There’s 1 Type of Driver Who Should Pick the Mazda CX-5 Over the Subaru Forester

The 2020 Subaru Forester is a fan-favorite because it’s versatile and capable. However, the Forester might leave certain drivers wanting more. If you fall under this category, you’ll want to consider the 2020 Mazda CX-5 instead. 

The 1 type of driver that should get the Mazda CX-5 over the Subaru Forester 

The Forester is an enjoyable ride, but it’s not without a few complaints. The main criticism of the Forester is that its 182-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine can feel pokey at times. Because of this, it doesn’t earn awards for speedy driving dynamics. Some enthusiasts also aren’t thrilled about the Forester’s standard continuously variable automatic transmission.

So, if you would like a more energetic experience, the CX-5 is a worthy alternative. The CX-5 offers a sports car feel in a compact SUV package. Respected critics like Consumer Reports appreciate the Forester for its unique capabilities, but acknowledge that it doesn’t have the same fun-to-drive elements that the CX-5 does. 

Unlike the Forester, the CX-5 features more than one engine option. Three to be exact, each with its own unique flavor. This Mazda comes with a 187-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder and a polished six-speed automatic transmission. The base engine offers plenty of power, and it is pretty quick too. 

The CX-5 is often compared to true luxury models, especially when equipped with the available turbo-four that puts out 227-hp. The turbo-four provides the most power and the most engaging experience in the CX-5. There’s also the optional 168-hp 2.2-liter turbocharged diesel engine.

The CX-5 has a luxury-focused interior too

The inside of the 2021 CX-5 offers a bold color scheme.
2021 Mazda CX-5 interior | Mazda

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The CX-5 is also ideal for those who want luxurious cabin comforts at a bargain price. Even if you stick with the base model, the CX-5 still presents one of the most attractive car cabins in its class. Its traditional cloth upholstery is pleasant, but you can upgrade to faux leather or genuine leather seats. Heated seats and a heated steering wheel are optional too. 

You will also appreciate the CX-5 for its tech offerings. It comes with a variety of active safety features, including blind-spot monitoring and automatic emergency braking. For 2020, the CX-5’s standard infotainment features aren’t as impressive, and you have to upgrade for Apple CarPlay and Android. These features will be standard on the 2021 version, though.

So, who should pick the Forester?

2019 Subaru Forester Sport parked in front of mountains
Subaru Forester Sport | Subaru

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Drivers whose main priorities are sensibility and efficiency will still gravitate toward the Forester. The Forester serves up many of Subaru’s best features, such as standard all-wheel-drive and a suite of advanced safety equipment. What also makes the Forester more compelling is that it’s capable of handling moderate off-roading adventures.

Additionally, those who have a minimalist sense of style will favor the Forester for this reason too. The Forester has a simple, inviting cabin that’s remarkably spacious. It also gets extra points for its user-friendly infotainment system and available amenities.