX-5. Here's the first installment, but it's not in chronological order. Rather, this is what happened at the very end of the road trip. As I was driving south on Interstate 15, a rock flew up and hit the CX-5's windshield, creating a star on the passenger side of the glass.

Within an hour, that star became a 12-inch-long crack.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Floor Mat Attachment Failure

August 30, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Modern driver-side floor mats are held in place by a pair of clips, snaps, hooks or Velcro pads. Our 2014 Mazda CX-5 has a couple of big plastic pegs that protrude up from the floor carpet where they stand ready to snap into big plastic grommets that sandwich the floor mat.

I know. This is gripping stuff.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: 15,000-Mile Service

August 20, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Our 2014 Mazda CX-5 recently cleared 15,000 miles. As such, it was due for its 15,000-mile service. This essentially entails an oil change and tire rotation. The dealer also took care of a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) that was out on the vehicle.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: 10,000 Miles

June 25, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Our long-term 2014 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD has passed the 10,000-mile mark.

In its time with us, we've experienced some audio issues, installed a trailer hitch, and brought it in for its first oil change.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: First Service

June 18, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Due to a long road trip and some other obligations, our 2014 Mazda CX-5 missed its first scheduled service appointment. Shame, but not the end of the world. Had we not waited, we might not have noticed that there's a new Mazda dealership / service center right here in Santa Monica, Santa Monica Auto Group. (For those of you not here in SoCal, Mazda's had an iffy history of dealerships in L.A. They have solid outposts in the Valley, Long Beach and the IE, but nobody who lives on the West Side or Mid-City is going to go any of those places. Ever.)

The car was going in for two things: 1) an oil change and 2) to address the stereo issues we've been having.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Another Audio Issue

June 17, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Just the other day we told you about the intermittent iPod, today it's done something even stranger.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Trailer Hitch Installation

May 10, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Relax. We don't really plan to tow anything with the CX-5, though its 2,000-pound tow capacity isn't the lowest in the class. Possibly you've noticed that several of us ride bikes. Thus, there's a constant need to haul bikes. And roof racks are a just-plain-bad idea reserved for those who relish the sound of carbon fiber failing as it encounters a territorial dispute with their garage door.

We will use a hitch rack. Just as soon as we have a hitch.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: The Trailer Hitch

April 19, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

It's here. The Mazda Accessories trailer hitch, that is. And right now it's in a big box in my garage. However, within a week we'll be doing the installation ourselves.

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2014 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD: Octane Rating

March 22, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD

The topic of proper octane for our 2014 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD came up recently. Since I had the car, I looked it up in the owner's manual. Of course, I found the familiar refrain:

[87(R+M/2) method] or above (91 RON or above)

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Can You Tow It Behind a Motor Home?

March 18, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

Oh, sure. You can tow anything behind a motor home if you load it onto a trailer. But serious RV aficionados consider that a huge hassle, and a two-wheel tow dolly isn't much better.

The ideal scenario is pictured above. A so-called "dinghy" vehicle rolls behind on its own four wheels, ready to be unhooked and driven on side trips while the motor home sits moored with its awnings unfurled and its sliders popped out in full relaxation mode. The extra towed weight, loading time and storage problem that a trailer or dolly represents puts an unwelcome damper on such proceedings.

So, can you flat tow a 2014 (or 2013) Mazda CX-5 behind a motor home?

The short answer is, "No."

A slightly longer answer appears on page 3-53 of the 2014 Mazda CX-5 owner's manual under the heading Recreational Towing.

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2014 Mazda CX-5: Engine Break-in Procedure

March 1, 2013

2014 Mazda CX-5

This is the proper engine break-in procedure for the 2.5-liter in our 2014 Mazda CX-5 as recommended by the owner's manual. Well technically, they are recommended engine precautions during the first 1,000 miles of ownership. It's pretty standard stuff.

Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 1,223 miles

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Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2014 Mazda CX-5 in VA is:

$150 per month*
* Explanation
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