2011 Mazda CX-7 SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2011 Mazda CX-7 SUV

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Mazda CX-7 Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.3 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 244 hp @ 5000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation Yes
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2011 Mazda CX-7

  • Thanks to a sharp design and sharper handling, the 2011 Mazda CX-7 brings some much-needed fun to a practical but mostly bland segment.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Sporty handling; strong performance from the turbocharged four-cylinder engine; solid build quality; attention-getting design.

  • Cons

    Below-average interior utility; pokey base engine; turbo engine is thirsty and its power delivery is not as smooth as that of V6 rivals.

  • What's New for 2011

    For 2011, the base Mazda CX-7 with a normally aspirated four-cylinder gains a better-equipped upper trim called the CX-7i Touring. The turbo engine's fuel economy has improved slightly as well.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (70 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

So far so good

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Vehicle: 2010 Mazda CX-7

I have had my CX7 for a little over a year now. So far so good. I bought it used with 97 000km (approx 60000miles) and we have enjoyed it very much. The interior is very well appointed, everything is where it should be and the truck makes you feel safe. Cargo space could be a little better, but we have more than enough room for the baby stroller and all our groceries. Performance is very good, the truck picks up and goes when you ask it too, but it's no racecar that's for sure. Cabin is a little noisy but getting a decent set of tires will help that, I run 19 inch Yokohama Advan tires in the summer and there is barely any noise. I don't find the Bose sound system that good, the Bose system.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

It was a good suv

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Mazda CX-7

I enjoyed driving this truck everyday, until last year (2013) the turbo decided to quit. It started billowing smoke from the tailpipes. Luckily this was replaced under the warranty. Fast forward 9 months and 2000 miles over warranty the turbo goes again and Mazda refuses to pay for the entire fix. A part they fixed fails not even a year after it was replaced. I was a loyal Mazda owner and was looking forward to purchasing another, not anymore.

Surprisingly fun family car

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Vehicle: 2010 Mazda CX-7

When I bought this car, it was a necessary "downsizing" for me from a GMC Acadia (basically I took what I could get to get my payments more affordable). I didn't expect to like it; it was just something I bought to "get me by." Well, to my surprise, I am now a Mazda customer for life! This car has been very reliable, affordable, and fun to drive. Everything on the interior is clean and easy to use, and I think the exterior has a nice look to it as well. My family is growing so I am now taking advantage of the Mazda loyalty program to get a nice discount on the bigger CX-9. So glad I made this purchase!

18 of 49 people found this review helpful

Couldn't stand it!

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Vehicle: 2010 Mazda CX-7

The CX7 is a beautiful vehicle and that's what drew me in, but man do I regret buying it! This is the car that actually made me hate driving. I bought my CX7 new in 2010 when I had to retire my 2000 Cougar, which I had had for 10 years. I thought the CX7 would be a good fit for me since it kind of seemed like a bigger version of the Cougar! It took about 6 months for me to totally hate the CX7, but I had to keep it for 2 years before finally being able to afford trading it.

10 of 31 people found this review helpful

2010 mazda cx-7 misery

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Vehicle: 2010 Mazda CX-7

I purchaed a new CX-7 in Sept 2010. There are major flaws you need to be aware of before you buy. I learned the hard way and ended up trading the vehicle for a Nissan Murano. 1. Excessive road noise during highway driving. My wife & I commented to each other we needed ear plugs to drown out the tire noise. Apparently, Mazda did not sound proof the undercarriage. 2. Air conditioning is inadequate during hot summer days. We live in Georgia where the summers get hot, and the air conditioning system in this car can't keep up, not even close. So between the road noise and lack of a good air conditioner, the comfort factor is very poor, so poor I had trade the vehice.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

My first new car and

by on
Vehicle: 2010 Mazda CX-7

I love this car bought it on Nov 2010 brand new, i got the Stormy Blue and in the night it looks like Black, 360 degrees i love my car in the outside and inside. Very reliable never had an issue with my car as of yet. i have recommended Mazda to all my friends of just how reliable my car is. She is perfect!

Full 2011 Mazda CX-7 Review

What's New for 2011

For 2011, the base Mazda CX-7 with a normally aspirated four-cylinder gains a better-equipped upper trim called the CX-7i Touring. The turbo engine's fuel economy has improved slightly as well.


Every class needs its jock. Without him, your football team would've been terrible and the grading curve for your chemistry final would've been screwed up by the smart kids. In a similar vein, the 2011 Mazda CX-7 could be described as the jock of the compact-crossover class. The CX-7 isn't as sensible as most of its rivals, but it's good looking and far more exciting when you're behind the wheel.

Like most other Mazda models, the CX-7 offers precise handling and responsive steering for its class. A radically raked windshield, bulked-up fender flares and a wide-mouth grille are commonalities as well, and we'd say they look better on the CX-7 than on its siblings. They certainly add up to a more interesting, and, yes, athletic-looking crossover than such rivals as the Chevy Equinox, Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4.

Of course, those competitors are more practical, blessed with far more space for both passengers and cargo. Families in particular will appreciate the greater versatility and kid-friendly features of the competition. Their engines are also more appealing. True, the Mazda's available turbocharged engine is certainly brawny, but its fuel economy is worst in class. The normally aspirated engine of the base-model CX-7 is more economical, but still not to the degree of the most frugal choices in this class, and it's also rather slow.

So as you can see, there are distinct pros and cons to bringing a 2011 Mazda CX-7 home to mom. If you're looking for something that's more sensible though a bit less fun, we'd suggest checking out the 2011 Hyundai Tucson, 2011 Kia Sportage or 2011 Subaru Forester. Whoever said picking the jock would be easy?

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2011 Mazda CX-7 is five-passenger compact crossover SUV. There are two engines available; the base four-cylinder is indicated with an "i" and the turbocharged four-cylinder gets an "s." Each is available in different trim levels.

The base i SV comes equipped with 17-inch alloy wheels, cruise control, keyless entry, full power accessories, air-conditioning, a height-adjustable driver seat, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel and a four-speaker sound system with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack. The i Sport adds privacy glass, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and Bluetooth. The Convenience package adds to the i Sport a sunroof, automatic climate control, an eight-way power driver seat with manual lumbar adjustment, heated front seats, a color trip computer and a rearview camera. The i Touring includes all Convenience package items plus leather upholstery, a navigation system and a nine-speaker Bose sound system with a six-CD changer and satellite radio.

In addition to its turbocharged engine, the s Touring gains the i Sport's equipment plus 18-inch wheels, an eight-way power driver seat and manual lumbar adjustment, heated front seats, a cargo cover and leather upholstery. The Touring Technology package adds the rest of the i Touring's extra equipment. The s Grand Touring includes all previously mentioned items, but adds 19-inch wheels, automatic xenon headlights, foglamps, heated mirrors, automatic wipers, keyless ignition/entry, a blind-spot warning system, driver seat memory functions, a four-way power passenger seat and electroluminescent gauges.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2011 Mazda CX-7 i models are powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder that produces 161 horsepower and 161 pound-feet of torque. Front-wheel drive and a five-speed automatic are standard. In Edmunds testing, this engine took the CX-7 from zero to 60 mph in 9.8 seconds -- slow, but not much worse than the class average. EPA estimated fuel economy is 20 mpg city/28 mpg highway and 23 mpg combined.

The CX-7 s gets a turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder that produces 244 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed automatic and front-wheel drive are standard, but all-wheel drive is optional. In our tests, a CX-7 turbo accelerated from zero to 60 in 7.7 seconds -- a swift time for the class. EPA-estimated fuel economy is poor at 18/24/20 with front-wheel drive and 17/21/19 with AWD.


Every 2011 Mazda CX-7 comes standard with traction and stability control, antilock brakes with brake assist, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. In Edmunds brake testing, a CX-7 i Sport came to a stop from 60 mph in 131 feet -- a bit longer than average. In contrast, the CX-7 s Grand Touring stopped in an excellent 113 feet.

The CX-7 has not been rated using the government's new, more strenuous 2011 crash-testing procedures. Its 2010 ratings (which aren't comparable to 2011 tests) were a top five-star rating in both front and side collisions. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the CX-7 its highest rating of "Good" for both frontal-offset and side-impact crashworthiness, but the second-worst "Marginal" in the roof strength test.

Interior Design and Special Features

The CX-7's athletic styling carries over to the interior of the cabin, where the edgy yet functional design provides a more visually interesting environment than one might expect from a crossover SUV. A sporty three-spoke steering wheel is reminiscent of the one found in the Miata, while the gauge cluster is similar to the RX-8's. Build quality and ergonomics are both very good, although some might find the radio controls a bit complicated compared to other vehicles. The available navigation system is less expensive than those in most other cars, but its small display makes certain information hard to see.

Ample hiproom and headroom keep CX-7 passengers comfortable, even with all five seats occupied. However, rear legroom doesn't measure up to that of chief competitors, notably the Equinox. There are about 30 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second-row seat, while maximum capacity stands at about 59 cubes. The latter number is more than 10 cubes fewer than the class-leading RAV4, Forester and CR-V, but on par with crossovers like the Tucson and Sportage.

Driving Impressions

When it comes to handling and braking performance, the 2011 Mazda CX-7 lives up to Mazda's sporty reputation. The steering is nicely weighted, and the effort increases in direct proportion to cornering forces. This crossover SUV feels stable in turns and changes direction quickly. The CX-7 rides a bit firmer than most competitors, but that's a livable trade-off for such performance.

The performance of the base engine is merely adequate, with acceleration that's on the slow side even in a class of pokey performers. The turbocharged engine is much more spirited, but the combination of turbo lag and the transmission calibration sometimes makes the power delivery feel somewhat abrupt to those used to cruising around in crossovers with V6 engines. Fuel economy is also pretty poor.

Talk About The 2011 CX-7

Read more about the 2011 Mazda CX-7

Gas Mileage


  • 18
  • cty
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs