When the Dieselgate scandal rocked the world a few years back, it seemed certain oil burners would disappear in the U.S. save for big pickup trucks. Diesels are still primarily
the domain of trucks, but smaller mills are finding homes in vehicles like the Chevrolet Colorado and, starting next year, the Jeep Gladiator. As of right now, however, you can go to Mazda and order up a CX-5 compact SUV with a twin-turbo 2.2-liter diesel. Well, you can pre-order it, anyway.
Our Take On The Current CX-5:
That’s right, the plucky diesel CX-5 has finally made it to U.S. shores and we’ll get right to the point. Nestled beneath the hood of this SUV is a Skyactiv-D 2.2-liter engine equipped with two turbochargers nestled into a single housing. It's estimated to produce 168 horsepower (125 kilowatts) and 290 pound-feet (393 Newton-meters) of torque, which slots the diesel beneath the standard-issue 2.5-liter four-cylinder by a few ponies. The torque rating, however, is nearly equal to the turbocharged 2.5-liter gas engine making 250 hp (186 kW).
As for efficiency, Mazda lists fuel mileage for the diesel CX-5 at 27 mpg city and 30 mpg highway, with a combined rating of 28 mpg. That easily outperforms the turbocharged four-pot at all levels, while besting the base engine by 4 mpg in the city and matching it on the highway. For small SUV shoppers looking for a bit more fizz without added thirst, the diesel CX-5 could be a contender.
There is a catch, however. Right now, Mazda lists the diesel as only available in the range-topping CX-5 Signature AWD model, and it can get pricey. Equipped with the 250-hp turbocharged gas engine the Signature starts at $36,890, but opting for the diesel pushes the MSRP to $41,000. Mileage-conscious SUV shoppers can step into a 2019 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid with more horsepower and better mileage ratings for considerably less cash, not to mention an all-wheel-drive Honda CR-V.
In its announcement, Mazda alluded to the diesel coming to other trim levels in the future but right now, you can only pre-order a CX-5 Diesel in Signature AWD format. Delivery dates haven’t been revealed, but with Mazda listing this as a 2019 model it should hit dealerships later this year.