Behold: Mazda Unveils Redesigned 2017 CX-5 at LA Auto Show
Mazda has been redesigning its vehicle lineup since the introduction of the CX-5 back in 2012, when it became the first Mazda to be decked out in KODO design and SKYACTIV tech. Since then, the Zoom Zoom brand has gradually remade its lineup, paring down weight and adding style to create a solid, good-looking line of vehicles.
Then, with the last step in the revamping process, the introduction of the new CX-9, the stage was set for a new round of redesigning, aimed not just at improving things for the driver, but for everyone else in the car as well.
Enter the brand new 2017 Mazda CX-5, with a plethora of changes, all based on what the CX-5 program manager described as “Refined Toughness.”
The front fascia has been remade, with the grille now being bordered by a strong silver design element (Mazda calls it a signature wing) along the lower edge.
The wing leads off into the headlights, while from above the hood juts forward over the edge of the grille—presumably, in addition to giving the front of the CX-5 the illusion of leaning forward, this also helps deflect air away from the cabin to help lower wind noise.
The headlights are slimmer, putting it closer to the design of the CX-9, but are a good deal longer, creating a more aggressive look. From there, the engineers broke out their rulers.
First, the front and rear tread were made 10mm wider to give the CX-5 a more planted stance (even though 10mm is only a little over a third of an inch). Then, the A pillars were moved back by 34mm (about 1 and a third inches) and the rear beltline was slightly lowered to increase visibility out the front and rear.
The CX-5 now is decked out in Mazda’s newly developed Soul Red Crystal paint color.
Moving inside, the dashboard has been redesigned, adding deep air vent louvers, bringing the 7-inch information display up higher, and adding an “Active Driving Display”—basically a head-up display that projects navigation information onto the windshield.
From there, the design team revamped the seats, in the front adding suspension mats in the seatbacks and urethane foam in the cushions to try to minimize body swaying, and in the rear seats adding a new two-step reclining mechanism, lower hip point, three-dimensional seat cushion shape, and available seat heaters and air vents.
Then, break out the rulers again, as the floor console has been raised, with the shift knob moved up 60mm to improve its usability.
As far as technology goes, Mazda added Mazda Connect (the brand’s phone connectivity system), while adding audio tweeters on the A pillars and an available co-designed Bose® speaker system.
One thing that is slightly changed is that the new CX-5 will be powered by the brand’s 2.5-liter SKYACTIV-G engine, which produces 184 hp and 185 lb-ft of torque. Previously, the CX-5 came with a choice of a 2.0-liter engine as well.
One definite change, though, is that the CX-5 will get the G-Vectoring control offered on the Mazda6, where engine torque is adjusted in response to steering wheel action to create a far more responsive driving experience and create less swaying in corners.
In addition, Mazda added rigid steering mounts and a new suspension system, which uses MacPherson struts in the front, a multi-link system in the back, and liquid-filled bushings to reduce the floating sensation for the driver and cabin vibration during body roll for the passengers.
The braking system now uses ventilated discs in the front, and the CX-5 has adopted the brand’s Auto-hold function, which will keep the SUV stopped after the driver lifts off the brakes.
Finally, the engineers worked to increase the body’s rigidity, increasing its resistance to torsion by 15.5%.
The new Mazda CX-5 will be on display at the LA Auto Show starting on the 18th, and will be rolled out to world markets after its Japan introduction in February.
Daniel Susco is a native of the Dayton-Cincinnati area, and has written on a multitude of subjects. He can discuss Shakespeare, expound on Classical Mythology, and even make witty jokes about Pliny the Elder (More like “Pliny the Rounder,” right?). In his free time, Daniel enjoys reading, cooking, woodworking, and long walks on the beach (just kidding – sunburn is no joke). See more articles by Daniel.