The 2022 Mazda CX-5 Adds Smooth Styling, Standard All-Wheel Drive

  • The 2022 Mazda CX-5 compact SUV gets some visual and mechanical changes.
  • The more elegant appearance of the CX-5 is highlighted by the updated front and rear ends with sleek surfaces.
  • Mazda drops the front-wheel-drive CX-5 model, making all-wheel drive standard.

    Boasting a resume that includes Mazda’s best-selling model in the US and earning multiple appearances on our annual 10Best list, the 2022 CX-5 compact crossover receives a subtle, albeit meaningful, update.

    While it might be hard to notice without a side-by-side comparison with last year’s model, the already attractive bodywork of the 2022 CX-5 has been massaged into something more elegant. Not only are its LED headlights more distinctive, but its grille becomes more prominent thanks to the wings that move outwards towards the headlights and a new textured mesh. The lower front fascia still looks smooth, with the same streamlining visible along with the redesigned LED taillights at the rear of the SUV. A new set of wheel designs are also part of the visual development.

    The 2022 CX-5 lineup remains largely unchanged, but the previous Grand Touring Reserve trim has been replaced by a new 2.5 Turbo model, which makes reference to its 250-hp 2.5-liter turbo inline-four engine. The Turbo slots in between the Grand Touring and Signature trims. It gets gloss-black exterior bits along with red accents and stitching on the inside. The Signature also looks more upscale, as Mazda has replaced the plastic cladding around the wheel wells with a body-colored piece. All models add new seats that are said to be more supportive, and now have a wider selection of drive-mode settings. Previously, a single Sport mode was the only performance adjustment.

    It is also no longer possible to order a CX-5 with front-wheel drive. Every version now comes standard with Mazda’s i-Active all-wheel-drive system. All four wheels are powered by either the 187-hp naturally aspirated 2.5-litre inline-four-cylinder base engine or the available turbocharged 2.5-litre four-pot. While both engines are unchanged and are still paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, Mazda says the gearbox has been revamped to be more responsive. Similarly, an increase in the CX-5’s suspension and a more rigid frame is said to improve its noise, vibration and stiffness (NVH) levels, which should provide a quieter cabin and a smoother ride.

    Mazda hasn’t released pricing for the 2022 CX-5 lineup, but with the new standard all-wheel-drive system, we expect the earlier $1400 option to be baked into the cost. The 2021 CX-5 AWD lineup currently ranges from the $27,945 Sport model to the $38,680 Signature, so expect the 2022 models to cost a little more than that when they reach dealerships this winter.

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