Life in the Gently Speedier Lane
An antidote for such acceleration ills is here in the form of Mazda’s higher, 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, which comes standard in the Touring and Grand Touring models for the 2014 model year. (The 2.0-liter keeps on inside the Sport trim and, unlike the 2.5, which is offered just with a six-speed auto, could become specific using a six-speed manual.) Although bigger by half a liter, the recent mill bumps output by 29 horsepower and 35 lb-ft of torque. So lucky, our CX-5 cracked off a 7.6-second 0-to-60 time and knocked down the quarter in 15.8. Welcome improvements to be certain, but at the price of several mpg.
Our long-term 2013 CX-5 Touring AWD with the 2.0-liter and automatic offers averaged a great 28 mpg in mixed driving, however the 2014 2.5-liter test car returned only 21 mpg. Full disclosure: Around 40 % of the mileage in our 2.5-liter test car was gathered in foot-to-the-floor, no-quarter-given driving from the backwoods of northern Michigan. More restraint using the accelerator could yield results nearer to the certified EPA mixed amount of 26 mpg. Both engines are rated to tow nearly 2000 pounds, enough tugging power for individual watercraft and small cargo trailers.
But the numbers only tell a part of the story. Whereas the 155-hp, 2.0-liter CX-5 is a willing but weak companion, the 184-hp, 2.5-liter car is a little an instigator, cutting and running in traffic situations that the base car would best hold out for any wider opening. All the chassis goodness from the 2.0-liter CX-5 remains, along with the linear response and feedback through the electrically assisted steering are arguably best in class. This can be a well-balanced, cogently damped package that follows through on turn-in together with the routine predictability on the Michael Bay summer blockbuster.
Although the braking components are away from exotic-single-pot calipers all around, 11.7-inch vented front rotors and 11.9-inch solid rotors in back-Mazda has tuned the setup well, and our CX-5 2.5 stopped from 70 mph in 166 feet.
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