2021 Honda CR-V or Mazda CX-5: Which Compact SUV Is Right for You?

Because the best-selling vehicles from their respective manufacturers, the Honda CR-V and Mazda CX-5 imply enterprise. They every made their debut of their present varieties for the 2017 mannequin yr, taking over the fiercely aggressive compact SUV segment. Each are fairly good—the CR-V gained our 2018 SUV of the Year award, and the 2 sit atop our rankings for the compact SUV segment—however for fully completely different causes. How does the 2021 Honda CR-V greatest the 2021 Mazda CX-5, and vice versa? Learn on to search out out.

2021 Honda CR-V: Benefits Over the CX-5

Gas Economic system

Drivers eager to avoid wasting on gasoline ought to select the CR-V over the CX-5. With its customary 1.5-liter turbo-four engine, the CR-V is EPA-rated at 28/34 mpg metropolis/freeway with FWD and 27/32 mpg with AWD. Regardless of its 2.5-liter I-Four being a full liter bigger, the CX-5 isn’t too far behind, scoring 25/31 mpg with FWD and 24/30 mpg with AWD in EPA testing. Nevertheless, the CX-5’s elective turbocharged engine makes it a comparative muscle car, including energy whereas rising its thirst for gasoline. Turbocharged CX-5s get 23/28 mpg with FWD and 22/27 mpg with AWD.

The CR-V has one other effectivity ace up its sleeve: a hybrid powertrain. Even with customary AWD, the CR-V Hybrid is EPA-rated at 40/35 mpg. The CX-5 has no method to counter that, particularly as a result of its environment friendly diesel engine is officially gone.

Cargo House

Honda has found out how you can make the CR-V bigger on the inside than it appears outdoors. Cargo capability measures 39.2 cubic ft behind the second-row seats and 75.eight cubic ft when these seats are folded. There’s barely much less cargo area within the CR-V Hybrid due to its battery; it has 33.2 and 68.7 cubic ft behind the second and first rows, respectively. In both case, it’s a great quantity greater than the CX-5, which has 30.9 cubes behind its second row and 59.6 with these seats folded down.

Good Packaging

Capability is one factor, however how that area is used can matter extra. The CR-V’s packaging is thoughtful and effective, placing buttons and controls inside simple attain. Bins within the door panels and middle console provide loads of area for every day carry gadgets or a purse. Its doorways open very vast, simplifying ingress and egress and making it simple to load a child’s automotive seat into the second row. Plus, the CR-V provides somewhat extra headroom and legroom in each rows than the CX-5. Other smart touches just like the capless gasoline filler and easy-fold rear seats come in useful. All these user-friendly particulars make life just a bit simpler.

2021 Mazda CX-5: Benefits Over the CR-V


With its daring and distinctive design, the CR-V doesn’t look all that unhealthy. However at this value level there’s no SUV more gorgeous than the CX-5. Mazda’s design crew appeared to take a less-is-more method, giving the CX-5’s sheetmetal refined sculpting and curvatures that seize gentle splendidly. The few laborious edges present sporty and purposeful definition. That theme continues inside; the cabin is easier visually than some rivals but earns comparisons to SUVs in a class above. For individuals who wish to see and be seen, the CX-5 will do the trick.

Enjoyable Issue

Maybe it’s no shock that the CX-5 drives awesomely—it comes from the corporate that builds the Miata, in spite of everything. Its correct steering and secure trip high quality are components of its nice dealing with. When geared up with the accessible turbocharged engine, it’s fairly fast, and the paddle shifters add a layer of involvement to the drive. Stickier tires might assist it brake and grip extra successfully, however even with all-season rubber, the CX-5 performs properly. Certain, the CR-V drives nicely, however it doesn’t have the sting that makes the CX-5 downright fun.

Base Value

That the CX-5’s nice appears and driving expertise come at a decrease beginning value than the CR-V provides to its enchantment. The least costly 2021 Mazda CX-5, the Sport FWD trim, prices $26,370. The entry-level CR-V equal, the LX FWD mannequin, is a bit more costly at $26,525. Moreover, AWD is barely cheaper on the CX-5 than the CR-V; Mazda fees $1,400 whereas Honda wants $1,500. Nevertheless, on the excessive finish, the CX-5 prices extra, with the luxury-intending Signature AWD trim commanding at the very least $38,505. On the range-topping pure gasoline mannequin, the Touring AWD trim, the CR-V is cheaper, with costs beginning at $36,325. Even the CR-V Hybrid Touring begins at $37,525.

The Verdict

The CR-V and CX-5 are each worthy of acclaim, however they earn it in numerous methods. The Honda hits bull’s-eyes in pragmatic areas, offering the cargo area, inside packaging, and gasoline economic system that make it a well-rounded on a regular basis SUV. However the Mazda tugs at heartstrings, buying and selling somewhat little bit of practicality for lots extra type and driving enjoyment. Nevertheless you measure them, these are two of the best compact SUVs on sale in 2021.

2021 Honda CR-V Benefits Over the CX-5

  • Gas economic system
  • Cargo capability
  • Good packaging

2021 Mazda CX-5 Benefits Over the CR-V

  • Styling
  • Enjoyable issue
  • Base value

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