Mazda is a popular car brand that has always managed to produce great vehicles and offer them for a reasonable amount of money. They came up with the Skyactiv technology, and they use rotary engines, so we are getting enough of innovations from this company. Moreover, MazdaSpeed refinement is also known, and all these tech bits and pieces set Mazda apart from some giants in the world of cars. The latest 2017 Mazda CX-9 has been put to the test, so let’s see what it is like.
The car that was tested was the 2017 Mazda CX-9 Signature SUV, and it comes with three rows of seats and room for seven passengers. Mazda is climbing the ladder, and the latest CX9 is almost a luxurious vehicle. The Japanese automaker is definitely moving upscale, and we might expect some of the future vehicles to be competition to luxury ones.
Powerplant and Exhaust
Under the hood, there is a new Skyactiv-G 2.5T direct-injection I4 unit. We already could see this engine in few other Mazda models employing Dynamic Pressure Turbo, and it delivers 277 hp. Also, few other car makers have similar engines in their respective lineups but what is the essential difference is that in Mazda, the power plant delivers throttle response 20% to 25% faster compared to the engines as mentioned earlier.
The exhaust system of the 2017 Mazda CX-9 is authentic as the engineers came up with a 4-3-1 exhaust manifold. This means that the outer cylinders (1 and 4) have separate ports and the two center exhaust ports (2 and 3) are joined. This system allows exhaust pulses to come at a steady pace as the Japanese automaker stated resulting in smoother work. One more thing that we need to mention is the torque, about 310 lb-ft is available at 2,000 rpm. The engine is mated to a six-speed shiftable automatic gearbox, which sends power to all wheels.
The new FWD model will be 200-pound lighter compared to the previous version. However, if your Mazda is equipped with the iActiv AWD then it is even lighter – 289 pounds, to be precise. This weight reduction is important because the additional sound-deadening material which weighs 53 pounds has been added but does not influence overall performance and efficiency.
Exterior, Interior, Features
The second-generation started with 2016 model, and 2017 Mazda CX-9 will not offer any major design updates. Some of the rivals of this vehicle are Toyota Highlander, Ford Explorer, and Honda Pilot. Trims that are offered are Sport, Touring, Grand Touring and Signature. We will not talk about the features in all of these trims, but we will only focus on the Signature version.
Some of the main features are a navigation system, eight-way power adjustable driver’s seat and a head-up display. There are many more features, of course, but what sets this car apart is auburn colored leather interior with real rosewood trim by Fujigen. Moreover, Mazda worked together with Bose to construct an audio system that you can find in some luxurious vehicles.
The seats look great, and they are also comfortable during longer rides. Between the seats, there is a center console on which the controls for the display screen apps are located. All of the controls are easily accessible, and the driver can relax and focus on steering. There is enough room in the second-row of seats, whereas the passengers in the third row might feel a bit uncomfortable. These are ideal for kids but in case you need more cargo space, you can easily fold them to get more room.
Mazda CX-9 2017 Safety
The safety of every car is of the highest importance. Mazda is aware of this, and thus you can find the iActivsense safety suite in the 2017 Mazda CX-9. Advanced Blind Spot Monitoring with 24 GHz radar is included within the iActivsense technology. In addition, Adaptive Radar Cruise Control and Distance recognition support, Lane Keep Assist and Lane Departure Warning are added.
The engine is a quite powerful, but the torque is emphasized due to a variable-valve turbo. Moreover, the handling is improved, and the new CX-9 is easier to control on the road as the weight reduction brings a positive impact on the driving. The acceleration is also satisfactory and much better than on some previous models. The transmission is responsive and in general, driving the new Mazda is enjoyable.
You can choose Comfort and Sport mode. If you opt for the comfort mode, the drive will be pleasurable and quiet and the Sport mode, on the other hand, helps release the power, but the noise in the cabin is consequently increased.
2017 Mazda CX-9 Price
The 2016 Mazda CX-9 Signature was spot-on, and this model was far better than the 2015 version. The 2017 variant is even more polished, and it is a tough competitor to beat. The starting price for the base model is $31,520. The 2017 Mazda CX-9 Signature AWD, which we have analyzed, costs $44,015.