2024 Mazda CX-8 evaluate | CarExpert


If you wish to purchase a brand new Mazda CX-8, you had higher be fast.

Regardless of releasing a facelifted model in March 2023, and telling CarExpert in July it deliberate to maintain it round, Mazda introduced in October it was pulling the plug on this stretched, three-row CX-5 by-product.

It might have some life left in it over in Japan, however remaining inventory will basically be gone in Australia by the second quarter of 2024.

Why is Mazda killing this comparatively common three-row crossover? Fairly merely, it’s clearing the decks for its new premium SUVs. The mid-sized, two-row CX-60 and massive, three-row CX-90 are already right here, and a stretched, three-row model of the previous – the CX-80 – has been locked in for an area launch.

With the CX-9 having ended manufacturing, Mazda is due to this fact giving its three-row fashions dearer, extra aspirational replacements.

WATCH: Paul’s video evaluate of the CX-8 G25 GT SP

The brand new Massive Structure-based SUVs are good, however they’re out of attain for lots of Australian new automobile patrons. It’s a disgrace, then, to see the CX-8 go.

Not solely is it dying, it’s taking its pleasant twin-turbo diesel four-cylinder engine with it. This engine has already been retired from the CX-5, making the CX-8 the final Australian-market Mazda to supply it.

How does the Mazda CX-8 fare vs its opponents?

View an in depth breakdown of the Mazda CX-8 towards equally sized autos.

Mazda CX-8 cutout image



How a lot does the Mazda CX-8 value?

The Mazda CX-8 is obtainable in 9 separate variants, with costs starting from $42,660 to $72,010 earlier than on-roads.

The D35 Touring Energetic examined right here sits someplace within the center, priced at $57,510 earlier than on-roads. It’s the second-most reasonably priced diesel CX-8, with the D35 Sport priced at $49,660 earlier than on-roads.

Jet Black Mica, Titanium Flash Mica, Platinum Quartz and Deep Blue Crystal Mica are the usual paint finishes; although, you may pay $795 further to get Rhodium White, Machine Gray or Soul Crimson Crystal metallic finishes or Polymetal Gray.

You may pay an additional $2000 over the Touring Energetic to step as much as the better-equipped GT SP, however you lose all-wheel drive and step right down to a much less interesting naturally aspirated petrol four-cylinder engine. Sadly, Mazda Australia by no means noticed match to supply the turbocharged 2.5-litre petrol engine within the CX-8.

The obvious rival for the CX-8 is the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, which can be a stretched, three-row model of an everyday mid-sized SUV.

It’s also possible to rely among the many CX-8’s rivals the Tiguan’s Skoda Kodiaq cousin, plus something from mid-sized SUVs with accessible third rows (Honda CR-V, Mitsubishi Outlander, Nissan X-Path) to autos within the section above (Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento).

Solely the Santa Fe and Sorento provide a diesel engine, with the Tiguan Allspace lately dropping its diesel possibility.

What’s the Mazda CX-8 like on the within?

The Touring Energetic’s distinctive inside mightn’t be probably the most fascinating alternative for households, for whom wipe-clean leatherette or leather-based is preferable, however damned if it isn’t distinctive.

Leatherette is used on the seat bolsters, but it surely’s completed in a pale stone color. Between the bolsters there’s a beautiful textured fabric, once more in a pale color, and the general look is nearly retro – and in an totally pleasant manner.

The heated entrance seats are snug and supportive, too.

The stone leatherette could be discovered on the doorways, contrasted with black trim with pale stitching components. The dashboard, too, is black with pale stitching.

For extra distinction, there’s gloss black trim on the doorways and centre console, plus metal-look trim on the dashboard.

All of it comes collectively properly; although, we might do with out the scratch- and smudge-prone gloss black trim.

The switchgear is tactile, too, significantly the beautiful knurled dials for the local weather management, which have a satisfying operation.

Materials high quality, as anticipated of a Mazda, is superb. There’s leatherette trim on the perimeters of the centre console, once more with distinction stitching, whereas the highest of the dashboard and the higher half of the door trims are all completed in soft-touch trim.

In case you are involved about stains, stepping right down to the Touring will get you black leather-based upholstery, which can be discovered one rung up within the GT SP.

Mazda has been very erratic with its stance on touchscreens.

The older techniques present in fashions just like the Mazda 2 have contact performance when stationary, the most recent techniques discovered within the CX-60 and CX-90 have all-speed performance however just for smartphone mirroring, and the CX-8 misses out on any kind of contact performance.

Mazda’s slick infotainment interfaces and rotary dial imply that’s not an excessive amount of of a hassle, except you’re utilizing Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

Then, these significantly touch-optimised mirroring techniques turn into a trouble to make use of with out with the ability to contact the display screen.

No matter whether or not you’re utilizing Google Maps or the manufacturing unit navigation, turn-by-turn directions will seem within the head-up show.

The show additionally has useful blind-spot indicators as nicely. Kudos to Mazda for creating not solely a fantastic HUD, however making it broadly accessible throughout its mannequin line-up.

The instrument cluster isn’t something fancy, that includes a 7.0-inch display screen camouflaged as a 3rd analogue dial. It really works nicely; although, and is sweet and legible.

Second-row area isn’t earth-shattering but it surely’s hardly cramped. The outboard seats are heated, with a fold-down armrest revealing two cupholders and two USB-A retailers. Air vents could be discovered on the rear of the centre console together with rear local weather controls.

The CX-8 is actually a stretched CX-5, so it might by no means provide the width of the moribund CX-9. Being shorter general, it can also’t match it for third row area.

It’s a bit higher than the “bonus” third row present in some mid-sized SUVs just like the Outlander, and is about on par with a Santa Fe or Sorento.

However, the third-row seats are finest suited to youngsters. At 180cm tall, if I sit upright I discover my head brushing the roof. Toe room is restricted and knee room is common.

There aren’t many facilities again right here, in distinction with a Santa Fe Elite. There are cupholders on both facet, however it’s essential to step as much as the GT SP to get a pair of USB-A retailers again right here. No CX-8 could be had with third-row air vents, disappointingly.

By giving the CX-8 such comparable styling to the CX-9, Mazda has given it comparable points. The curve to the roofline and tailgate eats into headroom barely, and makes the cargo bay a much less sensible form.

Baggage capability is 209L with all three rows up, measured to the roof, 775L when the third row is folded down and 1727L with the second and third rows folded.

What’s underneath the bonnet?

The CX-8 D35 is powered by a 2.2-litre twin-turbo four-cylinder diesel producing 140kW of energy and 450Nm of torque.

That’s the identical energy as the bottom petrol engine, however a whopping 198Nm extra torque. It additionally compares favourably with the 148kW/440Nm 2.2-litre TD within the rival Santa Fe and Sorento. Drive is distributed to all 4 wheels through a six-speed automated transmission.

The official mixed cycle declare is 6.0L/100km, and we averaged 6.5L/100km on a loop comprising inner-city, suburban and freeway driving. Over the course of our time with the automobile, this went down additional to six.4L/100km.

Certain, there’s a premium over the petrol engine, however the petrol makes use of extra gasoline (it’s rated at 8.1L/100km) and is a much less interesting engine general, plus comes solely with front-wheel drive.

How does the Mazda CX-8 drive?

I’ll be trustworthy: I’ve by no means been the largest fan of diesels, at the least not four-cylinder ones. The usually good gasoline economic system and low-end torque is all the time welcome; though, there’s arguably better complexity.

However what bothers me is the way in which they sound. 4-cylinder diesel engines particularly have an engine be aware that irritates me, and whereas many trendy diesels have come a great distance in refinement, a few of that clatter nonetheless seeps in.

Think about my shock, then, when I discovered myself truly having fun with not solely the responsiveness of the CX-8’s turbo-diesel, but in addition the way in which it sounds.

There’s a tiny little bit of clatter on startup, and like most Mazda engines it’s a bit noisier when it’s chilly. However punch it and this turbo-diesel has a sporty be aware that sounds extra like a turbocharged petrol engine than your typical oil-burner.

You may see why Mazda thought providing this engine within the previous 3 Astina XD heat hatch made sense.

There are not any distracting noises coming from the engine bay, and noise suppression general is sort of good with little highway noise. There’s solely somewhat little bit of tyre roar at freeway speeds.

The six-speed automated transmission could look just a few gears brief these days, however there’s no arguing with how adeptly it really works. It by no means will get caught out, and its shifts are all the time easy.

The experience errs on the agency facet, but it surely smooths out bumps and craggy roads properly. The physique additionally settles pretty shortly over patchier pavement and undulations, and the CX-8 doesn’t wallow.

There’s a little bit of physique roll in corners, however that’s to be anticipated from an SUV this dimension.

The responsive powertrain means overtaking is a stress-free exercise, at the least with one individual on board.

Even in case you needed extra responsiveness, there’s no Sport mode to name upon – you may choose between solely Regular and Off-Street. There are paddle shifters; nevertheless, if you wish to manually shift gears.

The steering has a satisfying weighting that’s constant in any respect speeds; though, this does imply it doesn’t actually loosen up at low speeds. You could must perform a little extra arm-twirling within the CX-8, then, to get right into a parking area, although we’d cease wanting calling the tiller heavy.

There’s no lane-centring within the Touring Energetic, however there’s a lane-keep help system that helps preserve you from veering into one other lane with out being overbearing on a regular basis.

The adaptive cruise management activates with a single button press, and the pace could be simply seen within the useful head-up show. The visitors signal recognition system will even show cease indicators and the like along with the posted pace restrict.

There’s an automated cease/begin system, and it additionally avoids feeling too intrusive like comparable techniques in some rivals. It is advisable firmly push the brake to activate it, nevertheless.

The steering-guided headlights with automated high-beam work a deal with, significantly on a winding highway.

What do you get?

CX-8 Sport highlights:

  • Computerized LED headlights
  • Computerized high-beam
  • Heated, power-folding exterior mirrors
  • Rain-sensing wipers
  • 60:40 break up/fold second row and 50:50 break up/fold third row
  • Black fabric upholstery
  • Tri-zone local weather management
  • 7.0-inch instrument cluster display screen
  • Leather-based-wrapped steering wheel and shifter
  • Tilt and telescopic steering wheel adjustment
  • 2 x entrance USB-C charging ports
  • 10.25-inch infotainment system
  • Wi-fi Apple CarPlay and Wired Android Auto
  • DAB+ digital radio
  • Satellite tv for pc navigation
  • 6-speaker stereo system
  • Keyless begin
  • Two ISOFIX ports and 5 high tether factors
  • Cargo space 12V outlet

CX-8 Touring provides:

  • 8-way energy driver’s seat
  • 6-way energy passenger seat
  • Two x USB-A charging ports in second row
  • Black leather-based upholstery
  • Keyless entry
  • Entrance parking sensors

CX-8 Touring Energetic provides:

  • Adaptive front-lighting system
  • LED daytime working lights
  • 10-way energy driver’s seat
  • Heated outboard second-row seats
  • Revera Stone Maztex/Gray Material upholstery

There are GT SP, Asaki and Asaki LE trim ranges above the Touring Energetic.

To step as much as the GT SP, you’ll pay an additional $2000 however lose all-wheel drive and drop right down to a naturally aspirated petrol engine. The diesel-powered GT SP, in distinction, prices an additional $8650 over the D35 Touring Energetic.

That further outlay does get you an influence tailgate, energy sunroof, 10-speaker Bose sound system, wi-fi cellphone charger and a few further comfort options, however the Touring Energetic strikes stability when it comes to worth – in case you’re nice with fabric trim.

Is the Mazda CX-8 protected?

The Mazda CX-8 has a five-star ANCAP security ranking primarily based on testing performed in 2018.

It acquired an grownup occupant safety ranking of 96 per cent, a toddler occupant safety ranking of 87 per cent, a susceptible highway person safety ranking of 72 per cent, and a security help ranking of 73 per cent.

All 2023 CX-8 fashions obtain the next security tools:

  • Autonomous emergency braking
  • Adaptive cruise management
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Driver consideration warning
  • Clever pace restrict help
  • Lane-keep help
  • Lane departure warning
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Reversing digicam
  • Site visitors signal recognition
  • Tyre strain monitoring
  • Entrance, front-side and curtain airbags

Touring and up get entrance parking sensors, whereas GT SP and up get Cruising and Site visitors Assist and the Asaki and Asaki LE additionally obtain a surround-view digicam.

How a lot does the Mazda CX-8 value to run?

The Mazda CX-8 is backed by Mazda’s five-year, unlimited-kilometre guarantee.

Mazda nonetheless requires servicing each 12 months or 10,000km: pretty brief intervals. The primary seven companies are capped at $368, $569, $566, $569, $368, $768, and $368, or $3576 over seven years.

A Santa Fe diesel prices $3470 and a Sorento diesel $3513 over the identical interval and each have longer 12-month/15,000km intervals.

CarExpert’s Tackle the Mazda CX-8

When you like the thought of a refined mid-sized crossover with a gutsy turbo-diesel engine and a 3rd row good for at the least occasional use, the CX-8 makes a robust case for itself.

The powertrain is even higher than that of a Santa Fe or Sorento; although, its third row is a much less interesting place wherein to sit down than these rivals.

It boasts a quiet, well-appointed cabin, whereas it has a agency but snug experience and good steering really feel that stops this SUV from feeling an excessive amount of like a boring household bus.

It’s a disgrace to see the CX-8 go, as we strongly suspect the upcoming CX-80 will likely be a dearer mannequin. Mazda is due to this fact killing its most reasonably priced three-row SUV, and in addition axing a pleasant turbo-diesel engine together with it.

With no diesel-powered, three-row Outlander, CR-V or X-Path crossovers accessible and the diesel Tiguan Allspace lifeless, the CX-8’s strongest competitors comes from the Santa Fe and Sorento.

Just like the CX-8, the Koreans make for compelling choices, and the Santa Fe is in runout mode too, forward of a daring new mannequin arriving in 2024.

We’d suggest trying out all three earlier than signing on the dotted line.

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