Skip to main content

Do people buy the best version of the 2023 Mazda CX-9? One trim level is more popular than all the others. Every version of the Mazda SUV is a viable option, but some are better than others. Most experts say the best CX-9 trim level is the most basic. Most experts recommend the base model 2023 Mazda CX-9 Touring trim, which means the three-row midsize SUV is better cheaper.

A gray 2023 Mazda CX-9 midsize SUV is parked.
The 2023 Mazda CX-9 | Mazda

According to Edmunds, the Grand Touring model is the most popular version of the 2023 Mazda CX-9. Out of five available options, one of the most expensive is the one people usually buy. In its most affordable form, the CX-9 Touring costs $40,025. However, opting for the Grand Touring model costs $46,965. What makes the Grand Touring model more popular than the base model?

Buying the Grand Touring trim adds a few key items to the Mazda CX-9. For example, a second-row bench seat with heating, a navigation system, a head-up display, a traffic sign recognition system, and a surround-view camera system. Most prominently, we think buyers are sold on the heated second-row bench seat, which adds extra passenger space and comfort. Sometimes, seating one extra person inside an SUV is well worth the added cost.

Experts recommend the most basic 2023 Mazda CX-9

Front angle view of Machine Gray Metallic 2023 Mazda CX-9 midsize SUV
Machine Gray Metallic 2023 Mazda CX-9 | Mazda

Buying the best version of the 2023 Mazda CX-9 is easy. Instead of opting for the most popular or expensive trims, experts like the cheapest model the best. First, Edmunds says to get the Touring trim because it has a “generous level of standard content.” However, it also likes the slightly more costly Touring Plus model, which adds ventilated seats and a third-row bench. For $42,625, there isn’t a significant difference between the two base trims.

Next, Car and Driver recommend the same CX-9 Touring model. “The entry-level Touring model offers plenty of desirable features right out of the gate, including a power-operated rear liftgate, leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, and keyless entry with push-button start. This model also comes standard with second-row captain’s chairs—a feature many three-row SUV buyers want.”

Why is the CX-9 better cheaper?

The interior of a 2023 Mazda CX-9.
The 2023 Mazda CX-9 | Mazda

Fortunately, the costly three-row SUV segment has the 2023 Mazda CX-9. While many alternatives don’t offer excellent features in their lowest trims, the CX-9 does. It’s better cheaper because every version comes equipped with fantastic features. In addition, the standard turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine makes 227 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Edmunds says it provides strong acceleration and sporty handling.

Next, every CX-9 comes with a long list of technology and convenience features, including a few excellent driver aids. For example, standard all-wheel drive, LED headlights, rain-sensing wipers, a sunroof, triple-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, second-row captain’s chairs, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a six-speaker audio system, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, USB ports in the first and second rows, and a wireless charging pad.

For driver aids, the suite of features is outstanding. Each CX-9 has adaptive cruise control, forward collision mitigation, blind-spot warning with rear cross-traffic alert, and lane-keeping assistance.

With all of these features and more, buyers get added value from the lower trim. Furthermore, the 2023 Mazda CX-9 Touring and Touring Plus beat the competition in many ways regarding value. Finding your favorite features with the most affordable, basic model is rare, so enjoy it.


Experts Disagree on the Best 2023 Mazda CX-5 Trim