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REVIEW: Mazda CX-5 – Smooth Sailings

Bermaz Motor Sdn Bhd recently invited us for a trip north with their latest compact SUV, which happens to come equipped with SkyActiv Technology; encompassing the re-engineered improvements of engine, transmission, body and chassis of the Mazda CX-5.

Such improvements work together to help provide increased gains in terms of the vehicle’s safety rating, driving dynamics, weight reduction and aerodynamic efficiency with the use of stronger and lighter materials on a holistic point of view. Subsequently, this translates to better fuel economy which Mazda rates it at 9.1L/100km (Urban), 7.3L/100km (Combined) and 6.3L/100km (Extra Urban).

The new CX-5 comes in two guises, an All-Wheel-Drive (AWD) and Front-Wheel-Drive (FWD) variants; both  utilising a 2.0L direct-injection SkyActiv petrol engine that’s mated to a SkyActiv–Drive six-speed automatic transmission.

Mazda’s SkyActiv–Drive six-speed automatic transmission combines the advantages of a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), dual-clutch and a conventional automatic transmission to provide quick yet smooth gear shifts.

The 1,997cc SkyActiv engine is being utilised in both variants, and it has a rather unique 13:1 compression ratio that’s commonly found used in sport-bike engines. The AWD CX-5 produces 154bhp at 6,000rpm and 198Nm of torque at 4,000rpm; 1bhp and 2Nm of torque less than its FWD variant’s 155bhp at 6,000rpm and 200Nm of torque at 4,000rpm.

Even though the FWD CX-5 costs RM10,000 less than its AWD brethren priced at RM164,000. Both variants are very much identical in terms of looks and options, save an ‘AWD’ badge at the rear. But what justifies paying an additional RM10,000 for the AWD variant lies in the unique drive-train that is able to single out which wheel will receive more/less torque from the engine.

This allows the AWD CX-5 to help correct the onset of both under and oversteer, but the CX-5 does help to correct the vehicle’s understeer by transitioning it into an oversteer characteristic, but it won’t be too much that it would catch the river off-guard but it could be a little confusing to a drive if pushed hard and is very used to a either front or rear propulsion or both. None-the-less, the driver should find themsleves getting used to it in no time.

Such identical options include Bi-Xenon headlights, 9-speaker Bose sound system, Push Start button, rain sensors, driver’s seat power-adjustment, keyless entry system, cruise control, leather upholstered interior (including steering wheel), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Tyre Pressure monitor (TPM), Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) Traction Control System (TC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electric Sunroof, Reverse Camera, a 5.8” touch-screen TFT LCD screen, 8 airbags and 19” rims wrapped by 225/55 Toyo Proxes R36 tyres.

We first began the trip north in the AWD CX-5 variant and began to put it through its paces with a quick sprint on the highway. The AWD CX-5 will putter along nicely and calmly till you request a little more power out of it for over-taking purposes perhaps. To which, it seemed to enjoy shouting back with its engine as you watch the  needle fast approaching the 6,000rpm red-line limit, before shifting up seamlessly to a higher gear. Equally, down-shifts are extremely smooth, with the revs placed perfectly at every gear-shift. There are no engine-blips so there won’t be any sudden surge in torque as the auto-gearbox shifts down to lower gears, but rather it functions as if it were one smooth flow.

Off the highways and onto the back-roads, the AWD’s suspension held its composure remarkably well through the rough and uneven surfaces; even though it’s been fitted with 19” aluminium rims.

The AWD CX-5 hugs the corners markedly well and while the electric power assist steering is comfortably light at low speeds, it may require some getting used to when at speed as the steering-wheel begins to increase the turning tension; almost as if attempting to make the CX-5 head straight, requiring you to correct the amount of steering input.

While the AWD CX-5 was all smooth and comfortable, the FWD CX-5 provided a little more familiarity in terms of engine response, though its engine note was more audible within the cabin. Although gear changes were smooth, it did provide some abruptness; allowing the driver to feel more engaged and adding the element that this FWD CX-5 is a little bit more unrefined and fun to drive.

The Mazda CX-5 comes with a 3 Year warranty + 3 Years Maintenance Free (including parts and labour – excluding tyres and brake pads) and will come with a choice of five vibrant colours: Sky Blue, Zeal Red, Crystal White Pearl, Aluminium Metallic and Metropolitan Grey.

Price:
– MAZDA CX-5 (FWD): RM159,500.40 (OTR  + Ins)
– MAZDA CX-5 (AWD): RM169,760.40 (OTR  + Ins)

MAZDA CX-5 SkyActiv-G 2.0 (AWD/FWD) –  Specs:

  • Displacement – 1,997cc
  • Compression Ratio – 13:1
  • Max Power – 113bhp @ 6,000rpm (AWD) / 114bhp @6,000rpm (FWD)
  • Max Torque – 198Nmw @ 4,000rpm (AWD) / 200Nm @ 4,000rpm (FWD)
  • Fuel Tank Capacity – 58L (AWD) / 56L (FWD)

 

http://youtu.be/n7dlhOsp-Vo

 

COMMENTS FROM PREVIOUS PLATFORM:

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julian.jules (07-23-2012)
Old 07-19-2012, 06:29 PM   #2
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Default Re: DRIVEN: Mazda CX-5 – Smooth Sailings

good review! but the car as a vehicle, nothing special
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Old 07-19-2012, 07:24 PM   #3
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Default Re: DRIVEN: Mazda CX-5 – Smooth Sailings

13:1 compression ratio.can use ron95 ar?
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Old 07-19-2012, 07:41 PM   #4
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Default Re: DRIVEN: Mazda CX-5 – Smooth Sailings

errr…113bhp?
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Old 07-20-2012, 01:08 AM   #5
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Default Re: DRIVEN: Mazda CX-5 – Smooth Sailings

Appologies… it’s supposed to be in kW… so the final figure is actually 151bhp (AWD) and 152bhp (FWD).
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Old 07-23-2012, 12:27 AM   #6
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Default Re: DRIVEN: Mazda CX-5 – Smooth Sailings

Hi Jay. That day I looked at the list, Jay from ZTH. But never see u one? Assume that avatar is u. Haha
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