Consumers are truly spoilt for choice when it comes to SUVs these days. Small or big, no-frills or luxurious, ICE-powered or electric, conventional or of the silly ‘coupe-like' variety, there's an SUV out there for even the most exacting customers.
Compact crossover SUVs are the most popular as they’re right-sized, sitting at the heart of the global utility vehicle market. Japanese automakers take pride in being among the first to bet on this category of crossovers.
Now in their fifth generations, the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V are among the most popular models of their kind worldwide. These are the go-to SUVs for customers who want a Japanese compact crossover utility – or are they? Well, it depends on what the driver expects them to do.
Watch: New Cadillac XT4 Vs. Loaded Mazda CX-5 And Subaru Forester Makes For An Interesting Comparison
As this comparative review from Throttle House points out, the 2020 Mazda CX-5 proves to be a formidable opponent to the establishment. Blurring the lines between mainstream and premium, the CX-5 adds driver enjoyment into the equation, as well as a more upscale ambiance – provided that it is in the correct specification (as the test vehicle was in this video).
While not without faults, the Mazda’s biggest merit is that the driver feels involved and can have some fun behind the wheel. It’s not just a utility vehicle like the 2020 CR-V and 2020 RAV4, it actually deserves to be called a sports utility vehicle.
Sure, it may have a slightly smaller rear passenger compartment but reviewers Thomas and James didn’t seem to feel cramped in the back of the CX-5. The morale of the story is that if you must go the compact crossover SUV route, at least do it without totally compromising the driving experience. There’s more to this review, obviously, so head over to the video for the full picture.