Nissan X-Trail ST-L petrol 7-seater 2016 review
Richard Berry road tests and reviews the Nissan X-Trail ST-L 2WD petrol seven-seater, with specs fuel consumption and verdict.
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You don't have time to read long introductions about an SUV, you're too busy for that. I know so, because this is a Mazda CX-5 review, not one about a Range Rover.
Yes, it'd be great to have lingering, long lunches and nowhere really to be, but there's work to be picked up, kids to be, places to be done, or something like that… as you know it's all a busy blur.
So let's get straight to it, before you have to address the next 'to-do' on the list.
The Maxx Sport joined our family for a week of day-care drop offs, work commutes, grocery shopping and a trip to the grandparents hundreds of kays away. So, is this the perfect value for money grade or should you step up or down a level? How does it compare with rivals such as the Toyota RAV4, Nissan X-Trail and Volkswagen Tiguan? And is there anything Maxx or Sport about it at all?
|Mazda CX-5 2017: Maxx Sport (4x4)|
|Fuel Type||Regular Unleaded Petrol|
This new generation CX-5 arrived in March 2017. It's a much improved and different SUV to the one before it with sharper looks, a more prominent grille, sleeker head and tail-lights and a well-crafted, high end feeling cabin. Only the Tiguan is more polished in terms of refinement, but you'll have to live with its good but serious looks.
How do you tell the difference between a Maxx Sport and a Maxx? The Maxx Sport has LED fog-lights while the Maxx doesn't have fog-lights at all. And that's it. Actually, all CX-5s are tricky to tell apart, but if it has a sunroof and daytime running lights it means you're looking at a top-of-the-range Akera.
Not sure if you need something bigger or smaller? Well, the CX-5 is 4550mm long, which is 275mm longer than a CX-3, but 525mm shorter than the full-size CX-9. A RAV4 is 55mm shorter than a CX-5. You should also know the CX-5 is 1840mm wide, and 1675mm tall. So, will it fit in your car space?
Rear legroom is excellent – I'm 191cm and can sit behind my driving position with about 30mm of space to spare, and the same in headroom, too.
Cabin storage is excellent, with the Maxx Sport grade coming standard with a fold-down centre armrest which houses two cupholders, a storage box and two USB ports.
Up front there's a deep centre console storage bin and two cupholders. You'll also find bottle holders in all doors.
The seating height and wide-opening rear doors made wrestling my toddler into his car seat a bit easier on my back, too.
I also like the plastic sills fitted to the doors to protect them from footpath scrapes when opened. It was also good to see air vents in the second row. All CX-5s come with darker tinting on the rear windows.
The Maxx Sport has all the Maxx's standard features, including LED headlights, a 7.0-inch touchscreen with reversing camera, DAB+ digital radio, a seven-speaker sound system, push button start and rear parking sensors.
By stepping up into the Maxx Sport you'll get LED fog lights, auto headlights and wipers, dual-zone climate control, a rear centre armrest with storage and USB inputs, sat nav and air vents in the second row.
That's great value. But how does it compare to key rivals? Well the RAV4 GXL 4x4 is pricier at $38,450 and boasts a similar level of features. The Nissan X-Trail ST-L 4x4 is $39,490 and also gets much the same gear, while the Volkswagen Tiguan 132TSI Comfortline is more at $41,490 but comes with more too, including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
You can get the AWD CX-5 with a petrol or a diesel engine. Ours had the petrol, which is a 140kW/251Nm 2.5-litre four-cylinder. The diesel is more expensive but comes with more torque, and that would make it better for towing, if that's what you're planning to do.
The 2.5-litre AWD is the thirstiest CX-5 in the range, but still impressively fuel efficient. The official fuel consumption figure for the combined (urban/extra urban) cycle is 7.5L/100km, and after 300-odd kilometres of highways and city commutes our trip computer was recording an average of 8.3L/100km. That's outstanding. The stop-start system would have helped, too, although I didn't have it switched on for the entire time.
Don't expect the words Maxx and Sport to have anything to do with this grade's on-road performance, it could have easily have been called the CX-5 Wow Cucumber or any other combination of two unrelated words.
Being a Max Sport doesn't mean it comes with a bigger engine, or go faster, or handle any better than any of the other CX-5s – it's just the grade, and means it comes with more standard features than the Maxx.
That's not to say our Maxx Sport didn't perform well – it did. Ours had the 2.5-litre engine with AWD and had good handling, while being super easy to pilot. The ride was comfortable, but a bit on the firm side though and you'll feel a bit of hardness on patchy roads.
So, AWD, is it worth the extra money? Well, I have a hill on my test loop that's so steep it'll cause FWD SUVs to lose traction when accelerating away from a stand still. The Maxx Sport AWD didn't slip at all. So not only is all-wheel drive good for keeping you under control on dirt and gravel, but also on tarmac.
The only real let down was an engine which felt like it needed to work hard when there was a bit of weight in the car - 251Nm isn't a huge amount of torque.
Talking of torque, the braked towing capacity for all CX-5s is 1800kg, but the diesel with 420Nm will pull that load more easily.
3 years / unlimited km warranty
ANCAP Safety Rating
Mazda is leading the way in installing advanced safety equipment in even the lower grades of its cars and that's the case with the CX-5, too. The Maxx Sport comes with AEB which works forward and backwards plus the system can tell the difference between cars and people. There's also blind spot and rear cross traffic warning.
The CX-5 scored the maximum five-star ANCAP rating.
You'll find two ISOFIX mounts and three top tether anchor points across the back seat, too.
Good looks, great to drive, super safe, spacious, efficient and great value. The Maxx Sport AWD petrol will tick all those boxes for you. This is an outstanding mid-sized SUV.
|Akera (4x4)||2.2L, Diesel, 6 SP AUTO||$32,970 – 43,950||2017 MAZDA CX-5 2017 Akera (4x4) Pricing and Specs|
|GT (4x4)||2.5L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO||$31,700 – 41,990||2017 MAZDA CX-5 2017 GT (4x4) Pricing and Specs|
|Maxx (4x2)||2.0L, ULP, 6 SP MAN||$24,990 – 25,341||2017 MAZDA CX-5 2017 Maxx (4x2) Pricing and Specs|
|Maxx (4x4)||2.5L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO||$22,250 – 28,990||2017 MAZDA CX-5 2017 Maxx (4x4) Pricing and Specs|
|Price and features||9|
|Engine & trans||7|