What's New for 2014:
- Redesigned alloy wheels
- Optional rear cross-traffic alert system
The 2014 Mazda CX-9 is classified as a small sport utility vehicle by the EPA, though it offers seating for 7 passengers and up to 100.7 cu.-ft. of cargo space. Front-wheel-drive (FWD) and all-wheel-drive (AWD) versions are available, as are Sport, Touring, and Grand Touring trim levels. Competitors include the Chevrolet Traverse, Dodge Journey, Ford Explorer, GMC Acadia, Honda Pilot, Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento, Nissan Pathfinder, Subaru Tribeca, and the Toyota Highlander.
Models and Features
Offered as the lineup's base model, the 2014 Mazda CX-9 Sport arrives on dealer lots equipped with 18-in. alloy wheels, rear spoiler, tri-zone climate control, Bluetooth connectivity, 6-speaker sound system with a USB port and HD Radio, tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with integrated audio controls, and leather interior accents.
Representing the middle of the CX-9 spread is the Touring version. It features heated power outside mirrors, automatic headlights, leather upholstery, and heated power front seats. The list of goodies also includes some noteworthy safety features, such as a blind-spot monitoring system, rear cross-traffic alert, rear park-assist sensors, and a rearview camera.
On top of that, the 2014 CX-9 Grand Touring adds memory settings, reverse tilt-down mirrors, fog lights, HID headlights, LED daytime running lights, power liftgate, and rain-sensing wipers. Supporting the more-is-better theme are 20-in. alloy wheels, push-button start, and premium interior trim.
Options and Packages
Buyers who want their new CX-9 dolled up a few degrees beyond standard have their choice of a few select options, such as a Touring Technology package that consists of a 10-speaker premium sound system, push-button start, navigation, power tilt/slide moonroof, and the power liftgate. A similar Technology package is available for the Grand Touring version, as is a rear-seat entertainment system with satellite radio.
Under the Hood
Mazda makes things simple in terms of the 2014 CX-9's powertrain, as there is only one engine and transmission combination available. At the heart of this crossover is a 3.7-liter V-6 engine that produces 273 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque, all of which is directed to the front or all four wheels courtesy of a 6-speed automatic transmission with a sport mode. The company claims that, when properly equipped, the CX-9 can tow loads weighing up to 3,500 lbs.
According to the EPA, FWD examples of the 2014 Mazda CX-9 should average 17 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway. Opt for AWD and expect those figures to drop to 16 and 22 mpg, respectively.
Safety Ratings and Technology
In crash tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 2014 Mazda CX-9 received an overall rating of 4 (out of 5) stars. In tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the 2014 CX-9 received a \"Poor\" rating--the Institute's lowest--for small overlap front-impact protection. All CX-9s offer 6 air bags, 4-wheel anti-lock ventilated disc brakes, and electronic brake-force distribution.