Our cars: Mazda CX-5 - January
Week ending January 25
Driven this week: 420 miles
Mazda CX-5 review
Recent group test action has meant I've covered a few hundred miles in the 173bhp Mazda CX-5 2.2D 175 Sport Nav – the range-topping model and the more powerful, four-wheel-drive equivalent of our front-wheel-drive, 148bhp CX-5 2.2D 150 Sport Nav long-term car.
If anything it highlighted how complete the Mazda is in its lower-powered form. The 175 is great; just as enthusiastic and free-revving as you'd expect a tuned version of this outstanding 2.2-litre turbodiesel to be. Yet in real-world use I felt like I was losing out on very little by swapping to our long-term car, which costs around £2k less (going by the list price) and is returning more than 47mpg next to the 40mpg that I saw out of around 400 miles of varied driving in the 175.
After all, the 150 is still usefully quick, a pleasure to drive and is standing up brilliantly to normal everyday abuse. It even waded through this week’s snow and ice with casual ease.
So our 150 Sport Nav wins on just about every count. The only oddity is the ride quality, which is a touch less fidgety on the higher-powered car. The wheel and tyre differences - Toyo rubber on 19-inch wheels for the 175, and Bridgestone on 17-inch for our 150 - can be the only reason for it.
Week ending January 18
Driven this week: 200 miles
The other week I was complaining about how I couldn't figure out how to cancel the navigation and was too lazy to look up a solution in the manual.
Thanks to all of you who got in touch with the simple answer.
On the steering wheel there's the voice activation button. If I press that then say 'clear route', hey presto the route is cancelled.
I just need to test how the voice command function works the next time the family are on board, Incy-Wincy Spider is playing on the iPod and my children are fighting in the back.
By Iain Reid
Week ending January 4
Driven this week: 110 miles
Hurray! Cracked door mirror is fixed. It took MKG 3000 Mazda in Twickenham just a few minutes to whip off the damaged door mirror covering and replace it with a new one.
There wasn't even time to grab a complimentary coffee. The damage? £40. You might think that expensive for a piece of moulded plastic, but at least now I've got matching mirrors again.
By Iain Reid