The second-gen Mazda CX-5 has been on sale since 2017, but the big news for this year is the addition of a new turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-four. The engine — dubbed Skyactiv-G — is shared with the Mazda6 and the Mazda CX-9 three-row crossover and makes 227 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque on regular gas and up to 250 hp when running premium fuel. Fuel economy for the new engine is rated at 22 mpg city, 27 mpg highway and 24 mpg combined. The engine is only available with all-wheel drive, but the extra grunt means fuel economy is down from the naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter inline-four (24 city, 30 highway and 26 combined). The new engine is wrapped in the same familiar package we've seen for the past couple of years, but is exclusive to the range-topping Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trim levels. This particular test car was a Signature, which starts at $37,935 before options. For reference, a base, front-wheel drive CX-5 Sport starts at $25,395. Standard features on the CX-5 Signature include 19-inch wheels, LED lighting, rain-sensing wipers, leather seating, heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, adaptive cruise control, proximity entry and push-button start, and a Bose audio system. Options on this Soul Red ($595) model are restricted to accessory items: $70 for a cargo mat, $125 for all-weather floor mats, $400 for illuminated door sills, $125 for a rear-bumper guard and $250 for a retractable cargo cover. The final MSRP comes in just below $40,000. Our contributor Ben Hsu had high praise for the CX-5 turbo in our recent first-drive review. Now the rest of us have had a crack at it. Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore: I love the CX-5's looks and driving dynamics. It's a sporty Mazda tailored to the crossover segment. This one, done up in Soul Red Crystal Metallic (what a name) and Signature trim with smokey 19-inch wheels, looks great. The Skyactiv-G four-cylinder with 227 hp (on 87 octane) and 310 pound-feet of torque makes for a brisk driving experience. In Sport mode, it's almost more eager than I want it to be. The main downside is the interior. The materials are just fine, and the infotainment is a little clunky to use. It takes a few more moves than I'd like to change the radio station. Also, major demerits for not being able to put a rear-facing car seat in the middle. Considering young families are a target market for this, that is not ideal. Otherwise, the CX-5 is fun-to-drive, smart looking and a solid option in this segment. Associate Editor Joel Stocksdale: The Mazda CX-5 was already a contender for being the best-driving compact crossover, but this turbo engine clinches it. The throttle response is impressively quick and boost comes on so smoothly. The bountiful torque makes it a blast when squirting through traffic and blasting out of corners. The transmission shifts smartly and smoothly, and I never felt like I needed to manually shift. The only downside is …
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|MPG||25 City / 31 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||187 @ 6000 rpm|
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