The 2021 Mazda CX-5 is forging on with a few minor changes, including slightly higher base prices compared to last year’s model. But in essence, the Mazda CX-5 is one of the finest five-seat crossovers you can buy today, and we say that in high regard to the Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, and Subaru Forester to name a few.
It’s easy to know why the CX-5 is Mazda’s bestselling vehicle in the USA. It merrily combines sophisticated design, a premium cabin, and dynamic reflexes – the three main ingredients for a great family car. In addition to that, the CX-5 is also one of the safest SUVs on the market. “We are proud to be the top 2020 IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK+ award recipient,” said Jeff Guyton, Mazda President. “It’s a big accomplishment and stems from our commitment to our owners.”
Safety Is Paramount
Every CX-5 is standard with i-Activesense, Mazda’s suite of driver assistance features. The package includes radar cruise control with stop & go functions, advanced smart city brake support with pedestrian detection, smart brake support, lane-keeping assist, lane departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert.
“Always keeping our customers in mind, Mazda is dedicated to providing the most advanced safety technologies, giving our customers a more enjoyable and confident driving experience,” Guyton added.
2021 Mazda CX-5: What’s New
Not much is new for the CX-5 in the styling department. It still has those sensuous body lines that, according to Mazda, create a sense of motion, power, and beauty. With due respect to the gorgeous Mazda 6 sedan, the CX-5 is the essence of Mazda’s Kodo “sense of motion” design philosophy, making it stand out amongst a herd of pretenders or look-alikes. If you’re new to the crossover genre, take a look at the CX-5, and you be the judge.
New for 2021 is a (thankfully) larger 10.25-inch center display with a three-year trial of Mazda Connect – which means having the ability to remotely control or view the status of your CX-5 using the MyMazda app. The Wi-Fi hotspot comes with a three-month or 2GB trial. You also have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, which is nice.
Also new is a limited Carbon Edition trim. If you like gray, you’ll drool over the CX-5 Carbon Edition’s Polymetal Gray paint, black 19-inch alloy wheels, and gloss black exterior accents.
Engine & Powertrain
The 2021 Mazda CX-5 has a standard Skyactiv-G 2.5-liter four-cylinder under the hood. The engine pumps out 187 horsepower and 186 lb-ft. of torque on regular 87 octane or premium 93 octane juice. The Skyactiv-G mill is mated to a six-speed automatic driving the front wheels while all-wheel drive is optional across the range. Front-wheel drive models receive Mazda’s G-Vectoring control to deliver better traction despite the absence of engine-driven wheels.
Mazda’s Skyactiv-G 2.5-liter turbo engine is also available for certain trim levels. On a diet of premium fuel, it cranks out 250 horsepower and 320 lb-ft. of torque. If you feed it with regular unleaded, the engine still churns out a healthy 227 horsepower and 310 lb-ft. of torque.
2021 Mazda CX-5: Trim Levels
The CX-5 is available in seven trim levels, including the new Carbon Edition and Cardon Edition turbo trim. Pricing information is included with each trim level below. Add an additional $1,100 for destination and handling or $1,145 if you live in Alaska.
Right off the bat, it’s costlier than a base CR-V or Forester, but the RAV4 still costs a bit more initially. Despite this, you get a leather steering wheel and shift knob, push-button start, electronic parking brake, remote keyless entry, a rearview camera, automatic on/off LED headlights, and 17-inch alloy wheels. It also has a rear spoiler, cloth seats, high beam control, Bluetooth connectivity, and rain-sensing windshield wipers.
MSRP FWD: $25,270
MSRP AWD: $26,670
The 2021 Mazda CX-5 Touring begins where the Sport model ends. The Touring includes heated front seats wrapped in premium leatherette, dual-zone climate control, rear air vents, additional charging ports for rear passengers, auto-leveling LED headlights, a six-speaker audio system, and advanced keyless entry.
The Touring Preferred SV Package costs an additional $1,445. It adds more premium stuff like a power moonroof, leather upholstery, a power liftgate, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, power front seats with memory, and a 10-speaker Bose audio system.
MSRP FWD: $27,010
MSRP AWD: $28,410
CX-5 Carbon Edition & Carbon Edition Turbo
The 2021 Mazda CX-5 Carbon Edition starts at $28,855 and comes with bespoke gray paint, 19-inch black alloy wheels, and red leather seats on top of the Touring Preferred SV Package. Meanwhile, the Carbon Edition Turbo includes all the niceties above but with a more powerful turbo engine.
MSRP Carbon Edition FWD: $28,855
MSRP Carbon Edition AWD: $30,255
MSRP Carbon Edition Turbo FWD: $30,660
MSRP Carbon Edition Turbo AWD: $32,060
CX-5 Grand Touring
Stepping up to the CX-5 Grand Touring gives you all the goodies from the Touring Preferred SV Package but includes steering wheel paddle shifters, LED taillights and fog lights, adaptive LED headlights, and 19-inch silver alloys. The CX-5 Touring is only available with the standard 2.5-liter naturally-aspirated engine.
MSRP FWD: $30,460
MSRP AWD: $31,860
The GT Premium Package is available for the Grand Touring for an additional $1,625.
CX-5 Grand Touring Reserve
The 2021 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring Reserve is only available with the turbocharged engine and all-wheel drive. Starting at $35,285, this model includes a heads-up display, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, automatic folding mirrors, and a windshield wiper de-icer.
Similar to Grand Touring Reserve, the 2021 Mazda CX-5 Signature is only available with the turbo engine and all-wheel drive. The Signature trim starts at $37,405 and comes with 19-inch dark silver wheels, premium Nappa leather seats, original wood trim, a black headliner, and ambient lighting. You also get more safety tech, including smart city brake support, driver attention alert, and traffic sign recognition.
2021 Mazda CX-5 Availability
The first deliveries of the new CX-5 will be arriving in September. In the meantime, please take advantage of our convenient car shopping tools to see which dealers in your area are offering the best discounts and incentives. We also have a comprehensive guide to Mazda’s warranty to help you as well.
Alvin Reyes is the Associate Editor of Automoblog. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.