Sprint Review: Mazda CX-5 Carbon Edition

Special Editions. In the world of Japanese pick-ups and that British island in the North Atlantic, a special edition has become its very own antithesis. They’re so common that you’ll be hard pressed to find a standard model… so why did Mazda decide to plaster the word “Carbon” over this CX-5?

My first guess is to finally capitalise on the current black trend. You know, black wheels, black windows, black heart. Except that Mazda never follows the crowd and – especially because they tend to be late to the party – they come up with stylish design and cool phrases. Et voila – the CX-5 Carbon Edition was born!

You should know: Carbon is one of the most common elements in the universe but its relation to diamonds, fossil fuels and that indestructibly light fibre makes it quite the trendy choice. Full marks for the marketing department! So does this CX-5 have carbon seats? No. Carbonised drinks holders? Nope. Carbon fibre body panels? Oh, stop it.  

More info: It really is just a dark-themed derivative in the vehicle line-up, dressed up with some interesting details for those who like their lives to be shades of grey. The Polymetal Grey paint is mildly contrasted by pitch black wheels, blacked-out grill and window surrounds, as well as a jet black interior.

What else? It’s here – in the medium SUV’s wonderfully assembled interior – that you find the finer details. Red stitching, suede/alcantara seat inlays, BOSE sound system, fine chrome detailing and the accepted norm of space, features and comfort. Despite riding on 225/55R19 Toyo Proxes’, the ride is remarkably refined.  

Why you shouldn’t: I was going to start with the sticker price of 565-odd, but most cars in southern Africa are overpriced. Relatively speaking, it’s actually decent value. Next up would be its old-fashioned (naturally breathing) 2-litre engine and (torque convertor) 6-speed automatic gearbox. They’re boring but probably bulletproof.  

Why you should: Besides Johnny Cash or The Cure fans, any lovers of dark automobiles may step closer please. And for everyone else, there are a handful of other derivates on offer which may be less intimidating or luxurious but are more affordable and still well kitted out. There’s even an entry-level manual model!


Engine:2L i-4 petrol
Transmission:6-speed Automatic, FWD
Max. Power:121kW
Max. Torque:213Nm
Avg. cons.:(claimed 6.9)
0-100km/h:11.57 seconds (claimed 10.4)
Top Speed:No claim
List Price:R565,800  

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