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2013 Mazda CX-5: Not completely terrible for a crossover

Illustration for article titled 2013 Mazda CX-5: Not completely terrible for a crossover

Remember the Mazda Tribute? Of course you don't and it's gone and you don't care. In its place is the Mazda CX-5. It might be a boring crossover, but it's still a worthy one thanks to some solid new engines and an optional six-speed manual.

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"Six-speed manual?!" Crossover fans spit through their Big Gulp. Yep. And with that, FWD and the 2.0-liter "SkyActive-G" you'll be able to get 33 MPG Highway out of the five-seater.

That silly name comes attached to a fairly high-tech engine. High-pressure direct fuel injection brings 155 HP and 150 Lb-Ft. Not bad for a nice looking little crossover that should start under $20k.

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AWD, slushmatic models will likely be more popular, largely because it's nearly impossible to consume both a Big Mac and Big Gulp while also shifting gears like a communist. They'll also get lower fuel economy, and not just because their drivers are fat slobs. Expect highway fuel economy to drop to 30 MPG if you're under the belief that you need AWD because it sometimes snows where you live.

Also backing up the new KODO design language, which compliments the no-longer-Escape-based CX-5, is a turbodiesel engine we hear is capable of being sold in the U.S. without a urea filter. The engine produces upwards of 300-lb-ft of torque and gets better than 40 mpg (on the crazy Japanese test), though no guarantee it's coming here.

But yeah, if you, you know, like cars and stuff, there's not much to see here unless you're shopping for your mom. Move along.

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DISCUSSION

rjnerd
Jeff DelPapa

What is it with mazda and the number 5? They renamed the MPV to mazda5, now they have a CX-5, (and of course the MX-5 that the rest of the world calls the Miata). They aren't anything alike, nor do the share the same engine (which might be a reason to use the same -5 suffix)

Not related to this, but why do vendors not do towing on small vehicles? The last car search was for a small cargo carrier. Candidates were the Scion xb, the Ford transit connect, and the mazda5. None of them were rated to tow, not even something too light to be useful (like 1000 lb).

(end result was the mazda5, still wish it could have been the toyo estima)