Mazda CX-5 vs Hyundai Tucson – Uncover the Best Choice

The 2024 Mazda CX-5 and 2024 Hyundai Tucson are small SUVs that look nice.

They both have designs that go beyond what you usually see in practical and family-friendly SUVs.

The CX-5 has curves and smooth fenders, while the Tucson has straight lines and headlights that fit nicely into its front grille.

But, there’s more to these SUVs than just looking good.

An image of a Mazda CX-5 and Hyundai Tucson
Mazda CX-and Hyundai Tucson

The CX-5 feels fancy because it handles well and has a nice inside.

The Tucson is all about giving you good value.

It comes with a bunch of features, and if you want extras, they won’t make the price super high.

Let’s check out how the CX-5 and Tucson compare in more detail.

Highlights

Let’s look at the overall highlights of both before we dive into a detailed review.

Hyundai Tucson (2024)

The Hyundai Tucson got a bold new look in 2022, and it still feels fresh in 2024.

Updates for 2024 make it even better, with rear-side airbags now standard, the optional 10.25-inch touchscreen available in more models, and dual-zone climate control added to the SEL trim.

You can get the 2024 Hyundai Tucson in four trims: SE, SEL, XRT, and Limited.

The starting price is $27,250 for the SE, and it goes up to $36,510 for the Limited.

This is a good deal compared to many other SUVs like the Mazda CX-5.

All Tucson models have a 187-hp 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine with an 8-speed automatic transmission.

You can choose between front-wheel drive (FWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD).

Hyundai also offers the Tucson as a hybrid or plug-in hybrid if you’re into more eco-friendly options.

Mazda CX-5 (2024)

The Mazda CX-5 gets a few tweaks for the 2024 model year.

There’s a new version called Carbon Turbo, but the old entry-level S trim is no longer available.

The base 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine now has a fuel-saving stop/start feature.

All CX-5s come with all-wheel drive (AWD).

You can choose to upgrade to a turbocharged 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine that gives you 227 horsepower with regular gasoline or 256 horsepower with premium 93-octane fuel.

Prices start at $29,300 for the CX-5 2.5 S Select and go up to $40,600 for the CX-5 2.5 Turbo Signature.

Keep in mind, that these prices don’t include the dealer destination fees.

Comparison Between the Mazda CX-5 and Hyundai Tucson

An infographic representing the Mazda CX-5 and Hyundai Tucson features
Mazda CX-5 and Hyundai Tucson difference

Reliability

Avoiding breakdowns is always a plus, and choosing a reliable vehicle is a smart way to do that.

In terms of reliability, the CX-5 edges out the Tucson.

It’s predicted to have a reliability score of 82 out of 100 by J.D. Power, while the Tucson comes in slightly lower with a score of 80 out of 100.

Just to give you an idea, a J.D. Power predicted reliability score of 91-100 is considered the Best, 81-90 is Great, 70-80 is Average, and below 70 is Fair, which is considered below average.

Even though the Tucson didn’t win in the reliability score, it makes up for it with a more extensive warranty compared to the CX-5. Hyundai’s SUV offers a five-year/60,000-mile limited warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain protection.

On the other hand, the CX-5 comes with a three-year/36,000-mile limited warranty and five-year/60,000-mile powertrain coverage.

Seat Comfort

An image of the seat arrangement in a Mazda CX-5
Spacious back seat in a Mazda CX-5

Both the Tucson and CX-5 are SUVs that can comfortably accommodate five passengers, offering comfortable seating for those in the front row.

In terms of front-row comfort, they are quite comparable, providing pleasant support for everyday driving.

However, when it comes to the second row, there’s a notable difference.

The Tucson offers more space for rear passengers to stretch their legs, giving it the upper hand in this aspect.

Specifically, the Tucson provides 41.3 inches of rear legroom, whereas the CX-5 has slightly less with up to 39.7 inches.

If you prioritize ample space for second-row passengers in a small SUV, the Hyundai Tucson would be the preferable choice.

Cargo Space

An image of the cargo space in a Hyundai Tucson
Spacious Cargo Space in a Hyundai Tucson

When it comes to utility and cargo space, the Tucson outshines the CX-5.

The Tucson offers ample cargo room with 38.7 cubic feet when all seats are in place and an impressive 74.8 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down.

On the other hand, the Mazda CX-5 falls behind in this aspect.

It provides 30.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats, and folding those seats expands the cargo room to 59.3 cubic feet.

Both models come with a standard manual liftgate, and a power liftgate is available as an option for added convenience.

If you prioritize generous cargo space in an SUV, the Tucson stands out as the more accommodating choice.

Interior Quality

The quality of an SUV’s interior can greatly influence your overall satisfaction with the vehicle.

A subpar cabin can leave a negative impression on both the driver and passengers.

In the case of the CX-5 and Tucson, both offer impressive interior quality.

Their cabins feature attractive designs and sturdy build quality. Additionally, both SUVs excel in noise insulation, effectively keeping wind and road noise at bay for a comfortable ride.

However, the CX-5 takes the lead in this category, boasting a more upscale and deluxe interior compared to the Tucson.

The CX-5’s cabin can even rival those found in entry-level luxury SUVs.

If you prioritize a small SUV with a plush and luxurious interior, the Mazda CX-5 is the recommended choice.

Interior Features

An image of an interior of the Mazda CX-5
Classy Mazda CX-5 interior

When it comes to interior features, the Mazda CX-5 stands out by providing better standard equipment compared to the Tucson. Notably, the base model of the Tucson comes with an 8-inch touchscreen, while the CX-5’s standard touchscreen is larger at 10.25 inches.

Additionally, the CX-5’s base trim includes dual-zone automatic climate control, a feature not standard in the Tucson.

Both SUVs offer attractive amenities such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, along with two standard USB ports.

However, the enhanced standard features on the CX-5, including the larger touch screen and dual-zone climate control, make it the preferable choice for those who prioritize a well-equipped interior for a more enjoyable driving experience.

Acceleration

Both the Hyundai Tucson and the Mazda CX-5 start with a base engine that delivers 187 horsepower.

However, the CX-5 utilizes this power more efficiently, resulting in slightly quicker acceleration compared to the Tucson.

The Tucson takes approximately 9 seconds to accelerate from zero to 60 mph, and its engine tends to get noisy during aggressive acceleration.

On the other hand, the Mazda CX-5 achieves a quicker time, going from zero to 60 mph in 8.9 seconds with its standard engine.

If you’re looking for even more performance, the CX-5 provides an engine upgrade option.

This upgraded engine produces 227 horsepower with regular gas and 256 horsepower with premium-grade gasoline.

With this powertrain, the CX-5 can accelerate from a standstill to 60 mph in just 7.3 seconds.

Unfortunately, the Tucson only comes with one engine option, so there are no available powertrain upgrades for those seeking enhanced performance.

Fuel Economy

When considering an SUV for a long commute, fuel efficiency becomes a crucial factor.

Gas mileage can vary significantly, impacting your monthly fuel expenses.

For the front-wheel-drive Tucson, you can expect 25 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.

With all-wheel drive, these numbers slightly decrease to 23/29 mpg city/highway.

The Mazda CX-5 is exclusively available with all-wheel drive.

The base engine offers a fuel efficiency of 26 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway.

While the Tucson has better overall fuel economy, the CX-5 excels in gas mileage when compared to the all-wheel-drive model of the Tucson.

If you prioritize all-wheel drive and fuel efficiency, the Mazda CX-5 emerges as the stronger choice.

Ride and Handling

The Hyundai Tucson provides a comfortable ride with effective insulation against harshness in the cabin.

It exhibits stable driving dynamics and responsive steering, making it a pleasant option for daily commuting.

However, when it comes to performance, the Mazda CX-5 surpasses the Tucson.

The CX-5 offers a ride quality that is not only smooth but also responsive.

It features quick steering and confident braking, and its handling strikes an ideal balance between comfort and sportiness.

The Mazda CX-5 is often regarded as one of the most enjoyable-to-drive SUVs in its class, making it the winner in this category.

If you prioritize a more engaging and dynamic driving experience, the Mazda CX-5 stands out as the superior choice.

 

The Mazda CX-5 and Hyundai Tucson emerge as top contenders in the competitive small SUV segment. The CX-5 stands out for its energetic and engaging performance, while the Tucson boasts ample cargo space and a plethora of standard features.

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