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2019 Mazda CX-5 Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 8.4

The 2019 Mazda CX-5 has a stylish cabin with plenty of passenger space and good fit and finish.  It also comes with a decent amount of standard and available tech features, including newly optional Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. On the downside, its cargo area is among the smallest in the class, and the infotainment system has a learning curve.

  • "Mazda cabins always feel more premium than mainstream, full of classy touches such as the elegant chrome-surround vents, push-button start and a 7-inch infotainment touch screen in the 2019 CX-5." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "In addition to being quiet, the new CX-5's cabin is also quite pleasant. Designers eliminated more than 20 elements that created ‘visual noise’ from the outgoing CX-5's interior and made more extensive use of premium materials." -- Automobile Magazine (2017)
  • "Mazda increased functionality without dumbing down the CX-5's interior. The cabin is rich, truly a class above the competition and better than some so-called luxury crossovers." -- Car and Driver (2017)

Seating

The CX-5 can seat up to five people. Cloth upholstery, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and manually adjustable front seats are standard. Upgrades include leatherette upholstery with suede inserts, leather-trimmed seats, heated front and rear seats, ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, and power-adjustable front seats. Visibility is good for the driver, and the comfortable front seats have lots of space.

The rear seats don’t offer as much space as some rivals, but they have enough headroom for taller passengers. There are two sets of LATCH car-seat connectors on the rear outboard seats and an upper tether on the middle seat. The middle seat also has the ability to borrow lower anchors from the adjoining seats when they are not in use.

  • Like the competition, the rear seats are more comfortable for two rather than three, but at least the wide-opening doors make child seats easy to install and use." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • The cabin is very much driver-oriented, with excellent visibility and a superb driving position. The short center console and wide gap between the brake and dead pedals are a boon for tall drivers. It's slightly less friendly to backseat passengers since there's less room than in some rivals." -- Edmunds (2018)
  • "There's great headroom and good legroom in front, and the seat in the Grand Touring seemed more coddling than most. Rear-seaters also have great headroom, and my 5'9 frame had plenty of legroom remaining even with the seat ahead pushed all the way back." -- Consumer Guide (2017)

Interior Features

The CX-5’s standard infotainment system features a 7-inch touch screen, Bluetooth, HD Radio, voice command, two USB ports, and four speakers. The system is intuitive, but the controls located near the shifter can be awkward to use. Touch functionality is disabled when the car is moving, and the system can only be controlled by a rotary dial and a few buttons. For some functions, the minimalist controls turn small adjustments into multi-step processes. Push-button start, a rearview camera, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and low-speed automatic braking are also standard.

Options include a moonroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, two additional USB ports, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a six-speaker stereo or a 10-speaker Bose premium audio system, navigation, and satellite radio. You can also equip the CX-5 with numerous safety features, such as a 360-degree parking camera, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, forward collision warning, full-speed automatic braking, front and rear parking sensors, a head-up display, and traffic sign recognition.

  • "All controls are within the driver's reach. The center display loses touchscreen ability while the car is moving (it's controlled by an easy-to-use knob near the shifter) and doesn't wash out in sunlight. The driver armrests aren't tall enough to rest your elbow and still grip the steering wheel." -- Edmunds (2018)
  • Once the system is set up to personal preferences, and with extended seat time behind the wheel, it is fairly easy to use. The main flaws, in my opinion, are the awkward location of the volume control on the center console and the requirement to use the system to change stations or media sources." -- New York Daily News (2017)
  • Front and center sits a 7.0-inch dashboard display that's standard on all models and is operated by an Audi-like control knob on the center console. The screen also can be controlled by touch inputs but only when the car is stopped, although it's a far reach from either front seat." -- Car and Driver (2017)

Cargo

You'll find 30.9 cubic feet of cargo space when the rear seats are upright or 59.6 cubic feet when they are folded. While many shoppers should be content with the amount of space that the CX-5 provides, its maximum cargo capacity is slightly below average for the class. A power liftgate is available, which makes loading cargo easier.

  • Behind the second row is 30.9 cubic feet of luggage space, expanding to 59.6 when those 40/20/40-split/fold seats are completely down." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • Cargo space remains conservative, measuring 30.9 cubic-feet behind the rear seat and 59.6 cu.-ft. with the rear seat folded down." -- New York Daily News (2017)
  • Cargo and rear-seat space still lag slightly behind the boxy CR-V, but the space that's there is more usable." -- Car and Driver (2017)
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