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Is the Mazda CX-5 Reliable?

The Mazda CX-5 is a compact crossover SUV that has gained immense popularity among Canadian consumers since its introduction in 2012. With its sleek design, engaging driving dynamics, and impressive fuel efficiency, the CX-5 has become a go-to choice for those seeking a practical and enjoyable driving experience. However, in addition to its appealing features, the reliability of a vehicle is a crucial factor that Canadian buyers heavily consider, given the challenging weather conditions and long distances they often face.


Reliability is a measure of a vehicle’s ability to perform consistently and without significant issues over an extended period. For Canadians, a reliable vehicle is essential, as breakdowns or frequent repairs can be not only inconvenient but also potentially dangerous, especially during harsh winter months. A dependable vehicle can provide peace of mind and minimize unexpected costs, making it a wise investment in the long run. As such, understanding the reliability of the Mazda CX-5 is crucial for Canadian consumers considering this popular SUV.

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Overview of Mazda CX-5

The Mazda CX-5 is a compact crossover SUV that has been in production since 2012. It was Mazda’s first vehicle to feature the brand’s KODO (Soul of Motion) design language, which emphasizes fluid movements and a sense of dynamism. The CX-5 quickly became one of Mazda’s best-selling models, renowned for its sleek styling, engaging driving dynamics, and practical interior.

Over the years, the CX-5 has undergone several updates and refreshes, but its core values of driving pleasure, efficiency, and quality have remained constant. The current generation, introduced in 2017, features a more premium interior, advanced safety technologies, and an available turbocharged engine for added performance.

Key features of the 2024 Mazda CX-5 include a standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine producing 187 horsepower, or an optional 2.5-liter turbocharged engine with up to 256 horsepower. All-wheel drive is standard, contributing to the CX-5’s confident handling and capability. Inside, the cabin boasts high-quality materials, comfortable seating for five, and a user-friendly infotainment system. Advanced safety features like adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, and automatic emergency braking are also available. 

 

Reliability Ratings and Sources

When it comes to evaluating the reliability of the Mazda CX-5, reputable sources like Consumer Reports and J.D. Power provide valuable insights. According to Consumer Reports, the Mazda CX-5 has consistently received high reliability ratings, with an overall score of 4.5 out of 5.0 for the latest model year. This places the CX-5 among the top-ranked midsize SUVs in terms of predicted reliability.

J.D. Power’s Vehicle Dependability Study also rates the Mazda CX-5 favorably, with a reliability score of 70 out of 100. This score places the CX-5 above many of its direct competitors in the same segment, such as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Subaru Forester.

 

Most Reliable Model Years

According to CopilotSearch, the most reliable model years for the Mazda CX-5 are the 2016 and 2017 model years. These years saw significant improvements in the vehicle’s overall build quality, with fewer reported issues compared to earlier models.

The 2016 Mazda CX-5 benefited from a refreshed exterior design and updated interior features, while maintaining the reliable SKYACTIV-G 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. This model year also introduced Mazda’s G-Vectoring Control system, which improved handling and stability. Additionally, the 2016 CX-5 received high marks for its strong crash test ratings and advanced safety features.

The 2017 Mazda CX-5 built upon the improvements of the previous year, with a more refined cabin and additional sound insulation for a quieter ride. This model year also saw the introduction of Mazda’s cylinder deactivation technology, which improved fuel efficiency without sacrificing performance. Overall, the 2017 CX-5 was praised for its solid build quality, responsive handling, and reliable powertrain.

 

Common Issues and Recalls

While the Mazda CX-5 is generally regarded as a reliable vehicle, it’s not immune to certain issues and recalls. According to RepairPal, there have been 8 recalls affecting various model years of the CX-5. Some of the most significant recalls include issues with the fuel system, brakes, and electrical components.

As for common problems reported by owners, a few stand out. Some owners have experienced issues with the infotainment system freezing or crashing, as well as problems with the transmission hesitating or jerking during shifts. Additionally, there have been reports of excessive wind noise and premature wear on certain suspension components.

It’s important to note that Mazda has addressed many of these issues through recalls and software updates. Owners should ensure that any outstanding recalls have been addressed and that their vehicle is up to date with the latest software and firmware updates from the manufacturer.

 

Comparative Analysis

When it comes to reliability, the Mazda CX-5 holds its own against rivals like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Subaru Forester. According to a comparison by YouTube car experts, the CX-5 is on par with these popular compact SUVs in terms of overall dependability.

One advantage the CX-5 has over its competitors is its refined driving experience and sporty handling, thanks to Mazda’s focus on driving dynamics. However, the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 may offer slightly more cargo space and a smoother ride, depending on individual preferences.

When it comes to long-term reliability, the Subaru Forester has a reputation for being a solid choice, but the CX-5 is not far behind. Owners on forums like Quora have reported generally positive experiences with the CX-5’s dependability, especially in recent model years.

Ultimately, the choice between the Mazda CX-5 and its rivals may come down to personal preferences in terms of driving dynamics, interior design, and brand loyalty. However, the CX-5 is a compelling option for those seeking a reliable, well-rounded compact SUV with a touch of driving enjoyment.

 

Maintenance Tips for Optimal Reliability

Adhering to the recommended maintenance schedule is crucial for ensuring the longevity and reliability of your Mazda CX-5. According to Mazda’s official maintenance guide, the CX-5 requires regular oil changes, tire rotations, and inspections at specific mileage intervals. Neglecting these services can lead to premature wear and potential issues down the line.

For Canadian owners, it’s essential to prepare your CX-5 for the varying seasonal conditions. During the winter months, consider using winter tires and ensuring that all fluids, including coolant and washer fluid, are rated for colder temperatures. Additionally, keep an eye on the battery health, as colder weather can strain its performance.

In the summer, pay attention to the condition of your tires and ensure they have adequate tread depth. Regular checks of the air conditioning system and cabin air filters can also help maintain a comfortable driving experience.

Regardless of the season, it’s crucial to use genuine Mazda parts and have your CX-5 serviced by trained technicians. Genuine parts are designed specifically for your vehicle, ensuring a perfect fit and optimal performance. According to CAREdge, the estimated maintenance cost for a Mazda CX-5 over 10 years is around $7,339, which is relatively reasonable for a vehicle in its class.

 

Climate Considerations

Canada’s diverse climate conditions, ranging from harsh winters to hot summers, can significantly impact the reliability of the Mazda CX-5. During the winter months, extreme cold temperatures, heavy snowfall, and icy roads can put additional strain on various components of the vehicle, such as the battery, tires, and suspension system.

To ensure optimal reliability in these conditions, it’s essential to winterize the Mazda CX-5 properly. As suggested by experienced owners on forums like MazdaForum.com, equipping the vehicle with winter tires designed for deep snow and icy conditions can significantly improve traction and handling, reducing the risk of accidents and undue wear on the vehicle’s components.

Additionally, regular maintenance checks and inspections are crucial during the winter months to ensure the battery, fluids, and other critical systems are functioning correctly. Owners should also be mindful of the potential for rust and corrosion due to road salt and moisture, which can compromise the vehicle’s longevity if not properly addressed.

In the summer months, the Mazda CX-5 may face challenges related to high temperatures and increased air conditioning usage. Proper maintenance of the cooling system, including regular coolant flushes and inspections, can help prevent overheating issues and extend the life of the engine and other components.

 

Owner Testimonials and Case Studies

To gain insight into the real-world reliability of the Mazda CX-5, it’s valuable to hear directly from Canadian owners who have lived with the vehicle for an extended period. Their experiences can shed light on how the CX-5 holds up over time and in various driving conditions across the country.

According to a discussion on the r/CX5 subreddit, many owners have reported positive experiences with the long-term reliability of their Mazda CX-5. One owner shared, “I am coming up on 100,000 miles [160,000 km] on my 2016 CX-5 GT and have had zero issues with it. It’s been a fantastic vehicle.” Another user echoed a similar sentiment, stating, “I have a 2017 CX-5 Touring with 85,000 miles [136,000 km] on it, and it’s been a very reliable vehicle so far.”

High-mileage stories like these showcase the CX-5’s ability to withstand the rigors of daily driving and rack up substantial kilometers without major issues. Owners have reported smooth-running engines, reliable transmissions, and minimal repairs beyond routine maintenance, even after surpassing the 100,000-kilometer mark.

Additionally, long-term ownership reviews from Canadian automotive publications and enthusiast forums provide valuable insights. A review from a Canadian automotive journalist who owned a 2017 CX-5 for over three years praised its dependability, stating, “Throughout my time with the CX-5, it never left me stranded or required any unexpected repairs, which is a testament to its reliability.”

 

Cost of Ownership

One of the key factors to consider when evaluating the reliability of a vehicle is the associated cost of ownership over the years. According to CAREdge, the Mazda CX-5 has an estimated maintenance and repair cost of $7,339 during its first 10 years of service. This figure is lower than the industry average for popular SUV models, making the CX-5 a relatively cost-effective option in its class.

When compared to its direct competitors, the Mazda CX-5 holds its ground in terms of long-term ownership costs. For instance, the Honda CR-V is estimated to cost around $7,200 for maintenance and repairs over the same period, while the Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester may incur slightly higher expenses, ranging from $7,500 to $8,000.

It’s worth noting that these estimates can vary based on factors such as driving habits, climate conditions, and adherence to the recommended maintenance schedule. Regular servicing and the use of genuine Mazda parts can help keep repair costs in check and ensure optimal reliability over the vehicle’s lifespan.

 

Future Outlook

Mazda has consistently demonstrated a strong commitment to improving the reliability and customer satisfaction of its vehicles, including the CX-5. With each new model year, the automaker introduces enhancements and addresses any potential issues identified in previous generations.

Looking ahead, the next-generation Mazda CX-5 is expected to incorporate a hybrid powertrain option, as confirmed by the company . This move towards electrification aligns with industry trends and could potentially improve fuel efficiency and overall reliability by reducing strain on the internal combustion engine.

Additionally, Mazda’s dedication to refining its SKYACTIV technology, which focuses on improving fuel economy and reducing emissions without compromising performance, is likely to continue. This could translate into further enhancements to the CX-5’s powertrain, suspension, and overall driving dynamics, contributing to a more reliable and enjoyable ownership experience.

Furthermore, Mazda’s commitment to customer satisfaction is evident in its efforts to address any issues promptly through recalls and service campaigns. The company values its reputation for reliability and is consistently working to improve the quality and durability of its vehicles, including the CX-5.

 

Buying Tips for Canadian Consumers

When it comes to buying a used Mazda CX-5 in Canada, it’s essential to be vigilant and take the necessary precautions. One of the best options is to opt for a Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) vehicle from a Mazda dealership, as recommended by Reddit users. These CPO vehicles undergo a rigorous 160-point inspection and come with a 7-year/140,000 km limited powertrain warranty, providing added peace of mind.

Mazda’s CPO program also includes 24/7 emergency roadside assistance, a comprehensive vehicle history report, and a complimentary three-month satellite radio subscription. Additionally, Mazda dealers offer attractive financing rates and extended warranties for CPO vehicles, making them a cost-effective option for Canadian buyers.

If you’re considering a non-CPO used Mazda CX-5, it’s crucial to have a qualified mechanic inspect the vehicle thoroughly. Look for signs of proper maintenance, such as regular oil changes and tire rotations. Additionally, review the vehicle’s history report and ensure there are no outstanding recalls or major accidents on record.

 

Conclusion

Based on the information gathered from various sources, the Mazda CX-5 can be considered a reliable choice for Canadian consumers. According to Edmunds, the CX-5 remains one of the best small SUVs on the market, offering a high level of reliability and dependability.

While no vehicle is perfect, the Mazda CX-5 has consistently received above-average reliability ratings from reputable organizations like Consumer Reports and J.D. Power. Its well-built interior, efficient engines, and Mazda’s commitment to quality control contribute to its overall reliability.

For Canadian consumers seeking a reliable and practical SUV that can handle the country’s diverse climate conditions, the Mazda CX-5 emerges as a strong contender. With proper maintenance and care, as outlined in this guide, the CX-5 can provide years of reliable service and enjoyable driving experiences.

Ultimately, the decision to purchase a Mazda CX-5 should be based on individual needs and preferences, but its proven track record of reliability, combined with its impressive features and driving dynamics, make it a compelling choice for Canadian families and individuals alike.

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Questions About Mazda CX-5 Reliability

The Mazda CX-5 is widely regarded as a highly reliable compact SUV. It consistently receives above-average reliability ratings from reputable organizations like Consumer Reports and J.D. Power. The CX-5’s well-built interior, efficient engines, and Mazda’s commitment to quality control contribute to its overall dependability.

 

Many owners have reported few issues with their CX-5, even after surpassing the 100,000-kilometer mark. High-mileage stories and positive long-term ownership reviews from automotive journalists and enthusiasts further solidify the CX-5’s reputation for reliability.

According to various sources, the most reliable model years for the Mazda CX-5 are typically the 2016, 2017, and 2018 model years. These years saw significant improvements in the vehicle’s overall build quality, with fewer reported issues compared to earlier models.

 

The 2016 CX-5 benefited from a refreshed design and updated features, while the 2017 model introduced cylinder deactivation technology for improved fuel efficiency. The 2018 model year continued to build upon the improvements of the previous years, solidifying the CX-5’s reputation for reliability.

When it comes to reliability, the Mazda CX-5 holds its own against rivals like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Subaru Forester. In fact, the CX-5 is often on par or slightly ahead of these popular compact SUVs in terms of overall dependability.

 

While the CR-V, RAV4, and Forester may offer slightly more cargo space or a smoother ride, the CX-5 stands out with its refined driving experience and sporty handling, thanks to Mazda’s focus on driving dynamics. Ultimately, the choice between these vehicles may come down to personal preferences and brand loyalty.

While generally reliable, some owners have reported issues with the Mazda CX-5’s infotainment system freezing or crashing. Additionally, there have been reports of transmission hesitation or jerking during shifts, excessive wind noise, and premature wear on certain components like brakes and suspension parts.

 

It’s important to note that Mazda has addressed many of these issues through recalls and software updates. Owners should ensure that any outstanding recalls have been addressed and that their vehicle is up to date with the latest software and firmware updates from the manufacturer.

To maximize the reliability of your Mazda CX-5, it’s crucial to adhere to the recommended maintenance schedule. Regular oil changes, tire rotations, and inspections at specific mileage intervals can prevent premature wear and potential issues down the line.

 

Additionally, using genuine Mazda parts and having your CX-5 serviced by trained technicians can ensure optimal performance and longevity. Preparing your vehicle for seasonal changes, such as equipping winter tires and checking fluid levels, can also contribute to its overall reliability.

According to various sources, the Mazda CX-5 has an estimated maintenance and repair cost of around $7,339 during its first 10 years of service. This figure is lower than the industry average for popular SUV models, making the CX-5 a relatively cost-effective option in its class.

 

When compared to its direct competitors, the CX-5 holds its ground in terms of long-term ownership costs. The Honda CR-V is estimated to cost around $7,200 for maintenance and repairs over the same period, while the Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester may incur slightly higher expenses, ranging from $7,500 to $8,000.

When buying a used Mazda CX-5 in Canada, it’s recommended to opt for a Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) vehicle from a Mazda dealership. These CPO vehicles undergo a rigorous 160-point inspection and come with a 7-year/140,000 km limited powertrain warranty, providing added peace of mind.

 

Mazda’s CPO program also includes attractive financing rates, extended warranties, and additional benefits like roadside assistance and vehicle history reports. If considering a non-CPO used CX-5, it’s crucial to have a qualified mechanic inspect the vehicle thoroughly and review its history report for any outstanding issues or major accidents.

Canada’s diverse climate conditions, ranging from harsh winters to hot summers, can impact the reliability of the Mazda CX-5. During the winter months, extreme cold temperatures, heavy snowfall, and icy roads can put additional strain on various components, such as the battery, tires, and suspension system.

 

To ensure optimal reliability in these conditions, it’s essential to winterize the CX-5 properly, including equipping it with winter tires designed for deep snow and icy conditions. Regular maintenance checks and inspections are also crucial to ensure the battery, fluids, and other critical systems are functioning correctly.

 

In the summer months, the CX-5 may face challenges related to high temperatures and increased air conditioning usage. Proper maintenance of the cooling system, including regular coolant flushes and inspections, can help prevent overheating issues and extend the life of the engine and other components.

For Canadian owners, it’s essential to prepare the CX-5 for varying seasonal conditions. During the winter months, consider using winter tires and ensuring that all fluids, including coolant and washer fluid, are rated for colder temperatures. Additionally, keep an eye on the battery health, as colder weather can strain its performance.

 

In the summer, pay attention to the condition of your tires and ensure they have adequate tread depth. Regular checks of the air conditioning system and cabin air filters can also help maintain a comfortable driving experience.

 

Regardless of the season, it’s crucial to use genuine Mazda parts and have your CX-5 serviced by trained technicians. Genuine parts are designed specifically for your vehicle, ensuring a perfect fit and optimal performance.

The CX-5 is consistently one of Mazda’s most reliable vehicles, often outperforming models like the Mazda3 and Mazda6 in reliability surveys. Mazda’s commitment to quality control and attention to detail has contributed to the CX-5’s strong reputation for dependability.

 

While no vehicle is perfect, the CX-5’s well-built interior, efficient engines, and Mazda’s focus on driving dynamics have helped it stand out as a reliable choice within the brand’s lineup. Owners have reported smooth-running engines, reliable transmissions, and minimal repairs beyond routine maintenance, even after surpassing the 100,000-kilometer mark.

The Mazda CX-5’s powertrain, which includes the engine and transmission, is generally regarded as highly reliable. The CX-5 is available with a standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine or an optional 2.5-liter turbocharged engine, both of which have proven to be dependable and durable.

 

Many owners have reported smooth operation and minimal issues with the CX-5’s powertrain, even after racking up substantial mileage. Mazda’s commitment to refining its SKYACTIV technology, which focuses on improving fuel economy and reducing emissions without compromising performance, has contributed to the powertrain’s reliability.

The Mazda CX-5 represents a significant improvement in reliability compared to its predecessor, the Mazda Tribute. The Tribute, which was a joint project with Ford and based on the Ford Escape, had a mixed reliability record, with some model years being more problematic than others.

 

In contrast, the CX-5 was designed and engineered entirely by Mazda, incorporating the brand’s latest technologies and quality control measures. This has resulted in a more reliable and dependable vehicle, with fewer reported issues and higher customer satisfaction ratings than the Tribute.

The Mazda CX-5’s strong reputation for reliability can positively impact its resale value. Vehicles with a proven track record of dependability and low maintenance costs tend to hold their value better than those with a history of frequent issues or expensive repairs.

 

As the CX-5 continues to age well and demonstrate its long-term reliability, it is likely to maintain a higher resale value compared to less reliable competitors in the compact SUV segment. This can make the CX-5 a more attractive option for buyers in the used car market, as they can expect a reliable vehicle with plenty of life left in it.

The Mazda CX-5 comes with a comprehensive warranty package that provides peace of mind for new owners. The standard warranty includes a 3-year/unlimited-kilometer bumper-to-bumper warranty, a 5-year/unlimited-kilometer powertrain warranty, and a 7-year/unlimited-kilometer anti-perforation warranty.

 

Additionally, Mazda offers a Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) program for used CX-5 models, which includes a 7-year/140,000-kilometer limited powertrain warranty from the original in-service date. This extended warranty coverage can provide added assurance for those purchasing a used CX-5, further reinforcing its reputation for reliability.



In its price range, the Mazda CX-5 is often regarded as one of the most reliable options available. While some competitors may offer slightly lower sticker prices, the CX-5’s long-term reliability and lower maintenance costs can make it a more cost-effective choice in the long run.

 

Compared to vehicles from mainstream brands like Honda, Toyota, and Subaru, the CX-5 holds its own in terms of reliability ratings and owner satisfaction. Additionally, the CX-5 offers a more engaging driving experience and premium interior quality, making it a compelling choice for those seeking a balance of reliability, performance, and upscale features.

A vehicle’s reliability can have a direct impact on insurance costs. Insurers often view reliable vehicles as less of a risk, as they are less likely to require frequent repairs or replacement due to breakdowns or accidents.

 

The Mazda CX-5’s strong reputation for reliability can potentially result in lower insurance premiums compared to less reliable competitors. Insurance companies factor in a vehicle’s safety ratings, repair costs, and likelihood of being involved in an accident when determining insurance rates. The CX-5’s dependability and advanced safety features can make it an attractive option for insurers, potentially leading to more affordable insurance costs for owners.

The Mazda CX-5 is equipped with a range of advanced safety features, and these systems are generally regarded as reliable and dependable. Features like adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, and automatic emergency braking are designed to operate consistently and accurately, providing an added layer of protection for the driver and passengers.

 

While no technology is perfect, Mazda’s commitment to quality control and rigorous testing ensures that these safety features are reliable and function as intended. Regular maintenance and software updates can further enhance their reliability and ensure they continue to perform optimally throughout the vehicle’s lifespan.

Within the Mazda lineup, the CX-5 is consistently one of the brand’s most reliable models. While other vehicles like the Mazda3 and Mazda6 have their own strengths, the CX-5 stands out for its dependability and overall ownership experience.

 

Mazda’s focus on quality control and attention to detail has contributed to the CX-5’s strong reliability ratings. From its well-built interior to its efficient powertrain, the CX-5 is designed to provide a reliable and enjoyable driving experience for years to come.



While the Mazda CX-5’s infotainment system and technology features are generally reliable, some owners have reported issues with the system freezing or crashing. However, Mazda has addressed many of these concerns through software updates and recalls, ensuring that the infotainment system continues to function smoothly.

 

It’s important to note that technology features can be more susceptible to glitches and bugs than mechanical components, but Mazda’s commitment to addressing these issues promptly has helped maintain the overall reliability of the CX-5’s infotainment and technology features.



When it comes to long-term ownership costs, the Mazda CX-5 is a relatively cost-effective option in its class. According to various sources, the CX-5 has an estimated maintenance and repair cost of around $7,339 during its first 10 years of service, which is lower than the industry average for popular SUV models.

 

Compared to its direct competitors like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Subaru Forester, the CX-5 holds its ground in terms of long-term ownership costs. While some rivals may have slightly lower maintenance costs, the CX-5’s overall reliability and lower repair expenses can make it a more cost-effective choice over the long run.

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