2018 Mazda CX-5 GT Review

2018 Mazda CX-5 GT Road Test, Review

2018 mazda cx-5 gt

Since the original Mazda CX-5 was launched some four or five years ago it has proved to be a sales success for Mazda with the public taking to its subtle style and feature packed value.

Fast forward to 2017 and the all new CX-5 was released and in 2018 we are close to more updates.

Sitting just below the range topping Akera the GT is one of the best selling variants in the range.


There is no doubting that the Mazda CX-5 has always been a stylish vehicle and the new model continues this trend. External features of the GT include:

  • LED headlamps
  • Power mirrors
  • Advanced keyless entry
  • Front parking sensors
  • 19-inch alloys
  • Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS)
  • Power operated tailgate
  • Sunroof

It does have a distinctive look that is definitely their own which separates them from the pack.

mazda cx-5 gt interiorInternal

Inside the CX-5 GT the first impression we had was the white leather seats contrasted with the black surrounds. It was quite stunning and inviting.

The front seats proved to be extremely comfortable with electronic adjustment for the driver and both heated. There is also dual zone climate controlled ait conditioning.

The dash had three round dials, centre is speedo, left one is tacho and the right is the MFD. The active driving display is great and doesn’t polarise out with sunglasses and shows your speed and navigation.

Starting is by advanced keyless push button.

The rear seats are sculptured for two people but will take three at a pinch and have a recline function. The centre armrest and storage is handy.

It’s fair to say that the rear seats are amongst the most comfortable in the segment and the doors open wide for easy entry and exit. The rear wheel arch does restrict this slightly though.

There are air vents back there as well as USB ports. They will fold almost flat in a 60/40 configuration to increase the already adequate boot space. This ranges from 442 – 1342L of volumetric space.

The electric tailgate is a bonus and there’s a high-quality sliding cargo cover fitted, a rear 12V outlet and handy shopping hooks.


On top of the centre stack protrudes the 7 inch colour screen. This houses the infotainment system with the Bose 249w amplifier and 10 speakers. Awesome sound.

It also houses the sat-nav, digital radio and Bluetooth as well as other features. It is controlled by either touch screen method or the multi-function dial controller on the centre console.

Drive and Engine

The 2018 Mazda CX-5 GT we tested came with a 2.2 litre SKYACTIV-D diesel, mated with a 6-speed SKYACTIV-Drive automatic transmission, and the impressive i-ACTIV AWD all-wheel drive system.

The engine produces 136kW/400Nm. These allow for a very relaxed and economical driving style. The diesel sips fuel at a combined ADR rate of just 6.8L/100K.

Also note that driving the Mazda CX5 GT is fun. It has a feeling about it that is engaging. Not in a sports car way, but as mentioned for an AWD SUV it feels more car of hatch like than many of the competitors. That comes from Mazda’s KODO philosophy.

Off road driving is limited also with a low hanging front spoiler and a ground clearance of 185mm. It will happily traverse forest trails, sandy entrances and of course loves going for weekends away to the snow.

However towing at 1800kg and a tow ball weight of 150kg means that it is more than useful for the jet skis or small boat or lightweight camper etc. It does promote an active lifestyle.


With a 5 star ANCAP safety rating, the Next-Gen CX-5 also offers an array of refined i-ACTIVESENSE safety technologies.

The 2018 Mazda CX-5 GT features:

Front, side and curtain airbags, Dynamic Stability Control, Emergency Brake Assist, Emergency Stop Signal, Hill Launch Assist, Blind Spot Monitoring, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Smart City Brake Support [Forward/Reverse].

There’s also Traffic Sign Recognition, front and rear parking sensors and a reverse camera as standard.

Good Bits:

  • Slick styling – Urban Chic
  • Road handling and agility
  • Flexible cargo space

Not So Good Bits:

  • Premium pricing for diesel
  • Tiptronic reversed
  • No Apple Car Play or Android

2018 mazda cx-5 side rear profileSummary

Mazda hit a home run with its first CX-5 becoming the bestselling SUV in the class and the new model only improves the vehicle.

It is fun to drive in a spirited way, has a sumptuous interior, average interior space and practicality, and stylish looks. It gets a thumbs up from me!

Facts and Figures: 2018 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD SUV

  • Engine:  2.2 litre turbo-diesel producing 136kW/400Nm
  • Transmission: Six-speed automatic
  • Safety: Five-stars
  • Origin: Japan
  • Warranty: Three years
  • Price: from $51,912
2018 Mazda CX-5 GT
  • Overall Rating


  1. A glowing review backed up by the acceptance by the sales of the CX-5.
    Have just about convinced me this is the one to buy. Just one thing I have noticed in the review listing a 136kW power pack of the 2.2L turbo diesel.
    Current Mazda web site and their glossy brochure show a power pack of 140kW.
    Who is right??

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