Mazda ain’t slowing down. The first generation CX-5 received a mid-cycle facelift for 2017 model year. Well, we thought it was mid-cycle, but it isn’t. Mazda is already preparing all new generation. Maybe it’s a bit too early, but since CX-5 is a real money maker for Mazda, this isn’t such a surprising move. The sales are only going skyrocket high, so, to even more establish itself in mid-size SUV segment, this might be the right move. We, unfortunately, don’t have exclusive photos of 2018 Mazda CX-5, but it looks like spy photographers never sleep.
2018 Mazda CX-5 – Design
Mazda CX-5 is praised for good driving ability, so as for the platform, it will be the same as before. Maybe slightly revised for even more improvement, but there won’t be (for now, keep reading) something spectacularly new. New CX-5 on the photos has a camouflage that really gets you dizzy just by looking at it. But when were looking long enough, eyes were accustom to, so we can spot some details. It’s still Mazda’s KODO design language, which is not a bad thing, but some differences have taken place. On the front, we can see slimmer LED headlights that flow into upper part of the front grille. Something similar to new CX-9.
Apart from the vertical line grille new CX-5 has mesh, at least the one captured in the photos. Glass surfaces look the same as before but more elegant. Even when all new generation is in question, Mazda doesn’t want to stray from success path when they know that their KODO design language is quite a masterpiece.
2018 Mazda CX-5 – Interior
The interior is still a complete mystery. But there are things we strongly expect from new 2018 Mazda CX-5. Other models like Mazda 3, Mazda 6 and CX-8 received new dash. On the facelift for 2017 CX-5, the dash was the same as before. So we really think that completely new dashboard will finally take its place in new CX-5. It will probably be similar to the one on CX-9. Also, a heads-up display is expected with traffic sign recognition. Not only that but also heated steering wheel and of course Mazda’s MZD Connect infotainment system.
This mid-size family SUV wasn’t at the top when it comes to vast interior space. But even from the outside, there are no significant changes that can point to the roomier cabin, we think that new model will certainly have more space inside at least more legroom. There are some saying that trunk space will be slightly improved as well.
2018 Mazda CX-5 – Same Engines
Everyone knows that Mazda keeps special attention on their SKYACTIV technology. But Mazda CEO Masamichi Kogai recently told that new, more efficient platform and powertrain technology will be introduced in early 2019. So 2018 Mazda CX-5 won’t be coming with new powertrains. So the current 2.0-liter and 2.5-liter engines are here to stay. But we are certain that engineers have revised them for slightly more horsepower and better fuel technology.
There is also a 2.2-liter diesel on some markets as well. This is important since Kogai also said one more thing. The company is not giving up on its plans to bring its Skyactiv-D diesel engine to the United States. Although it is not certain but maybe 2018 Mazda CX-5 will be the first model to offer diesel variant in the US. And that’s not all, a CX-9’s 2.5-liter 4-cylinder turbo engine can fit under the hood of CX-5. So some even say that there might be even more powerful CX-5. The new model will continue to be offered in FWD and AWD and possibly a manual transmission will also stay.
Update – 5/17/2017 – Mazda confirmed CX-5 diesel for the U.S.
2018 Mazda CX-5 – Safety
Mazda is taking safety very seriously. This is supported by the fact that when their car doesn’t have the highest marks in the crash test, they immediately take steps to improve. When CX-5 arrived for 2013 model year, it scored all “G” (good) ratings except in the small overlap crash test conducted by the IIHS. And right after that, next year, the result went from “M” (marginal) to “G” (good). Thus in the next three years, CX-5 received Top Safety Pick+ award. So there is no concern that new model will fall in the “eyes” of IIHS.
But there is a thing that is a little concern and it is related to visibility of headlights. With halogen projectors, visibility was “P” (poor) and with LED ones “M” (marginal). So we’ll have to wait and see has Mazda improved this segment.
2018 Mazda CX-5 – Rivals
We expect that new CX-5 will arrive in the beginning of 2018 since sales of 2017 model year will start in the spring of 2017. Although early to talk about price, we think that starting price will remain close to the current one. Nevertheless, 2018 Mazda CX-5 will have a tough job since competitors aren’t sleeping. And they are Chevrolet Equinox, Honda C-RV, Toyota RAV4, Ford Escape and others.