IF there’s one aspect where Mazda CX-7 breaks from the pack, it’s definitely styling.
Diverting from the conventional heavy, boxy look of SUVs, the CX-7 exudes a sporty feel with its dashing windshield that is slanted at 66 degrees like that in the Mazda RX-8, protruding front fenders and wheels that are pushed forward, independent and larger lower grille and the Mazda logo, smooth curves at both sides of its body, and a solid rear end. Just a mere look at it may make you think of a hawk that is all ready to soar in the clear sky.
Inside, interiors are equally athletic in nature. With an upright and multi-adjustable driver’s seat, it provides the driver a better view of what’s ahead, making everyone inside the car feel like they’re prepared for a race all the time, while the sense of security and safety is never relinquished. The meter cluster is inspired by the Mazda RX-8 again, while certain car feature buttons are in their right places on the center panel for easy access. The passengers are guaranteed to feel comfortable as the front seats and area are wide enough, while the rear seats can easily hold three people.
There’s also a plenty of space for valuables. Between the front seats is a large multi-purpose floor console perfect for storing stuff like laptops and other gadgets, and an upper level container with a more spacious area. Looking at the cargo room may lead one into thinking that there’s limited space, but by folding the backseats with the use of the handles inside the tailgate, the car will instantly offer a lot of flat space for the luggage.
The CX-7 is equipped with numerous safety features such as the new curtain airbags which don’t only protect the occupants during side collisions, but also even during a rollover. Included as standard are ABS with EBD and brake assist, dynamic stability control as well as traction control.
True to Mazda’s “Zoom-zoom” tagline, the CX-7 isn’t just sporty in the interior and exterior. It is also a performer. To make this possible, it borrowed features from its elder brothers like the front suspension of the Mazda MPV minivan, and the rear suspension of the Mazda 5. But to set it apart from other models and make it unique, it was endowed with a sports car’s agility and an SUV’s toughness.
The CX-7 has a 161-hp, 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine and a five-speed Activematic transmission which allows the driver to choose between automatic and manual shifting controls without affecting the vehicle’s performance, whichever mode is chosen. Its peak torque can be attained from 2,000 rpm up to 5,000 rpm. The engine is quick and responsive. If you feel the need for speed, especially during serious overtaking, the engine will be more than happy to grant your wish. At P1.533 million, it should rank up there among the most desirable SUVs on the market today.
Vehicle: 2011 Mazda CX-7
Type: Sports SUV
Engine: 2.5-liter inline-four cylinder DOHC 16-valve S-VT
Maximum power: 163 PS at 6,000 rpm
Maximum torque: 205 Nm at 2,200 rpm
Transmission: Five-speed A/T floor shift
Length: 4,699 mm
Width: 1,872 mm
Height: 1,645 mm
Wheelbase: 2,750 mm
Wheel size and type: 17-inch alloy
Tire size: 215/70 R17
Price as tested P1.533 million