Mazda and Kia are two vehicle brands that are much appreciated by Quebecers. Each has a good selection of SUVs, several of which have won awards and praise from journalists like those of The Car Guide.
A driver and family man we recently met said he was hesitating between a Mazda CX-5 and a Kia Sorento, both pre-owned. It is indeed a good dilemma; one that many people may be stuck with, so, for everyone’s benefit, we’ll try to answer a few questions.
Since 3 to 4 years old models are the most popular, we’ll focus on the recent generations.
Sold since 2017, the current-generation CX-5 is a great achievement from Mazda in terms of design refinement, driveability and technology. It offers two good 2.5-litre engines (the short-lived 2.2-litre diesel doesn’t deserve much attention): the first is naturally aspirated and produces 187 horsepower, while the other is turbocharged and generates up to 250 horsepower … and 320 ft-lb of torque!
Powerful and athletic, the CX-5 shines on the road. Its steering and road handling are very likeable. The safety features can be numerous depending on the trim, but be aware that some of these electronic aids can become annoying. In the Signature top-end trim, the cabin’s comfort and the quality of the materials essentially provide a luxury experience.
Unfortunately, the user-friendliness of the multimedia system is a major downside. The interior space is also a bit smaller (875 litres and 1,687 with the backseat down), and the towing capacity is limited to 2,000 lb. Lastly, the rear visibility isn’t optimal and the turbo engine is quite thirsty.
Regarding the Sorento (2016 to 2020), its practicality and quality/price ratio are two of its strengths. Once again, two four-cylinders are offered: a naturally aspirated 2.4-litre with 185 horsepower, and a turbocharged 2.0-litre with 240 horsepower. But that’s not all; a 3.3-litre V6 producing 290 horsepower allows you to tow up to 5000 pounds. This is ideal for a big camping trailer or to bring your boat to the lake! And let’s not forget the all-wheel drive, which has become standard equipment in 2020.
With its ample interior space, the Sorento is suitable for families with three children or more (it can seat seven people) and those who have a very active lifestyle. With all seats folded, you get 2,082 litres of cargo space.
Considering its stronger depreciation, the Sorento is worth less than a comparable CX-5. In addition, the third row becomes a little less attractive when you see how confined it is. And because of its heavier weight, we don’t recommend the basic engine, which struggles a bit and ends up costing more at the pump.
Now, you and your family can hopefully make a better choice!