2019 CX-9 New Car Test Drive
The Mazda CX-9 is a stylish and engaging three-row crossover with a soft ride and handling that can move with some sedans. It gets better in 2019 with an upgraded interior and more creature comforts, including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard on all but the base Sport model.
There's just one engine, a 2.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder making 250 horsepower and an awesome 310 pound-feet of torque, matching the power of some rivals with V-6 engines. It's mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard with all-wheel drive available.
The 2019 CX-9 is EPA-rated at 22 mpg city, 28 highway, and 24 combined with front-wheel drive, and 20/26/23 mpg with all-wheel drive. The turbo engine needs premium fuel for the best acceleration; it runs on regular, but loses 23 horsepower.
The CX-9 scores better in the area of safety, with five stars from the NHTSA, with four stars for head-on crash and rollover resistance. It earns a Top Safety Pick award from IIHS insurance industry, who give a “Superior” nod to the active safety technology, while noting that the headlights are only 'Acceptable.'?
The safety technology is standard on every model but the Sport, where it's optional. The package includes automatic emergency braking with forward-collision warnings, blind-spot monitors, active lane control, lane-departure warnings, a surround-view camera system, adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beam headlights..
The 2019 CX-9 comes as Sport, Touring, Grand Touring, and Signature models, in standard front-wheel drive with all-wheel drive available for $1,800.
The front-wheel-drive Sport for $32,280 comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, cloth upholstery, three rows of seats, Bluetooth connectivity, and a 7.0-inch infotainment screen. The active safety package is optional for $1,290.
The $35,330 Touring adds the active safety package, leather upholstery, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, an 8.0-inch screen, power liftgate, and power front seats.
The $40,840 Grand Touring adds 20-inch wheels, a dual-pane sunroof, parking sensors, a head-up display, heated front and second row seats, heated steering wheel, and adaptive headlights.
The Signature for $45,365 comes with all-wheel drive, nappa leather, Bose audio, rosewood trim, LED headlights, and interior accent lighting. The CX-9 isn't considered a luxury car, but the Signature gives any luxury crossover a run for the money. .