Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.
You can interpret our ratings in the following way:
5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.
4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.
3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.
2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.
1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.
2016 Mazda CX-5 OVERVIEW
Standing out in the crowded compact crossover field can be tough, but the athletic Mazda CX-5 has always been different enough to stay on buyers' radar. To ensure it remains competitive with the best of the breed, Mazda has treated the CX-5 to a midlife makeover that's especially apparent inside.
What's New for 2016
The interior receives a thorough freshening, highlighted by a new center console and electronic parking brake. The CX-5 also carries a revised grille and updated suspension system.
Choosing Your Mazda CX-5
The CX-5's redesigned cabin achieves an upscale feel this year, something that was lacking in previous editions. Although dimensions have not changed, the elimination of a traditional parking brake and the new storage-rich console give an airy vibe to the interior. The CX-5 is known more for its sprightly handling than its utility, but you do get 65 cubic feet of cargo space, a competitive amount for this class.
The front-drive CX-5 starts out with a 2-liter four-cylinder engine good for 155 horsepower, paired with your choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. Either way, expect to get about 29 mpg in combined driving.
The available 2.5-liter four-cylinder provides a boost to 184 horsepower and comes only with the automatic.
The larger engine is standard on the upper trim levels and any model with the $1,250 option of all-wheel drive. It makes a dramatic difference in the CX-5's performance and trails the 2-liter in efficiency by just 1 mpg, even in all-wheel drive spec.
As before, the CX-5 is offered in Sport, Touring and Grand Touring trims:
Any CX-5 is a good deal -- even a fully loaded CX-5 Grand Touring with all-wheel drive checks in at less than $30,000.
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