One of the coolest perks of this job is that we get to test out new vehicles and drive them around they're our own. A few weeks ago we were able to try the 2017 Mazda CX-9 Grand Touring AWD.
As a busy mom of two little ones, I try to share things about the vehicles we drive that a mom would want and need to know.
Comfort and Drive
The 2017 Mazda CX-9 Grand Touring AWD drives like a dream. With a larger vehicle like this one, I usually assume I'm going to lose some of that smooth driving ability, but that's not true here. We took it out to the lighthouse down a narrow super curvy road that has no room to run off because it drops off to the water and I was able to whip around the curves with ease.
I really love the captain's chairs in the front seats. They're incredibly comfortable.
The back seat is pretty spacious and even has their own climate controls.
Like most SUVs with a third row, they're pretty cramped, but would be perfect for kids big enough that no longer need a car seat.
Not sure if this is more about style or comfort, but I'm a sucker for a sun roof! While it's not a large one, it's there! I love being able to feel fresh air and I think they really help brighten up a car and make it feel roomier.
When I first hopped in the car, it felt like I was sitting in a luxury car. The driver's side has a cockpit feel to it. The leather wrapped steering wheel and the center console all contribute to this high class feel.
Let's talk about the exterior for a minute. Seriously, it's sleek. The front end is huge and definitely has a presence. Being able to drive a 7 passenger vehicle and still have a stylish ride is a win for mom!
I'm always a little blown away by the amount of cool tech in cars now. Remember how I was talking about that large center console that gives the 2017 Mazda CX-9 Grand Touring a cockpit feel? Here it is.
That big circle button gives you easy access to just about everything you need: audio, navigation, phone, and car information.
The tablet style touch screen display is practically on the dashboard, making it easier to see than some other models. It's much closer to eye level I think.
The Active Driving (Heads-Up Display) is one of my favorite features on the CX-9. I saw it for the first time in the Mazda CX-3, but it's a bit different in the CX-9. It's actually just kind of floating on the windshield instead of on a pop-up screen. It's super cool, really. It will display your speed, the speed limit, and even your navigation!
Something everyone thinks is important, is safety. Of course, I really started paying attention to it a bit more once I had the boys to drive around.
I was really impressed with the safety features in the Mazda CX-9. One of the coolest things I found was the lane keep assist! If the car notices you have veered out of your lane, it will gently pull it back between the lines. Seriously!
It also includes smart break support (perfect for city driving), distance recognition support, and a back-up camera with advanced blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert.
I always talk about how car seats fit in a vehicle we review. Charlie loves being able to sit in the 3rd row when he can, but with this one, I didn't let him. The 3rd row does have one top tether available to use with his forward facing convertible car seat. That said, he just turned 6 and does not buckle himself yet, so I would need to be able to do it. The way the seating is laid out, it was not super easy to reach him in the 3rd row to buckle him in.
We positioned both boys in the middle row in their forward facing convertible car seats. The middle seat may have been able to fit a thin adult with both car seats, but I wouldn't swear by it. We put down the center console in the backseat and it gave the kids some extra cup holders (Charlie's car seat does not have one, so that worked out well).
Overall, I really enjoyed the 2017 Mazda CX-9 and think it would work great for us once the boys are out of car seats. It handles great and doesn't shout “mom mobile”!