Mazda CX-9  | photo courtesy Midnight Productions Inc.

Mazda CX-9 | photo courtesy Midnight Productions Inc.

Car Manufacturer: Mazda
Model: 2013 Mazda CX-9
Suggested Retail Price: Starting at $29,785

As cars became smaller and SUVs became stale and conservative in their design, building a nice, robust vehicle stopped being a major priority. Thank goodness for Mazda, as the MAZDA CX-9 proves you can not only create a well put-together family vehicle but you can also create a gas conscious and space conscious car at the same time.

The CX-9 is a new generation SUV – one that can seat up to seven people, has ample leg room for everyone and also provides a safe, sturdy and fun ride.

We put the CX-9 to the test on a trip from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, to see how it handles various terrain, long trips and being trapped in endless Vegas traffic along the strip.

Additionally, we filled the vehicle with six people total as we drove around Vegas to determine comfortability and driving performance.

The consensus – the CX-9 is a winner on all fronts.

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

The biggest surprise – with a full tank of gas (which roughly added up between $40-$50 to fill up), the CX-9 made it to Vegas with gas to spare. That’s a major plus for people who like to travel.

Gas mileage is so tricky these days, but to have a vehicle this big that doesn’t guzzle gas is a major bonus for families.

Secondly, CX-9 drives like a charm. While driving through a back road shortcut to get on to the highway heading to Vegas, this vehicle handled the bumpy terrain with ease. Even the up and down mounds in the unevenly paved road were hardly felt.

Mazda CX-9 logo | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 logo | ©2013 Mazda

Space-wise, my daughter loved the leg room in the back seat, and also liked being able to control the central air and adjust it for to her preference.

Another big plus (but it took some getting used to), was the sensors on the outside of the car that warned when another vehicle is in the lane next to you. That way, if someone is driving too fast and comes out of nowhere as you’re turning lanes, you get a nice little warning to wait a second.

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

THE OUTSIDE

The CX-9 comes in many different colors, but we drove the Liquid Silver Metallic which looks super cool. It offers up a nice sheen and enhances the sleek exterior design.

More than most SUV’s, the CX-9 is huge, so even the doors open wide.

The only negative is gaining access to the trunk which took trial and error to figure out exactly when and how the trunk would open (generally it’s when the vehicle is turned off).

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

THE INTERIOR

Let’s talk about this interior. The front seats have ample leg room (which my wife loved) and are extremely comfortable and cushy. Each front seat has its own set of controls and the storage space is quite nice.

Sirius Radio, as always is a big bonus in newer vehicles, and was a major fixture on the drive to and from. The controls of the steering wheel allowed for easy cruise control as well as control of the volume on the radio.

The second row of seats, essentially look and feel like the front seats – with the above-mentioned ability to control the air in the back (this was a treat for everyone sitting in the middle seats and they really loved it).

There’s also the ability to move the seats forward and back to get more room. The leg space in the back is huge and really is another big benefit.

The back row houses two seats and this back row was a favorite of my daughter’s. Like many SUV’s, these two back seats are optional. Lower them down and you have instant trunk space for luggage and other trip essentials.

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

DRIVING PERFORMANCE

As I mentioned above, the driving performance is stellar. The CX-9 looks big and feels big at times, but it runs very smooth. Cruise control is a plus on long stretches of road heading to nowhere because you hardly feel the speed while driving. Usually cars this big are pushed around the road by wind or there’s tons of resistance, but this one handled it with ease.

Handling long stretches of Vegas strip traffic was also a plus. The vehicle is elevated high enough that you can see all your surroundings and comfortable enough, that being stuck in an endless barrage of traffic is still enjoyable.

I have to admit, I wasn’t a fan of the navigation system, which had trouble adjusting to quickly changing roads and freeways once in Vegas. In fact, on one occasion, the navigation was so wonky, we missed an exit due to a delay. That said, I didn’t experiment beyond that, so maybe the functionality is easier, once you get used to all of the controls and special features.

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

MISC.

One of my biggest pet peeves in new vehicles is the lack of front seat storage space, but the CX-9 has it spades. It has a closed space in between the two front seats that’s deep and can fit a ton of stuff. There’s also space underneath the air conditioning controls for extra cell phone storage.

The CX-9 also comes with a jack to hook your iPod directly into the stereo both with a USB cord and with a regular auxiliary jack.

PASSENGER’S VOTE

All five passengers loved the car and gave it positive marks for its size, feel and comfortability.

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

Mazda CX-9 | ©2013 Mazda

OVERVIEW

I can’t say enough great things about the Mazda 2013 CX-9. It’s a wonderful car, with fantastic driving performance and great gas mileage. It’s a great family vehicle and perfect for both long vacations and for trips around town.

For more information – click on link: MAZDA CX-9 website

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Article: Car Review – 2013 MAZDA CX-9

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