What is the CX-9?
The 2023 Mazda CX-9 is a three-row midsize SUV and currently the largest SUV in the automaker's lineup, sitting above the recently introduced Mazda CX-50. An all-new three-row crossover SUV dubbed the CX-90 is on the horizon, which could mean the CX-9's days are numbered. But for 2023, at least, the CX-9 is still in the mix.
This year's CX-9 receives only minor changes. The most significant of them is that the base trim level, the Sport, is no longer available. That means the former next-step-up Touring is now the least expensive CX-9 trim on offer and, as such, the CX-9's entry-level price is a few thousand dollars more than most rival three-row SUVs. But you are getting a pleasingly well-equipped SUV out of the deal. Plus, updates over the past few years such as standard all-wheel drive and an upgraded infotainment system have done a lot to keep it from falling behind in a highly competitive class.
Just about every mainstream automaker has an SUV in this class so it takes a lot for a product to stand out. Some of Edmunds' top picks include the Kia Telluride, Hyundai Palisade, Honda Pilot and Volkswagen Atlas. If you don't need a third row (and the CX-9's is one of the least spacious third rows around), the new Mazda CX-50 looks and feels a bit more modern than the aging CX-9. But no other three-row looks and feels quite like the CX-9. It's sporty, sure, but it's also quiet and comfortable on the road, enhancing the premium feel even further.