3/4 Front Glamour 2015 Mazda CX-5

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, Automotive Editor -

The 2015 model year marks the third year of production for Mazda’s fun-to-drive CX-5 crossover, our favorite small crossover/SUV to come along in quite some time. The CX-5 earns its class-leading efficiency and handling chops thanks to its Mazda Skyactiv engineering focus on light weight, both in its powertrains and chassis design. The result vehicle is a hoot to drive while earning an excellent 35 mpg on the highway.

Mazda is widely expected to finally bring its high-tech Skyactiv-D diesel 4-cylinder to the CX-5 lineup for 2015 later in the model year as well as in the new Mazda6. This wonder of a motor produces 310 lb-ft. of torque in European trim, and while it has been delayed for a U.S. launch, efficiency could well approach 40 highway mpg, unheard of in any crossover to date.

Other changes for 2015 are expected to include additional interior infotainment and connectivity tech, an area where Mazda has fallen behind its mainstream competitors. The CX-5 will also reportedly get additional active driving aid and safety technologies that are all the rage on the newest vehicles these days.

Pricing should echo the current model, which is available as the Sport with the 2.0-liter Skyactiv from $21,395, or as the Touring model with the larger 2.5-liter engine priced from $24,815. Expect the 2015 model in dealerships by mid-Spring, with the diesel model to follow in the Fall.

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