What is it?
The latest, revised version of Mazda’s biggest SUV. It’s the kind of car in which you might not expect to find a petrol engine offered at all – let alone a normally aspirated one, given a market where the vast majority of all combustion engines are now turbocharged. And yet, because Mazda is Mazda, it likes to do things according to its own particular philosophy. So more or less the same 2.0-litre atmospheric Skyactiv-G engine as once powered the Mazda MX-5 roadster can be had in the Volkswagen Tiguan-rivalling CX-5.
That means you won’t find the firm’s new variable compression-ratio Skyactiv-X petrol motor here, which makes slightly more power and torque for the smaller and lighter Mazda 3 hatchback and the Mazda CX-30 crossover than this CX-5 gets. For reasons best known to Mazda, the CX-5 continues with the older petrol lump, although it has gained an active cylinder shutdown system, which delivers an 8% saving on like-for-like WLTP-certified, lab test CO2 emissions.
If you do still prefer diesel power in your compact SUV, the CX-5 also comes with Mazda’s 2.2-litre diesel in a choice of 148bhp and 181bhp tunes. The higher-powered diesel is now the only CX-5 available with four-wheel drive, but you can choose between a six-speed manual or automatic transmission with every engine in the range.