2009 Mazda CX-9 Review

Pros & Cons

  • Sporty performance and handling, stylish and roomy cabin, loads of cargo space, easy access to spacious third row, solid build quality, high crash test scores.
  • Long rear doors can be hard to open in tight parking spaces, stiff ride with 20-inch wheels, a few cheap interior bits, stingy interior storage.
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Edmunds' Expert Review

For those who find themselves being dragged kicking and screaming out of their sporty sedan toward a family hauler, there's quite simply no better choice than the 2009 Mazda CX-9.

Vehicle overview

Large crossover SUVs started to appear just a few years ago, and already there are many excellent choices available to consumers. Mazda was one of the first automakers out of the gate with its CX-9, and it's been a success for the company ever since.

Aside from an engine upgrade last year, the 2009 Mazda CX-9 isn't much different from when it debuted two model years ago, and that suits us just fine. The CX-9's very spacious interior features a third-row seat suitable for even average-sized adults. It's easy to access, too. The CX-9 also boasts excellent build quality, an attractive dash design and an adequate number of technology and entertainment features. But, as always, the true pleasure of the Mazda CX-9 lies in its superb handling capabilities. No vehicle this size can ever be called nimble, but among large crossovers, Mazda's flagship stands out as being the most enjoyable to drive.

We're quite fond of the CX-9, though a few drawbacks, such as a potentially stiff ride quality, do open the door for you to consider other competitors. The Ford Flex and General Motors' "Lambda" quadruplets (Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia and Saturn Outlook) are all great choices, especially if you're interested in a pure family vehicle with ample cargo space and versatility. But for those who also value performance and driver feedback, the CX-9 won't disappoint.

2009 Mazda CX-9 models

The 2009 Mazda CX-9 is a large, seven-passenger crossover SUV that's available in three trim levels. The entry-level Sport comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, air-conditioning, full power accessories, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel with audio and cruise controls, a trip computer, Bluetooth phone connectivity, a CD player and an auxiliary audio jack. The mid-line Touring version adds heated mirrors, two-tone leather seating and heated, powered front seats. The top-of-the-line Grand Touring adds 20-inch wheels, xenon headlights, rain-sensing wipers, keyless ignition/entry, memory driver seat presets, wood cabin accents, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and special blue cabin illumination.

Major options, depending on the trim level, include an upgraded surround-sound Bose audio system with a six-CD changer, a sunroof, a power rear liftgate, a navigation system with a rearview camera, a stand-alone rearview camera (with a display in the rearview mirror), satellite radio, remote engine start, video game docking station and a traditional rear-seat entertainment system.

2009 Highlights

Only minor changes occur for the 2009 Mazda CX-9. A trip computer is now standard on all trim levels, and the base model gets standard Bluetooth phone capability. All-wheel-drive models come standard with a trailer tow prep package, and Grand Touring trims get a standard garage door opener and auto-dimming rearview mirror. In addition, satellite radio now comes with the upgraded audio and rear-seat entertainment packages.

Performance & mpg

The 2009 Mazda CX-9 is powered by a 3.7-liter V6 that makes 273 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard, while all trim levels can be equipped with either front- or all-wheel drive. All-wheel-drive models are equipped standard with a trailer tow prep package, which allows the CX-9 to tow up to 3,500 pounds when properly equipped. A front-wheel-drive CX-9 went from zero to 60 mph in 7.4 seconds, while AWD adds a second to that. This is on par for the segment.

EPA-rated fuel economy for a front-drive 2009 CX-9 is 16 mpg city/22 mpg highway and 18 mpg combined. All-wheel-drive CX-9s achieve 1 mpg less. Both ratings are slightly below class leaders.


All 2009 CX-9 models come standard with antilock disc brakes with brake assist, stability control with a rollover sensor, front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. A blind-spot warning system is standard on the Grand Touring. In National Highway Traffic Safety Administration testing, the CX-9 did very well, scoring five out of five stars in all front and side crash tests. Similarly, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the CX-9 its top rating of "Good" for both frontal-offset and side-impact crashworthiness.


Like most large crossovers, the 2009 Mazda CX-9 is well engineered for long road trips. Driven on curvy roads, however, the CX-9 really excels. A sport-tuned suspension and low-profile tires make the vehicle feel smaller than it is, and the steering is precise and direct, if a bit light on center. This high level of vehicle control is an advantage not only on back roads, but on confined city streets as well. Ride comfort is generally well-damped, though the 20-inch wheels on the Grand Touring make for a somewhat choppy ride on rough roads. For those who commute daily on well-traveled, chewed-up freeways, we say avoid the big rims and stick to something smaller.

Read our Mazda CX-9 Long-Term 20,000-Mile Test


With its available two-tone leather, red and blue instrument lighting, metal-look accents and either piano black or tasteful wood trim, the CX-9 has plenty of sporty style to spare. Most controls are ergonomically friendly and easy to use. Materials quality is hit-or-miss, however, and the CX-9 doesn't have many useful storage cubbies.

The two-passenger third-row seat is one of the roomiest you'll find, and is quite suitable for normal-sized adults. Access to the third row is easy thanks to large rear-door openings (which, unfortunately, can be troublesome in tight parking lots) and a fold-and-slide second row. With the third row in place, luggage space totals 17 cubic feet. Folding the second and third rows flat delivers 101 cubic feet of cargo capacity.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2009 Mazda CX-9.

Trending topics in reviews

Most helpful consumer reviews

Shame on Mazda
Touring 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A)
I drove my car for a long time and was quite pleased. It had it's minor issues but nothing major. The one thing I kept having problems with was the brakes. I took it into the mechanic 4 different times and they couldn't stop the squeaking. The Mazda dealership later told us that's just Mazda brakes and they all do that! That is not normal! It was only when I backed up, but then started when I stopped at a stop sign. I spent a lot of money trying to fix this problem, and I have yet to fix it. The final problem was the transfer case. The mechanic said it is designed very poorly because there is no way to do maintenance to it. You just have to replace it once it wears out, and if you don't replace it in time then it is linked to the transmission and then you need a new transmission. That is what happened to us. You know there is a problem when the mechanic can't even get the part because they don't have enough parts because there are so many cars having this issue. The final cost was $5,200, and the car is only worth $9,000. It hasn't even hit 100,000. I thought we bought a quality vehicle, and I really loved certain things about the CX 9, but I will never recommend this car to anyone.
Practical yet cool SUV
Let me start by saying that I am not a fan of SUV's. But I got one since every other car on the road is a truck of some sort and in the event of a crash I want my family to be safe. The CX-9 was the only SUV that received 5 stars for front and side crash and 4 star for rollover in ratings. Reliability has been superb so far with regular maintenance. We drove the Pilot, Highlander, MDX as well and hands down the MDX was the best of the 4 but at $10K more than the CX-9 it was expensive. The gas mileage was lower as well. Pilot was too boxy and the highlander costed as much as the MDX (which is lame). After a couple years and 20K miles it's still as solid as the first day! Recommended!
Sweetest SUV on the Market
You have to drive this vehicle to really appreciate how well it handles. With the AWD version, it feels like the car is driving on two rails it holds the road so well. The interior is luxury-car quiet. Very little road noise. The front driver seats seem a little narrow with the huge center console. It's about 10 inches longer than a Pilot or Highlander, but it doesn't look that way due to the excellent exterior design. Very sporty. The std. blue tooth is a nice touch. My wife LOVES this vehicle. So glad we didn't get a Pilot or Highlander. People complain about the gas mileage, but it's an SUV....they all consume too much gas. The CX-9 was very close in MPG to it's competitors.
Best Yet
Drove them all, including Lexus, Audi, Chevy and Buick, none had all the features and fun factor for the great price. Vehicle has been a pleasure to drive, city and highway, feels solid, no rattles, and interior quality is par with Lexus and Audi.

Features & Specs

See all Used 2009 Mazda CX-9 features & specs


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2009 Mazda CX-9

Used 2009 Mazda CX-9 Overview

The Used 2009 Mazda CX-9 is offered in the following submodels: CX-9 SUV. Available styles include Sport 4dr SUV (3.7L 6cyl 6A), Touring 4dr SUV (3.7L 6cyl 6A), Grand Touring 4dr SUV (3.7L 6cyl 6A), Sport 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A), Touring 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A), and Grand Touring 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A).

What's a good price on a Used 2009 Mazda CX-9?

Price comparisons for Used 2009 Mazda CX-9 trim styles:

  • The Used 2009 Mazda CX-9 Touring is priced between $8,495 and$8,495 with odometer readings between 103695 and103695 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2009 Mazda CX-9s are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2009 Mazda CX-9 for sale near. There are currently 1 used and CPO 2009 CX-9s listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $8,495 and mileage as low as 103695 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2009 Mazda CX-9.

Can't find a used 2009 Mazda CX-9s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Mazda CX-9 for sale - 2 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $15,221.

Find a used Mazda for sale - 11 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $11,509.

Find a used certified pre-owned Mazda CX-9 for sale - 4 great deals out of 6 listings starting at $14,751.

Find a used certified pre-owned Mazda for sale - 9 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $22,200.

Should I lease or buy a 2009 Mazda CX-9?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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