Mazda is pushing hard to increase its fuel economy and create its own little niche. It’s been successful to date, but the industry is catching up, so Mazda is pushing forward with more technology. One example is the introduction of a diesel-fueled CX-5 in the U.S. for the first time after four years of delays.
The new-generation CX-5 Diesel will look identical to the recently unveiled new-generation compact Mazda crossover. It’ll feature the newest take on Mazda’s KODO design, which includes clear cues from the new CX-9 and CX-3. These cues include new, thinner headlights, a longer nose, a more rounded rear hatch, a new grille, more flowing body lines, and more.
Inside, the staple Mazda features will remain, including the three-spoke steering wheel, the dash-top display, and rounded gauges. New for this generation are the more angular air vents, a higher shift knob, enhanced visibility through repositioned A-pillars, new two-step reclining rear seats, and more.
What will set the CX-5 Diesel apart will be the 2.2-liter SKYACTIV-D engine. This diesel four-cylinder will meet the new, stricter regulations put forward following the VW diesel scandal while also delivering smooth performance and that notorious low-end diesel torque. What’s more, it’ll also be among the most fuel-efficient vehicles in its class. Official U.S.-spec numbers are not available yet, but in the U.K., this engine cranks out 148 horsepower at 4,500 rpm and 280 pound-feet of torque from 1,800 to 2,600 rpm.
This new-to-the-U.S. diesel engine will mate with two six-speed transmissions: a manual and an automatic.
Safety is no issue with the current CX-5, which is an IIHS Top Safety Pick+. With the new-generation CX-5 Diesel having all the latest and greatest technology, we expect this rating to carry over unchanged. These new features will include a more advanced i-ACTIVSENSE and Mazda Proactive Safety. While Mazda didn’t get into specifics, it did say, “This includes the introduction of new technologies for supporting awareness and safer driving.”
Pricing & Release Date
With this model featuring a diesel engine, we do expect a few thousand dollar premium over the current generation’s pricing, which ranges from $22,695 to $30,770 (destination fees included). While there are no diesel models for it to clash with in this class, it will take heat from the thrifty Toyota RAV4 Hybrid ($28,850 to $34,970), the Subaru Crosstrek ($22,570 to $26,070), and the Honda CR-V ($24,745 to $34,395).
Mazda plans to have the 2017 CX-5 Diesel in stores in the second half of 2017.
Pictured: 2017 Mazda CX-5