Though we’ve already talked about some of the features on the 2023 Mazda CX-50 and what it means for the current CX-5, this is the first time we’ve seen the full pricing and packages for this all-new crossover, which starts at $28,025 with destination fees.
The other major talking point here: The CX-50 is the first vehicle to be built at the Mazda Toyota Manufacturing (MTM) plant in Huntsville, Alabama. That makes the CX-50 the first Mazda to be built in the United States.
In a nutshell, the CX-50 is a midsize SUV that puts more emphasis on adventure. In our minds, this makes us think of the Subaru Forester Wilderness — you know, one of those vehicles that can handle some mild off-roading but is still comfortable as a daily driver. The exterior design features clearly indicate a little more ruggedness with extra cladding and anti-glare decal on the hood.
“This new Mazda vehicle has been developed for North America, particularly to support the active and outdoor lifestyles of customers in this region,” Jeff Guyton, president and CEO of Mazda North American Operations said. “The CX-50 encourages people to immerse themselves in nature without compromising on the premium design and outstanding on-road performance Mazda is known for.”
The end result: Though the CX-50 and CX-5 are similarly sized, they look significantly different and target different buyers.
If you’re a consumer that likes choices then you’ll be interested in the trims (or “packages” as Mazda wants to call them) available for the CX-50 as there are 10 different options, plus two engine variants. This could make for a confusing buying experience.
The two engines are: a Skyactiv-G 2.5-liter naturally aspirated 4-cylinder engine producing 187 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque, or a Skyactiv-G 2.5-liter Turbocharged four-cylinder engine producing 256 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission is the only transmission available, and all-wheel drive is standard for all packages.
Mazda installs its Intelligent Drive Select (or Mi-Drive) system into the CX-50 and with it comes three different driving modes: Sport, Off-Road and Towing. In Towing mode, the CX-50 can tow up to 3,5000 pounds (in select packages).
The 10 trims available are: 2.5 S, 2.5 S Select, 2.5 S Preferred, 2.5 S Preferred Plus, S Premium, S Premium Plus, Turbo, Turbo Premium and Turbo Premium Plus. The packages and prices (including a $1,225 destination fee) break down accordingly:
The Meridian, which is a new trim name for the Mazda brand, will fall in at No. 10 and will launch later this year. Mazda says it will have 18-inch alloy wheels with all-terrain tires, side rocker garnish and headlight garnish, distinctive hood graphics, and a host of outdoor-specific accessories to allow customers to take CX-50 confidently and conveniently where it belongs – in nature. Pricing and more details will be announced closer to on-sale date, but we have to guess it will be in the mid $45k range.
We will have more next month on the CX-50 after the official media launch. You can bet we will ask for Mazda’s clear vision on how this fits into its product lineup and whether the new SUV will compete with its top-selling nameplate – the CX-5. We understand the 2023 Mazda CX-50 a little better now, and think the pricing looks competitive. But if we’re confused about the pecking order, the consumer will be, too.
What do you think about the CX-50? Would you consider it over something more rugged like a Jeep or Subaru? Leave us your comments below.
Leave a Comment