In a matter of weeks, the CX-5 will be leaving wheels HQ and just the mere thought of it being taken away is upsetting for the Mazda has, as we very much suspected, proven to be a real hit.
Even you, our dear readers, have liked what you have seen from it thus far with several emails praising various aspects of our 2018 Best Crossover of the Year from its design language to the sheer amount of technology and kit that it affords. As you know, this segment is littered with some very decent models ranging from the Peugeot 3008, Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain, Honda CR-V and the Jeep Compass. You really are spoilt for choice when it comes to smart and sensible family haulers but we’ve driven all of the above and picked the CX-5 as the pick of the bunch not just for its practicality but it’s the most impressive dynamically. It’s difficult to fault, not least when it has all sorts of goodies (including a fab Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio system which connects almost instantly to your device and has a crystal clear sound) but nobody out there makes a perfect car and so whad’ya know there are a few more, albeit minor, issues to add to the tiny niggles that I mentioned last week.
First off, the AC; it doesn’t half make a racket when you push the Max button. In fact, it’s so loud that once you have cranked up the volume on the radio to drown out the AC roar, your head will be pounding from all of the noise in there. Fortunately, the AC does such a sterling job in cooling the plush cabin down that it isn’t long before you’ll be fidgeting with the temperature knob and reducing the fan speed and enjoying a far more serene atmosphere.
The other thing bothering me is that the armrest isn’t actually big enough for you to be able to comfortably rest your right arm on. There are plenty of aftermarket armrest covers out there to solve this little issue but it’s a pity that you’d have to resort to buying one; there’s no hiding the fact that this is a bit of a design flaw.
However, the Sport mode makes up for any tiny shortcomings — and in a big way. The CX-5 is already a properly good CUV to drive but when you engage Sport, the Mazda’s transmission shifts and throttle response sharpen up considerably to deliver a far more sportier experience. The quick acceleration makes merging, changing lanes or passing other vehicles a doddle — but it doesn’t help the fuel efficiency. Obviously, more fuel is consumed due to the higher engine speeds which goes some way to explain why I have been struggling to better 11.4 litres per 100km ever since receiving the car a month ago. I think I won’t even bother trying anymore; I’d rather just enjoy the peppy performance produced by that brilliant Skyactiv engine. I’ll feather the throttle if the cost of fuel reaches UK prices. Let’s hope this never happens...
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