Mazda CX-5 – 2012 – 2021 Model Year Differences and Improvements

Mazda CX-5 is a compact crossover SUV manufactured by the Japanese company Mazda Motors from 2012 to the present. 

The production of the CX-5 began in 2012 but was released as a 2013 model. There are two generations of the CX-5 with the production of the second generation running from 2017.

The CX-5 was the first Mazda model built on Mazda’s KODO “Soul Motion” design and new SKYACTIV® engine technology that together brings about efficiency, lightweight construction, and agility. The CX-5 is an all-round family SUV that’s comfortable and fun-to-drive.

Let’s briefly take a look at what makes the CX-5 one of the best-selling Mazda models. Please read on. 

2012-2016

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The Mazda CX-5 was unveiled in 2012 as a 2013 model. It slotted in the compact SUV market segment and came in as a successor to the larger CX-7 and the Tribute.

The CX-5 was designed and built using Mazda’s KODO design language and SkyActiv engine technologies, which introduced new engines, transmissions, and chassis that improved the car’s efficiency and driving dynamics while decreasing emissions.

The first-generation CX-5 was available in three trim levels with their naming differing depending on the market. The standard engine on the Japanese market is was the twin-turbo 2.2-liter SkyActiv-D inline-4 diesel engine with 173 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque, and average fuel consumption of 22 km/l while other markets were served with a 2.0-liter SkyActiv-G inline-4 petrol engine with 155 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque with average fuel consumption of 10km/l. These engines were mated to a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission with front-wheel drive as standard and an all-wheel-drive system as an option.
In 2014, Mazda added a new 2.5-liter SkyActiv-G inline-4 petrol engine with 184hp and 186 lb-ft of torque to the CX-5 engine lineup. This engine had an almost similar fuel consumption to the 2.0-liter engine but with improved power.

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The 2013 CX-5 is stylish, comfortable, well-refined with an above-average driving experience. Standard features included a four-speaker audio system, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, and keyless entry. Additional features on the high-end models include a navigation system, leather upholstery, heated seats, and a power sunroof.

In 2016, the CX-5 received a mild update that gave it a bolder look more tech fittings, and revised equipment levels, which kept it on par with competing models.

Exterior changes include a revised ultra-fine grille, a new bumper, LED headlights, LED fog lights, and bigger side vents. At the rear, there’s a signature LED taillight, while other exterior changes include the introduction of new 19-inch rims and new colors. 

Interior changes include a redesigned dashboard, Mazda’s Human-Machine Interface (HMI) infotainment system with Bluetooth connectivity, better storage capacity, and an electronic parking brake. Another update followed that made a touchscreen navigation system and a rearview camera standard in all models except the base model.

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2017-Present

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In 2017, Mazda released the second generation of the CX-5, unveiling a car that is modern and aggressively looking.

Exterior changes include a facial with LED foglamps and dynamic steering LED headlamps, while at the rear it was fitted with aggressive-looking full LED taillamps. On the sides, the CX-5 resembles BMW crossovers. Its rear sloping roof and rear windows line create an impression that the car has limited rear headroom which is not the case. The car has enough head and legroom at the rear, with only the cargo area being affected by the sloppy roof.

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Standard features on the 2017 CX-5 include the Mazda Connect infotainment system, a four-speaker audio system with Bluetooth connectivity and two USB ports, 40/20/40 split-folding rear seats, and LED headlights. Optional features include sat-nav, DAB radio, dual-zone climate control, electric leather seats, an electric tailgate, a head-up display, and a heated steering wheel.

Models released from 2018 onwards added blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert and low-speed forward collision warning and mitigation safety features as standard.

In 2020 more safety features were made standard. These include lane departure warning, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, and forward-collision warning.

Under the hood, nothing change much, the CX-5 continued using the previously used engines which were the 2.0-liter PE-VPS I4 and 2.5-liter PY-VPS petrol and the 2.2-liter SH-VPTS twin-turbo diesel mated with the same six-speed manual or automatic transmissions.

In 2019, Mazda introduced a turbocharged 2.5-liter PY-VPTS inline-4 petrol engine with 250 hp. This engine was fitted on the higher trims of the CX-5.

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Conclusion

The Mazda CX-5 is a compact crossover SUV that’s ideal for buyers who need a car that’s good-looking, fun to drive, and practical for daily commutes. The compact SUV segment is an extremely tough category, but the CX-5’s sharp handling, efficiency, reliability, responsive performance are some of its main selling points.

Apart from being a car that is fun to drive, the CX-5 also offers good practicality and enough boot space.

Please visit BE FORWARD and check out our list of 600+ used Mazda CX-5 for sale.

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Written by: Samuel H. Mponezya

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