Living in the Slightly Faster Street
An antidote of these acceleration ills is here by way of Mazda’s higher, 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, that occurs typical within the Touring and Grand Touring models for the 2014 model year. (The 2.0-liter keeps on on the Sport trim and, unlike the 2.5, that is available just with a six-speed auto, could become specific having 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 sure, but at the expense of some 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, but the 2014 2.5-liter test car returned only 21 mpg. Full disclosure: About 40 percent of the mileage within our 2.5-liter test car was gathered in foot-to-the-floor, no-quarter-given driving with the backwoods of northern Michigan. More restraint in the accelerator could yield results nearer to the certified EPA mixed amount of 26 mpg. Both engines are rated to tow about 2000 pounds, sufficient tugging power for personal watercraft and small cargo trailers.
However the numbers only tell element 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 where the base car would best wait for any wider opening. All the chassis goodness with the 2.0-liter CX-5 remains, as well as the linear response and feedback in the electrically assisted steering are arguably best in class. It is a well-balanced, cogently damped package that follows through on turn-in along with the routine predictability of a Michael Bay summer blockbuster.
However the braking components are away from exotic-single-pot calipers 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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