2019 Mazda CX-5 vs. 2019 Hyundai Tucson

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the CX-5 and the Tucson have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and lane departure warning systems.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Mazda CX-5 is safer than the Hyundai Tucson:

CX-5

Tucson

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

82

172

Neck Compression

23 lbs.

97 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

156

226

Chest Compression

.5 inches

.6 inches

Neck Injury Risk

37%

37%

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Mazda CX-5 is safer than the Hyundai Tucson:

CX-5

Tucson

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

81

94

Chest Movement

.5 inches

.8 inches

Hip Force

189 lbs.

356 lbs.

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

208

241

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

14 inches

Spine Acceleration

32 G’s

48 G’s

Hip Force

435 lbs.

1028 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the CX-5 its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 45 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Tucson is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2019.

Reliability

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the CX-5’s reliability 34 points higher than the Tucson.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Mazda vehicles are more reliable than Hyundai vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mazda third in reliability. Hyundai is ranked 10th.

Engine

The CX-5’s standard 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 23 more horsepower (187 vs. 164) and 35 lbs.-ft. more torque (186 vs. 151) than the Tucson SE/Value’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The CX-5’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 6 more horsepower (187 vs. 181) and 11 lbs.-ft. more torque (186 vs. 175) than the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature’s standard 2.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 69 more horsepower (250 vs. 181) and 135 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 175) than the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

The CX-5’s 2.2 turbo diesel produces 4 more horsepower (168 vs. 164) and 139 lbs.-ft. more torque (290 vs. 151) than the Tucson SE/Value’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The CX-5’s 2.2 turbo diesel produces 115 lbs.-ft. more torque (290 vs. 175) than the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Mazda CX-5 is faster than the Hyundai Tucson:

CX-5 4 cyl.

CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature

Tucson SE/Value

Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate

Zero to 60 MPH

8.6 sec

6.4 sec

11 sec

9.6 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

5.4 sec

n/a

6.9 sec

4.9 sec

Quarter Mile

16.6 sec

14.9 sec

18.3 sec

17.3 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

85 MPH

93.6 MPH

80.2 MPH

83 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the CX-5 gets better fuel mileage than the Tucson:

MPG

CX-5

FWD

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/31 hwy

2.5 turbo 4 cyl.

23 city/28 hwy

AWD

2.2 turbo 4 cyl. Diesel

27 city/30 hwy

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

24 city/30 hwy

2.5 turbo 4 cyl.

22 city/27 hwy

Tucson

FWD

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

23 city/30 hwy

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

22 city/28 hwy

AWD

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

22 city/25 hwy

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

21 city/26 hwy

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the CX-5 2.5 non-turbo’s fuel efficiency. The Tucson doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Tucson:

CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature

Tucson

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

12 inches

The CX-5 stops shorter than the Tucson:

CX-5

Tucson

60 to 0 MPH

123 feet

128 feet

Motor Trend

Suspension and Handling

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the CX-5’s wheelbase is 1.1 inches longer than on the Tucson (106.2 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

For greater off-road capability the CX-5 has a 1.1 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Tucson (7.5 vs. 6.4 inches), allowing the CX-5 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Passenger Space

The CX-5 has .1 inches more front headroom, 1.4 inches more rear legroom and .8 inches more rear hip room than the Tucson.

The front step up height for the CX-5 is 1.4 inches lower than the Tucson (17.6” vs. 19”). The CX-5’s rear step up height is 1.8 inches lower than the Tucson’s (18.2” vs. 20”).

Cargo Capacity

The CX-5’s cargo area is larger than the Tucson’s in almost every dimension:

CX-5

Tucson

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

38”/n.a.

34.3”/69.5”

Max Width

57”

53”

Min Width

41.3”

40.7”

Height

32.4”

35.2”

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the CX-5’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Tucson doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Towing

The CX-5’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Tucson’s (2000 vs. 1500 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Hyundai Tucson is only 1500 pounds. The CX-5 offers up to a 3500 lbs. towing capacity.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the CX-5 Grand Touring/Signature, the memory seats make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Tucson doesn’t offer memory seats.

The CX-5 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Tucson doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The CX-5’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Tucson’s standard power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.

Consumer Reports rated the CX-5’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Tucson’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The CX-5’s headlights were rated “Good” to “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Tucson’s headlights are rated “Acceptable” to “Poor.”

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the CX-5 owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the CX-5 with a number “1” insurance rate while the Tucson is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the CX-5 is less expensive to operate than the Tucson because it costs $261 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost less on the CX-5 than the Tucson, including $91 less for a water pump, $107 less for a muffler and $17 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Mazda CX-5, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Hyundai Tucson isn't recommended.

Motor Trend performed a comparison test in its April 2019 issue and they ranked the Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD three places higher than the Hyundai Tucson Ultimate AWD.

The CX-5 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 2 of the last 2 years. The Tucson has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.

The Mazda CX-5 outsold the Hyundai Tucson by 6% during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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