- Fun to drive
- Impressive standard kit
- One of the safest cars in its class
- Not that refined
- Interior design is bland
- Wind and road noise at speed
Stylish SUV is one of the class-leaders
The Mazda CX-5, first introduced in 2013, is the Japanese manufacturer’s entry into the family SUV market. Up against the best-selling Nissan Qashqai, and the classy Volkswagen Tiguan, the CX-5 finds itself in an incredibly competitive market. The CX-5 is however one of the most complete SUVs on sale. It’s practical, attractive, and features some impressively efficient engines. There’s also generous standard equipment, all of which make the CX-5 exceptionally good value for money.
Solid, spacious, and generously equipped
The interior of the CX-5 is one of the areas in which it excels. The cabin is well-designed, solidly built, and spacious. There’s also lots of storage space, and there’s plenty of kit, even on the most basic models.
The dashboard of the CX-5 doesn’t quite have the quality of a Volkswagen Tiguan, but it’s still impressively well-built. The design is simple, and controls are easy to use, but it lacks the pizzazz of some rivals. Material quality is however impressive, with soft-touch plastics, and gloss black trim featuring. It all feels pretty high-end, but there are some harder plastics to be found further down the dashboard.
The CX-5 is also one of the most spacious cars in its class. With 503 litres of boot capacity, it’s bigger than the Nissan Qashqai (430 litres), the Renault Kadjar (472 litres), and the same size as the Kia Sportage. The CX-5 also features a low loading lip, which makes getting heavy items in and out a doddle. The innovative folding rear seats, controlled by a flick of a switch in the boot, are also an impressive practical feature.
Equipment levels in the CX-5 are extremely generous, even on the most basic models. The entry-level SE-L Nav trims comes with everything most families will need, with front and rear parking sensors, sat-nav, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, electric windows, Bluetooth, and automatic lights and wipers.
The inside of the CX-5 is one of the most impressive packages in the SUV market. It’s spacious, well-built, and features an impressively big boot. There’s also class-leading entry-level kit, so you’ll be getting excellent value for money.
Excellent handling for a SUV
The one area in which the CX-5 has the beating of all its major rivals is in its driving experience. There are few family cars that are quite as much fun to drive as the CX-5. Handling is sharp and responsive, and there’s plenty of grip through the corners. There’s also little in the way of body roll, due to the CX-5’s stiff chassis, so it’s a great car for winding country lanes, as well in the city.
Ride refinement in the CX-5 is decent, though it’s not the most comfortable car around town. The CX-5’s stiff setup means that rough surfaces and potholes can thud through into the cabin, especially at lower speeds. It’s also quite noisy on the motorway, as the CX-5 isn’t insulated enough to keep out road, wind and engine noise. It’s not overly intrusive, but the CX-5 isn’t quite as good as the Tiguan.
Gearbox options in the CX-5 come in two guises. The standard throughout the range is the excellent six-speed manual, that’s sharp and responsive. It really adds to the driving experience, as it feels like it’s been lifted straight from a sports car. There’s also an automatic option for those who don’t like changing gear, that performs reasonably well.
Some impressively efficient, green engines
When it comes to deciding how you want to power your CX-5, you’ve got the usual two options: petrol, or diesel. There’s a good range of power outputs throughout the range, but the low-powered diesel is undoubtedly the pick of the bunch.
If it’s power that you want from your CX-5, you’re more than likely going to be disappointed with the engines in the CX-5 range. Engines do however throughout the range offer enough punch for most drivers, and they all perform well at speed. The fastest engine in the range is the diesel-powered 2.2d  Sport, which produces 175bhp, and will accelerate you from 0-62mph in just 8.8 seconds, but it’s not the most efficient, and it’s not that must quicker than the lower powered diesel.
Eco-friendly buyers will undoubtedly want to take a look at the low-powered 2.2 litre diesel engine. This produces just 119g/km of CO2 emissions. It doesn’t quite fall below the magic 100g/km mark, but it’s mightily impressive for a car the size of the CX-5. This engine is also the best option for money-savers. Not only does it feature the lowest road tax costs each year, it also offers up to 61.4mpg, so you can save even more money at the fuel pumps each month.
Whichever engine you choose to go for in your CX-5 you’re going to get a punchy, efficient, and relatively green car. The low-powered diesel offers the best flexibility, as it’s the cheapest to run, and only 0.4 seconds slower to 62mph than the less efficient, higher powered diesel.
Full marks in NCAP safety tests, impressive safety kit
Like nearly every car in its class, the Mazda CX-5 easily achieved the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. With scores of 94% in adult safety, 87% in child safety, and 64% in pedestrian safety, the CX-5 is among the safest cars in the SUV class. It also features some impressive safety equipment. Even the most basic CX-5s come with six airbags, stability control, and Smart City Brake Support, which brakes automatically in the event of an emergency.
Great value for money, if you avoid the cost of new-car depreciation
The Mazda CX-5 represents great value for money for buyers. This obviously varies from model to model, but generally speaking CO2 emissions are relatively low throughout the range, making road tax reasonable, and fuel efficiency is pleasingly high, so you can save yourself plenty of money on petrol or diesel each month.
Insurance costs in the CX-5 are also pretty reasonable. This again depends on which engine and trim you go for, but you won’t be paying any more than you would be for an equivalent rival. The cheapest CX-5 to insure in the range is the 2.0 SE-L, which is in group 15, whilst the most expensive is the top of the range 2.2d (175) Sport Nav AWD, which is in group 21.
Depreciation is a large factor with the CX-5, but only if you choose to buy from new. With first year depreciation as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
The Mazda CX-5 is one of the most complete family SUVs currently on the market. It really is hard to fault. It features a practical interior, some efficient engines, an impeccable safety record, and generous equipment, not to mention the fact that it is without doubt one of the best-looking family cars money can buy.
Buying a used Mazda CX-5 online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Mazda CX-5 for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used CX-5. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Mazda CX-5 online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Mazda? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Mazda CX-5, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used CX-5, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Carspring Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Mazda to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.