Many people want the features of an SUV, but don't want to hurt their wallet at the pump and deal with the bad handling caused by the heavy weight. Mazda created the CX-7 for these people. Both trim levels can seat five people. The entry-level model, the CX-7 i, can tow 1,500 pounds, and the CX-7 s can tow 2,000 pounds.
The CX-7 is useful for families, people who want to transport dirt bikes, four-wheelers, or jet skis, people who need to carry camping equipment, and anyone who needs to carry small loads.
Initially, the CX-7 only came with a 2.3-liter turbocharged engine attached to a six-speed automatic transmission with the choice between front-wheel or an all-wheel drive transmission. It was praised for its responsive handling, sporty suspension, and quick torque response at low rpm. If you live in an area with snowy weather or drive on narrow mountain roads, you'll likely want to opt for the all-wheel drive transmission. Regardless of the transmission, the CX-7 is a fun car to drive as it's equipped with an engine that makes 244 hp at 5,000 rpm. It offers a comfortable mix between performance and comfort. It's more than capable of handling tight turns, prompt braking, and quick acceleration. At the same time, you can drive your kids to school or go to the store without issue.
If you're not a fan of turbocharged engines or just want better fuel economy, look at 2010 models and newer. Mazda added a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes significantly less horsepower than the previous engine, but makes up for it with better gas mileage and lower maintenance costs. In the 2012 CX-7, the 2.5-liter engine makes 161 hp and is capable of towing almost as much weight as the turbocharged version. Another benefit of the naturally-aspirated engine is that it only requires regular unleaded fuel, while the turbocharged engine needs premium unleaded gasoline.
Since its creation in 2007, the Mazda CX-7 earned consistent safety ratings according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). For every test, there are four possible ratings: good, acceptable, marginal, and poor. In the front moderate overlap test, which tests how a vehicle reacts to a direct head-on collision, each model year earned a "good" rating—the highest possible. For the side crash testing, which determines how secure rear passengers are in the event of a side collision, every model year received a "good" rating.
The CX-7 starts to lack in the roof strength test and head restraints and seats test. The roof strength test determines how much force the roof can withstand before it's crushed five inches. Every model year earned a "marginal" rating in this test.
Neck injuries due to whiplash are among the most common injuries sustained in an accident. Only the 2007 though 2011 models were put through the head restraints and seats test. This test measures how well these safety measures protect passengers from neck injuries during a rear impact crash. Every model year tested earned a "marginal" rating on this test.
NOTEWORTHY ABOUT THE MAZDA CX-7
- The crossover's fuel efficiency is impressive, showing an estimated 20/27 mpg in city and highway driving, respectively.
- You'll appreciate the stylish interior as soon as you enter the car. The matching armrests, center console, and instruments combined with the high-quality cloth seats work together to create a good ambiance.
- The CX-7 was introduced to take the place of the Mazda Tribute, a car that didn't quite fit in with Mazda's "Zoom-Zoom" brand mentality.