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One Mazda SUV stands above the rest in reliability. After thorough evaluations, this model achieved the highest reliability score among the SUV lineup. Yet the most reliable Mazda SUV isn’t the brand’s best-selling vehicle. Which SUV is the most dependable? And which is the most popular? Here’s a look at the CX-9 and the CX-5.

Based on iSeeCars’ thorough testing, the CX-9 is the most reliable Mazda SUV. Specializing in the comprehensive analysis of over 12 million cars, iSeeCars determined the CX-9 achieved the highest reliability score among all Mazda SUVs tested to date. Its extensive testing methods, which consider performance, safety, and value retention, offer valuable insights, helping consumers make informed decisions before purchasing a vehicle.

The CX-9’s impressive reliability score highlights its exceptional dependability and long-lasting performance compared to other Mazda SUVs. This recognition positions the CX-9 as an excellent option for shoppers searching for a trustworthy SUV for daily use.

Still, the CX-9 has never been a big seller. In fact, Mazda confirmed it will replace the midsize three-row SUV with the upgraded CX-90.

The CX-5 is the brand’s bread and butter

Despite the CX-9 receiving a superb reliability score, it isn’t the most popular Mazda SUV. That distinction goes to the CX-5.

In the first quarter of 2023, the CX-9 sold 9,836 units. But the CX-5 outshined its bigger sibling with an impressive sales volume of 38,727 units, GoodCarBadCar reports.

The popularity of the CX-5 compared with the CX-9 can be attributed to several factors. Mazda is known for producing upscale, dynamic crossovers that rival more expensive SUVs. It’s a reputation that benefits both the CX-5 and CX-9.

But there are differences between the two models. One key distinction is size. The CX-5 is a two-row compact SUV, while the CX-9 is a three-row midsize SUV. The difference in size appeals to different sets of buyers, with the CX-5 attracting those who prioritize a compact and agile vehicle and the CX-9 appealing to those needing more seating.

Both SUVs have upscale interiors and spirited driving dynamics — qualities that align with the Mazda ethos of exceptional quality and performance. 

The Mazda CX-5 vs. Mazda CX-9

Both the CX-9 and CX-5 earned above-average reliability scores from iSeeCars. But the CX-9 is the most reliable Mazda SUV.

The CX-5 received a 7.2/10 for reliability and an overall 8.3/10. It also holds a commendable value retention score of 8.0/10 and a safety ranking of 9.9/10.

However, the CX-9 achieved a reliability score of 8.0/10 and an overall iSeeCars score of 8.4/10. It also earned a value retention score of 7.1/10 and a perfect safety ranking of 10/10.

Though the CX-9 is the most reliable Mazda SUV, it can’t touch the CX-5 in sales. Ultimately, the compact crossover’s overall package resonates well with more consumers, making it the darling of the lineup.


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