Thanks to Mazda for loaning the 2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD for our trip to the midwest. All opinions are 100% our own.

On our recent visit to Chicago to visit family and explore a few college campuses, we packed our kids in the very sporty and roomy 2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD. Coming from a 2010 large SUV, there were so many safety features that had some getting used to but very glad they existed. Older cars were built to withstand accidents and it seems newer cars are made to prevent accidents.

Exploring the Midwest in Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD

While my car is much larger, if you don’t have the radio on all you can hear is the engine. Not the same in our Mazda crossover. The ride was smooth and quiet which was a change for me.

Merging on and off Illinois highways can be challenging, thanks to the sports mode on the 2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring WD I was able to easily transition into this mode while accelerating.

Safety features of 2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD

Some of the safety features of the  CX-5 are Adaptive cruise control, a Blind-spot monitor, and lane-keeping assist. These are all standard on the Grand Touring trim and takes getting used to. You are warned on both the side mirrors as well as the heads up display.

Exploring the Midwest in Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD

A backup camera is standard on all trims.

A  Forward-collision warning and a version of automated emergency braking that Mazda calls Smart City Brake Support is standard across all trims, but it only works at low speeds

Lane Departure Warning– The steering wheel shakes slightly and the lane line in the display turns yellow.

Other features of our  2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD

  • 187-hp, SKYACTIV®-G2 2.5L DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine with Cylinder Deactivation
  • Power sliding glass moonroof with one-touch-open feature and interior sunshade
  • Heated side mirrors
  • LED Daytime Running Lights
  • LED fog lights
  • LED Combination taillights
  • Power Rear Liftgate with programmable height adjustment
  • Leather-trimmed seats
  • 8-way power driver’s seat with power lumbar support and 2-position memory
  • 6-way power passenger seat
  • Bose® 10-speaker audio sound system with Centerpoint® 2 and AudioPilot® 2
  • Mazda Navigation System

This All Wheel Drive vehicle is the perfect size for a small family or a new driver. We easily fit three teens and two adults in the car for road trips over 2 hours and no one complained. There was plenty of cargo space for all four pieces of luggage and backpacks.

Exploring the Midwest in Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD

It may also have been the multiple USB ports on the vehicle that kept them happy. The interior was leather and very comfortable even in the middle of summer. (Notice our interior was black too)

I have never owned a Mazda before and after driving 500 miles around a busy city and through farmland,  I would truly consider this for my next car.


Be sure to pin this for when you are looking for a great crossover SUV.