Every time a new car is delivered to test drive, I am nervous about getting in and test driving. I compare this feeling to those that perform on stage and get stage fright each time before a performance. My giddiness kicked in the moment I sat down behind the steering wheel because it was like being the captain in the cockpit of a plane.
The 2016 Mazda CX-9 is an SUV crafted for drivers who want to get in and have everything sitting at their fingertips, just like a pilot in a plane. At first glance, I truly thought a Lexus had been dropped off because the outside ‘snazziness’ (yep that is a word) has the impressive look for a whole lot less in the sticker price!
Getting behind the wheel of the 2016 Mazda CX-9 is just the beginning of a truly premium driving experience. Let’s get behind the wheel and lavishly live the overview of my time with the 2016 Mazda CX-9, truly a premium driving experience.
When I decide to accept a test drive, I do so without any preconceived notions. I elect to do the test drives to share overviews with all of you. Cars are something we all want to learn about and be less intimidated when we head on out to see them in person. While the cars are provided, all thoughts, images, and experiences are my own because I want to share what I have learned to help you make a better decision when purchasing a vehicle.
Meet The 2016 MAZDA CX – 9
Go ahead look at this stunning ride, I know you have seen it many times before on the road, but you never really looked. Glare, stare, glance and learn why this SUV is really gaining popularity. No matter what angle you catch a glimpse of this vehicle from you are sure to be impressed. From the 20″ alloy wheels to the roof mounted shark fin antenna and the elegant looking LED fog and day running lites, there is always something that will catch your eye.
Did you know that this is Mazda’s largest offering in the SUV Category? It is a 7 passenger vehicle. Truth be told (you all know I say it like it is) the 3rd row is best suited for smaller kids not the older teens with long legs, but for shorter distances it is all good. The kids loved the 2nd row window sunshades, because even though the sun is in scarce supply in the good ol ‘Burg’ it’s nice to have when it is blaring on in!
Perhaps it’s because the Mazda CX-9 provides both 2nd and 3rd-row seating and yet cargo space, with or without the third row turned down? The seats easily collapse, first the headrest then the seat, and you have a lot of room. We easily fit 2 ice hockey bags and sticks back here and there is auto-tailgate lift making it very easy for the kids to handle their own in and out of the trunk area.
The Front Seat & Driver’s Area
It might be this pretentious, drool-worthy driver’s seat that is definitely flirting in comparison with the cockpit of an airplane. There is nothing your hands will crave that is not within immediate reach. I am not kidding when I say that the car is tripped out with a ton of features, easily accessed and operated and totally can compare with the inside of a Lexus!
Let me start off by saying the inside offers a QUIET ride. The vehicle was created with sound-deadening materials and soundproof glass so you get to thump the BOSE stereo and enjoy it at any volume.
The shifter is by far the most elegant looking I have driven to date, and so sporty (bottom left). You are the Queen of it (or the King) when you are the driver. Again on the bottom left photo you are seeing how I controlled navigation, and anything on screen because right at the base of the shifter are the controls for the stereo and GPS, as well as your tech equipment you choose to sync.
The far right, bottom corner image shows you the options I had in the car, these are to the left of the steering wheel. The options included Blind Spot Monitoring, Trunk Lift, Parking Assist, Lane Departure Warning. Everything right there and take a look at the steering wheel. From the steering wheel, I could control the readout Panel in front of me, as well as the stereo, calls, etc. Very easy, very precise and never taking my hands off the wheel.
The Feature That Got Me
Every car I drive gives me some new features that just makes my day and the winner for the 2016 Mazda CX-9 was the Active Driving Display. The passengers in the backseat could see this, but if you were the front seat passenger sorry for you, no way to see it, lol! Believe me, I goose necked to try when my husband test drove the car but had no luck. I circled it in yellow up there for you to see, at that point I was 0 mph while I could have been going 35 mph.
This is a secret, meant for your eyes only, a display that appears right on the front glass of the window. When you are driving you look right between it but you can not help but see what ‘mistakes’ you are making, from lane departure (shhh, that never happened, ha!) to going just a tad too fast, and the speed showing what your speed is and what the limit actually is. With the lane departure, the car would vibrate to let you know that you were not in your lane.
The Elegance of Style
I want to speak to the elegance of the SUV, because it just shows so nice, and I captured you a day and night shot. The reflectivity of that paint shines awesome in the light! The color on this vehicle was Machine Gray with an Auburn interior, just in case you were wondering. The sticker price on the vehicle I drove was $45,215 and included a lot of what I shared with you and even more from a Moonroof to AWD.
The lights also offered auto high beam which again, we all know I am such a proponent of, and of course front heated seats and 2 settings for the driver’s seat, all huge pluses in a vehicle. The 2nd-row seating did not have heated seats and I did forget to photo and share the cargo in the back, there is a lift panel to ‘hide’ purchases in. Come on we all do that!
Dynamic Pressure Turbo Engine
Lastly, I would be remiss if I did not talk about the acceleration, the pick-up-and-go that this vehicle offered. Can I say, Holy Speed Batman! I had to control myself because the car just drives effortlessly, quietly and while you might start out at 25 MPH you won’t be there for long (unless you are paying attention to the active driving display. Hello, responsiveness to the call for gas, this car should be in the game Need For Speed, cause baby it charges ahead!
I won’t get all techie because that’s not how to make sense of this, but it is called ” SKYACTIV®1-G 2.5-liter turbocharged engine”. This eliminates the lag between the time you press your foot on the gas to the time it starts, instead call for the gas and GO! It’s s-p-e-c-t-a-c-u-l-a-r and while I NEVER encourage aggressive driving I want to give you this tidbit of information. Imagine yourself driving distances both long and short where you just need to get IN FRONT of the person that is the lead car because they can’t seem to get their ‘grandpa feet’ on the gas! This is perfect for those backroads with white dashed passing lanes because responsiveness is key and you will move fast.
Or imagine long spans on highway driving where you are lane-changing and suddenly would prefer to LEAD the lane rather than ride behind, well hit it, and go! That’s what I am going to say, and you can figure that I tried this all out (wink wink). Lavishly live driving out loud with a luxury out loud in the 2016 Mazda CX-9: Truly A Premium Driving Experience!