Mazda CX-5 have been dominating the SUV market since their introduction back in 2012. The 1st gen CX-5 proved that a SUV not necessarily have to be a boring. Previously, the most powerful CX-5 you can buy is the 2.2 Diesel variant. In October 2019, Mazda Malaysia officially launch the most powerful variant of the CX-5, the 2.5 Turbo variant. Let’s ask the question, do we need a more powerful CX-5 variant?

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Since the Mazda CX-5 has been a common sight on Malaysian roads, that muscular yet elegant look have continue to look fresh 2 years on since the new CX5 was launched. The only way to spot the CX5 that comes with the 2.5 Turbo engine is the 2.5 T badge at the back of the SUV. Other components around the 2.5 Turbo CX-5 like the signature LED headlights and taillights, and the 225/55 R19 rims and tyres are shared with diesel high spec CX-5.

The new Mazda CX-5 2.5 Turbo has more updates on the inside compare to the outside. The dashboard design largely stays the same to the other variant of the CX-5. The biggest update you can find on the new CX-5 Turbo is the new instrument cluster that comes with a 7” screen with analogue tachometer. It’s the same instrument cluster as the latest Mazda 3. On top of that, there is a heads up display that shows necessary information to drivers without having them to take their eyes off the road while driving.

Another update for the interior of the new CX-5 Turbo is the infotainment system. On the surface, the infotainment looks pretty similar to the normal CX-5, but Mazda updated the Mazda Connect system with some software update. For starters, you get 360 camera to help to maneuver the car in tight spaces. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay have been pre-loaded into the infotainment system to make the CX-5 more appealing, but the Android Auto on the infotainment system touch function is disabled which is a little inconvenient for Android Auto users.

The seats inside the CX-5 Turbo are fully leather wrap. The front seats provided plenty of support to keep the driver and front passenger comfortable during long distance journey. The front passenger seats have been updated with electrical seat adjuster. The rear seats is similar to the other Mazda CX-5 variant, which have decent legroom and headroom. We manage to fit 3 adult at the back and still fairly comfortable. The seat back can be folded down into 60:40 split to increase the 444L boot space for the CX-5.

Mazda CX-5 comes with a very long list of safety system. As for standard safety equipment, there are system like 6 airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Dynamic Stability Control (DSC), Emergency Braking Assist (EBA), Traction Control System (TCS), Emergency Stop Signal (ESS), and Hill Launch Assist (HLA). Apart from that, the CX-5 Turbo also come with a whole host of advance safety system like GVC Plus, Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM), Rear Cross Traffic Assistant (RCTA), Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), Lane-Keep Assist System (LAS), Driver Attention Alert (DAA), and Smart City Brake Support (SCBS). Would appreciate if Mazda Malaysia will add in Adaptive Cruise Control to complete the whole host of safety system.

Biggest update with CX-5 turbo can be felt when you get behind the wheel of the SUV. The CX-5 turbo is powered by the same 2.5L turbocharged engine found in the new CX-9. The engine produces about 228bhp at 5,000rpm and 420Nm of torque from 2,000rpm onwards. The engine is mated to a trusty 6 speed automatic transmission.

The 6 speed transmission is a smooth transmission during gear change to help this turbocharged engine to run smoothly. Being a large capacity turbocharged engine, the turbo lag is being kept to a minimum, which means the power delivery feels quite natural and available across a wide rev range. In terms of fuel consumption, we’re struggling to get the fuel consumption below the 11L/100km mark. We also detected slight vibration coming from the footwell during hard acceleration, maybe Mazda could look into it.

To absorb bumps from the road, the CX-5 turbo uses McPherson struts upfront and Multilink rear suspension. The suspension absorb bumps with ease, but being the most powerful CX-5 among the range, this also means you have higher probability to experience body roll because you can arrive into the corner in higher speed. Even though there are body roll, the all-wheel drive system constantly shuffle the torque around and working in tandem with the GVC Plus system to help the CX-5 turbo to reduce any understeer or oversteer during fast cornering.

To steer the CX-5 Turbo, the common electrical power steering system is taking up the task. The steering system gives the driver plenty of confident in chucking the CX-5 around the corners, as the steering is rather direct. To slow the SUV down, there are the 4 wheel disc brakes to take the pressure. When driving fast, the braking performance will start to suffer a little as it felt like there are not enough braking performance to slow the car down fast enough, also means the driver have to recalibrate the breaking point to slow the car down enough to take corners safely.

Come back to the question, do you really need a turbocharge petrol engine in the CX-5? If you want a really powerful SUV and fuel consumption is none of your concern, it would be fine to own it. But if you still want power, and fuel consumption is still part of your consideration, the 2.2L diesel CX-5 will do just fine.

Priced at RM 181,770.41, you do get 5 years or 100,000km warranty coverage and free servicing inclusive of parts, labour, and lubricant. The Mazda CX-5 turbo can be gotten with Soul Red Crystal, Meteor Grey, Snowflake White Pearl, Sonic Silver, Machine Grey, and Deep Crystal Blue.