I’ve all the time been keen on the little SUV’s that Mazda places out. Whereas they’re not quick or particularly sporting, they’ve received loads of mid-range grunt, are snug, and might haul fairly a little bit of our day-to-day detritus. They’re additionally pretty engaging, which is necessary within the crowded segments they inhabit. In any case, no one desires to drive an unpleasant automobile. However they by no means actually had any…machismo. No, the CX-3, CX-5, and CX-9 have been engaging in a reasonably however younger skilled form of approach. So when Mazda launched the CX-50 final fall, I discovered myself leaning in in direction of my monitor for a greater look.
The CX-50 has a extra muscular design. Swollen, muscular fenders and broad wheel arches. A large, flat hood. Aggressive and hungry-looking intakes and vents. It appears to be like…rugged. Succesful. Dare I say…powerful. This didn’t have that “young-mother-headed-to-Goal” look. This regarded like one thing a man with a beard and a pair of mountain climbing sneakers would possibly climb out of. It was actually sharp wanting. So we hurriedly requested Mazda if we’d spend a while driving one. They graciously agreed and delivered to us a turbocharged AWD Premium Plus mannequin that was priced within the low-forties USD.
The automobile we acquired was carrying an fascinating coloration paint that Mazda known as “Zircon Sand Metallic.” What’s Zircon Sand, it’s possible you’ll ask. Nicely, because it seems Zircon sand is an historical mineral sand that’s mined solely in Southern Africa and Australia and is used within the ceramics and foundry industries. And whereas it is available in a number of completely different colours, after we Googled it, the photographs that got here up the place the identical coloration as our CX-50. It’s an attention-grabbing coloration and we had a number of individuals touch upon it whereas we had it.
The within was equally eye-catching. It was known as Terracotta – for good purpose – because the color-blocked Terracotta leather-based within the black and grey inside regarded incredible. I’ve to offer credit score to Mazda for his or her Premium trim degree interiors. They’re so inviting and comfy, so pleasing to the attention, which you can’t assist however be impressed. Lesser trim ranges must make do with extra boring colours and plain design however the Premium degree hits it out of the park. Or the Zircon Sand pit. Whichever.
Underneath the hood, coupled to a 6-speed computerized transmission and a succesful AWD system, is a 2.5L turbocharged four-cylinder Skyactive gasoline engine that delivers 227 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. This engine strikes the CX-50 alongside decently, and although you’re not going to win any races with it, it would shock you. In my expertise, when launching from a light-weight, it initially felt sluggish. Wanting down on the speedometer, I’d see the needle swinging previous 25 mph in direction of 30 mph. I’d look as much as verify visitors, then look again on the speedometer solely to seek out it sweeping previous 70 mph. So it’s sluggish off the road nevertheless it’s received prodigious quantities of mid-range and upper-range energy. This makes it a little bit of a shark in freeway visitors. You’ll end up dicing by way of visitors like an F1 champ catching up after a sluggish pit cease. On the freeway, stepping out to go somebody was by no means a difficulty. There was truckloads of torque out there to slingshot it previous slower visitors and get you safely again in your lane. So it’s received it the place it counts. Mazda charges it’s towing capability as 3500 lbs, which is respectable.
The suspension is compliant however sporting. You could initially decide it as too comfortable, however you quickly understand that the primary inch or so of journey is comfortable however then issues agency up and the suspension delivers succesful efficiency. After awhile, you be taught to belief it when it begins to lean right into a sweeping nook as a result of you recognize it’s going to agency up and take in any bumps effortlessly whereas protecting the steadiness and agility that Mazda’s are recognized for. We by no means encountered any roads that have been too awful to upset it – and we encountered some awful roads. The journey remained compliant and accommodating and comfy.
The brakes have been admirable. Pedal really feel was wonderful and efficiency was wonderful as nicely. They repeatedly hauled the little SUV down from critical speeds with no drama and reassuring stability.
We logged fairly just a few miles within the CX-50 and located that we actually loved it. It was snug on lengthy drives, pleasing to drive, and surprisingly fast. It felt wider and extra spacious inside than the CX-5, which we assumed it was based mostly upon. Because it seems, it’s truly based mostly on the CX-30 platform however enlarged barely to make it a mid-sized SUV. No matter. It really works. The infotainment system/sat-nav system is improved this yr over these discovered within the CX-5 and CX-30.
Gas effectivity was spectacular. We drove it exhausting all week and by no means needed to refill the tank, which was an surprising shock. A lot of the SUV’s we drive want at the least one fill-up whereas we have now them they usually usually have bigger tanks than the CX-50.
The CX-50 2.5 naturally-aspirated mannequin begins at $27,550. The CX-50 Turbo begins at $37,150 and is definitely worth the $10k premium for the extra energy. The CX-50 Turbo Premium Plus like we had begins at $43,250. That’s not a lot cash for a good little SUV and that makes it price testing.
General, we preferred the CX-50 Turbo AWD Premium Plus. It’d be nicer with a bit of extra energy, nevertheless it does fairly nicely with what it’s imbued with. The heat and design of the outside and inside drew us in, however the perky engine and the graceful suspension received us over.