Mazda CX-5 (2012 – 2016) Review

Mazda CX-5 (2012 – 2016) At A Glance


+Economical and efficient. Comfortable ride. Well equipped as standard. Practical and spacious yet compact.

-2WD diesels on 17-inch wheels don't handle as well as the petrol model. Cabin is drab compared to the exterior. Increasing number of mechanical complaints.

Insurance Groups are between 15–21
On average it achieves 78% of the official MPG figure

It seems that every car maker is cashing in on the success of crossover models, but Mazda’s effort, the CX-5, isn’t just an also-ran. It manages to deliver everything that’s good about owning a full-sized SUV but in a package that’s well-styled, comfortable, easy to live with and cheap to run. It’s reasonably priced, too and so makes a good buy for those who want a sensible all-rounder.

Part of the appeal of the CX-5 is its look. It’s tall, bulky and purposefully styled, with a cabin that gives the feel of a proper off-roader.

The driving position is excellent, offering long range comfort and a commanding view of the road. However, despite its SUV pretentions it’s not much bigger than an everyday family hatchback. It’s more practical, though – the high up cabin means getting in and out is effortless plus there’s space for five and a cavernous boot.

As is the norm for crossover vehicles, both two-wheel drive and all-wheel drive variants are offered and there’s a choice of 2.0-litre petrol or 2.2-litre diesel - the latter of which is available with two power outputs.

Chances are that most will go for the lower-powered 150PS diesel engine – official economy is 61.4mpg and emissions are 119g/km in two-wheel drive form, making it the cleanest engine in the range. It’s also smooth and it offers useful everyday performance.

Standard equipment is impressive. Even entry level models get cruise control, automatic lights and wipers, alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control and Bluetooth. Moving up to higher equipment grades gets you more luxuries, such as leather upholstery, built-in satellite navigation and xenon headlights. All models get active safety gear, including collision mitigating braking. 

Mazda CX-5 2012 range Road Test and Video

Mazda CX-5 2015 facelift 2.2 SE-L Nav auto Road Test

Real MPG average for a Mazda CX-5 (2012 – 2016)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

29–56 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Mazda CX-5 turbo failure - should I keep my car or sell it?

"The turbo on my 2015 Mazda CX-5 has failed at 82,000 miles. I purchased the car new and it's been serviced by Mazda main dealers in accordance with the recommended service schedule. The repair costs are estimated at just under £2000. My questions are: 1) Am I being unrealistic in expecting Mazda to make a contribution? 2) Once the work is completed, is this an indicator that now is a good time to trade the car in?"
1) It's always worth a try, If the dealer is keen to retain your business, they will make a 'goodwill payment' application on your behalf. But given the age of the car, it'd probably be cheaper to find an independent Mazda specialist. A local independent will be just as good as your local dealer and the cost of the repair will be much lower. 2) The old shape CX-5 does appear to be increasingly susceptible to turbo problems. You may want to consider changing your car if you are concerned about reliability. You can see all reported faults with this model here:
Answered by Dan Powell

My car needs £12k+ worth of repairs and I've only owned it for a few months - what should I do?

"I have a 2014 Mazda CX-5, which I have owned for seven months. I purchased from a car trader. Last week, it failed very suddenly with loss of power and black smoke from the exhaust, there were no warning lights or other signs the car was not running as it should. I had to abandon it in the road and later it was recovered. My local garage believe it could be the turbo and potentially the DPF, repair would cost anything from £1700-£5000. I rang Mazda HQ and they advised to take to a Mazda dealer for diagnostics, so arranged recovery to local dealer. They have advised it will need a new turbo, engine and exhaust - costing £12,000 for parts alone. Obviously this outweighs the cars value. Any advice would be greatly received."
This reads like the car was faulty when you bought it from the trader. I would recommend contacting the trader and asking them to fix it. There is no liability with Mazda, because they didn't sell you the vehicle. But I would make a copy of the diagnostics report and present it to the trader to back-up your claim. Do not give them the original copies, as you will need these if you decide to make a legal case via the small claims court. For your consumer rights, see:
Answered by Dan Powell

mazda space saver

"I have been quoted: 'The Space Saver comes as a complete kit from the manufacturer and is a really great kit, and it fits perfectly where the normal blow up kit goes. It is supplied with an all new wheel surround that also incorporates gaps for the jack & brace that is part of the kit. The cost of this is £377.50 + VAT' This sounds OTT, compared with other mainstream manufacturers. What do you think? Is there a third party space saver kit available? Can you suggest any alternative options?"
Yes, Mazda charges a fortune for its aftermarket space saver spare kit. Your alternative is to try to piece something together with bits from or My Tyres (
Answered by Honest John

What spacious automatic should I get to replace my X5?

"I am having electrical issues with my BMW X5 so I'm Looking to change. I need a large, family friendly, easy to get in-and-out of car/4x4 with a smooth automatic gearbox. I only do 5k miles a year and a budget of up to £15k. I was thinking Mercedes ML, Audi Q7 or newer X5. Or would a 7 Series or Audi A8 be more reliable? any suggestions? Thanks "
I'd be hesitant about buying any of these cars for £15,000 - as you've discovered, they'll have the running costs of a much more expensive car and will cost a fortune when they go wrong. If you want a premium SUV, a Lexus RX 450h could be a good purchase - we have very few reports of issues with them and Lexus owners are generally very happy with their cars. Alternatively, I'd be inclined to look for something a bit newer and less premium. A Mazda CX-5 would be a good choice and your budget will get you a high-spec 2015 model.
Answered by Andrew Brady
More Questions

What does a Mazda CX-5 (2012 – 2016) cost?