That the 2019 Mazda CX-5 Diesel is simply now hitting showrooms now’s a little bit of a shock. For the higher a part of the last decade, Mazda    had promised a diesel engine for a US-market automobile — the truth is, it was initially destined for the Mazda6. However the Japanese automaker stated calibration and certification points have been the unique supply of delays, and people points have been made much more difficult by the Volkswagen Dieselgate scandal, which not solely elevated authorities oversight of diesel gas, however tarnished public notion of those powertrains.

So Mazda faces an uphill battle by launching a diesel-powered CX-5 within the 12 months 2019. Exterior of pickup vehicles, diesel engines at the moment are fairly scarce. And making issues extra difficult, Mazda’s Skyactiv-D engine is just being provided in the costliest CX-5 trim. Does that make this extra environment friendly CX-5 a worthy consideration, or is the diesel-powered Mazda principally useless on arrival?

Totally different with diesel

Any firm deciding to put in a diesel engine in a US-spec passenger automobile right now is definitely going towards the grain. Fittingly, Mazda isn’t any stranger to doing simply that, beforehand championing rotary and miller-cycle engine applied sciences. The results of Mazda’s diesel improvement work is a 2.2-liter twin-turbocharged I4 producing 168 horsepower and 290 pound-feet of torque. When outfitted with the diesel, the CX-5’s tow ranking jumps to three,500 kilos — a 1,500-pound improve over the gas-powered fashions. 

From an influence supply and harmonics standpoint, the CX-5’s diesel powerplant may be very spectacular. There’s some ever-so-slight diesel garble as you roll onto the throttle, with punchy thrust down low within the rev vary. It is also completely easy whereas spinning as much as the high-for-a-diesel 5,500-rpm redline, making fast work of freeway on-ramp merges.

Being a diesel, you’ll count on the CX-5 to pack some bladder-busting driving vary, proper? Sadly, that is not precisely the case. With a six-speed automated transmission and all-wheel drive, the EPA estimates the CX-5 Diesel to return 27 miles per gallon within the metropolis and 30 mpg on the freeway. I confirmed these numbers, simply averaging 30.1 mpg on tank of gas beneath largely freeway driving.

By the numbers

To its credit score, the CX-5 Diesel’s gas rankings are an enchancment over the CX-5’s 2.5-liter turbocharged I4 fuel engine, which will get 22 mpg metropolis and 27 mpg freeway. Exterior of barely higher effectivity and better tow capability, although, the remainder of the numbers do not go within the diesel’s favor a lot. 

The fuel engine’s 250 horsepower bests the diesel’s 168, which is par for the course, however the torque figures are much less so. With 310 pound-feet of torque, the fuel engine outmuscles the diesel’s 290, and each engines making peak twist at 2,000 rpm. Ouch. 

One other tough quantity connected to the CX-5 Diesel Signature is the worth premium it carries over the fuel automobile. Getting a range-topping Signature mannequin with the fuel engine prices $36,890, not together with $1,045 for vacation spot. Upgrading to the diesel bumps issues up by $four,110 for a $41,000 beginning value, which is plenty of coin whenever you’re solely getting a slight profit in gas economic system and towing. 

Getting the Skyactiv-D in your CX-5 will value you an additional $four,110.

Nick Miotke/Roadshow

Premium mix

Take the diesel engine out of the equation and the remainder of the automobile is every thing I’ve come to like about CX-5. It continues to be extra satisfying to drive than rivals just like the Honda CR-V, Nissan Rogue, Subaru Forester and Toyota RAV4. The steering within reason fast and communicative, physique lean is managed at turn-in, and there is a wholesome serving to of grip on the 19-inch Toyo tires, making it fairly a little bit of enjoyable to wheel round. Aside from bump stiffness being a contact firmer than different compact SUVs, the trip high quality is stable and comfy sufficient that it will not flip off most buyers.

The CX-5 can also be a good-looking satan, with its large grille, sloping nostril and delicate physique strains that notably pop when lined in my take a look at automobile’s Soul Pink paint. Whereas I admire the CR-V’s extra angular face and the rugged, extra squared-off look of the RAV4, I believe the CX-5 strikes the very best visible steadiness within the section. It is equal components elegant and aggressive.

The CX-5’s cabin may be very properly constructed, with Nappa leather-based and actual wooden trim.

Nick Miotke/Roadshow

The cabin is spacious up entrance, however rear-seat riders can be extra cramped right here than in competing automobiles. With wealthy, brown Nappa leather-based, high-quality soft-touch surfaces, actual wooden trim and a big record of normal options comparable to heated and cooled entrance seats, a head-up show (HUD) and a 360-degree digital camera, the CX-5 Signature makes a robust argument for being cross-shopped towards premium rivals. That is a great factor, since $40,000 is not a small sum of cash.

Tech enhancements

The CX-5’s infotainment system additionally will get a much-needed replace: The Mazda Join system lastly will get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Within the Signature trim, the 7-inch touchscreen and rotary jog dial on the middle console are used to regulate navigation, a 10-speaker Bose audio setup, satellite tv for pc radio and Bluetooth. 

Sadly, what you continue to will not discover within the CX-5 is a Wi-Fi hotspot or wi-fi charging pad. The sting of not having the latter is offset by the entrance space having quick access to 2 12-volt shops and a pair of USB ports, whereas back-seat riders have one other couple of two.1-amp USBs mounted within the middle armrest.

Elevating the CX-5 Signature’s security recreation are customary adaptive cruise management with stop-and-go performance, ahead collision warning with automated emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring, lane-departure warning with lane-keep help and entrance and rear parking sensors. 

How I would spec it

When constructing my preferrred Mazda CX-5 Diesel Signature, I would not throw too many extras at it as a result of it is already very nicely outfitted — accurately, for a car on this class carrying a $41,000 base value. I’d pony up for the $595 Soul Pink paint job to spotlight the SUV’s strains. And at last to extend utility and make use of the additional towing capability I’d tack on the $400 roof rack and $450 trailer hitch and wiring harness. With vacation spot, that bumps the underside line of my automobile to $43,490, making it a smidge extra inexpensive than the $44,335 take a look at automobile pictured right here.

Robust promote

Except you are an enormous diesel fan, the 2019 Mazda CX-5 Skyactiv-D Signature possible will not be all that interesting to you. Much less-than-stellar effectivity good points and barely higher towing capabilities in all probability will not be sufficient to make you pay the steeper value of admission. 

Exterior of die-hard diesel followers, the Mazda CX-5 Skyactiv-D will battle to win over clients.

Nick Miotke/Roadshow

This makes the diesel-powered mannequin a distinct segment providing in Mazda’s well-liked CX-5 lineup. Fortunately, that is a undeniable fact that Mazda acknowledges; the corporate expects diesels to account for not more than 10% of CX-5 gross sales. Even that gross sales break up could also be overly optimistic. However for diesel fanatics in quest of a small SUV — and keen to pay a premium — Mazda has you lined with a gorgeous, properly trimmed and entertaining-to-drive entry. For everybody else, saving a great chunk of change and getting the turbo fuel engine in a CX-5 might be the extra engaging route.

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