47 Mazda CX-5: A crossover that’s ageing but still very much game

The Mazda CX-5: space inside is good, quality is unquestionable and reliability is little short of peerless.

The Mazda CX-5: space inside is good, quality is unquestionable and reliability is little short of peerless.

 

Recently updated, the CX-5 is actually closer to the end of its life than the beginning, but it will at the very least be able to slope off to its retirement knowing that it kickstarted a major revival for the Hiroshima-based company.

Back in 2012, Mazda’s future was far from certain. It was divorcing from Ford (although Ford actually retains a very small percentage shareholding to this day) and needed desperately to develop new platforms and engines of its own. And it didn’t have enough cash to survive if both of those weren’t right first time out. Thankfully for Mazda and the CX-5, they were with the light, low-friction SkyActiv combo of chassis and 2.2-litre diesel engine making the mid-size SUV a star performer right from the off. Those recent revisions have sharpened up the styling (fractionally) and also (fractionally) lifted the gloom of the mostly-black interior.

The 2.2 diesel is still refined and has excellent performance, but it does always seem a little thirstier than it ought to be. What the CX-5 does best, though, is drive – here is a tall-roofed crossover that the keen driver can really get their teeth into and, more crucially still, it imparts terrific confidence in any driver on an unfamiliar road on a wet, squally night. Space inside is good, quality is unquestionable and reliability is little short of peerless. Ageing? Yes, but still very much game, and don’t automatically discount the 2.0-litre petrol version.

Price range: €27,995 to €40,445

CO2 emissions: 119 to 144g/km

Which one? 2.2D Executive SE 4WD

PCP: from €304 per month