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Mazda CX-5 AWD Sport

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Text and photos by Neil Pagulayan

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Mazda may not be a brand that’s in the public consciousness as much. Though most of the people who enter their showrooms already know what they want.  Those who don’t, will want one soon after. This week, we look at the all-new Mazda CX-5 AWD Sport.

The previous generation CX-5 was an exceptional vehicle, but I’ve always felt there was something missing, but I just couldn’t put my finger on it.  It turns out, this latest CX-5 has it sorted out, fixed up the front end and it looks really good.

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Under the hood is the same 2.5L Skyactiv-G engine, output still at 190-Hp with 250-Nm of torque. It’s now mated to a pretty good six-speed automatic gearbox. This spec seems about just right for this size of vehicle.If you feel you want a little more power, there’s always the sport button.

Inside, the CX-5 is luxuriously appointed. Touches like leather all around, its visible stitching, dark interior, soft touch materials with piano black and brushed aluminum accents would appeal to those with sophisticated taste. Mazda’s engineers made a science of putting everything within reach of the driver and the tilt and telescopic adjustable steering wheel makes finding the perfect driving position easy, and the same applies to all their cars.  Learning your way around the many knobs and buttons will be quick and easy as they’re logically placed, and relate to their function.

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If you love your music this is the perfect vehicle for you as you’ll be able to connect your music player in a multitude of ways to the seven-inchtouchscreen entertainment system.Of course the 10-speaker Bose system will never disappoint and you’ll find yourself oblivious to traffic and idiot drivers around you. If there are ever days you want to let in some fresh air, there’s the power sunroof.

Mazda’s suite of safety features includes airbags, anti-lock braking system (ABS) with electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD) and brake assist, dynamic stability control (DSC), and parking sensors with a rear view camera. Itseven more advanced safety features are the heads updisplay, the Blind Spot Monitoring System, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keep Assist and the Adaptive LED headlights.

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The CX-5 is as fun to drive as the rest of Mazda’s line up of cars. Steering is responsive, quick and predictable.You still feel the grip on the road at high speeds. When you’re at highway speeds, throttle response is almost instant when passing other cars. Handling hasn’t changed much from the previous generation, the addition of G-Vectoring Control to its All Wheel Drive system improves response to steering input when going around corners, making for a smoother, confident drive.

The CX-5 we got to test had Mazda’s premium Soul Red paint option which is a rich and deep red, probably one of the best shades of red available in the local market. This variant, the AWD Sport, is priced at the higher end of the crossover segment at P1,895,000 (+16,800 for Soul Red or Machine Grey).

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Why would you choose this SUV?  Well, this is not your ordinary crossover SUV, it has class and snob appeal. It’s one vehicle that really speaks volumes on its own, just give it a chance to speak to you.

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