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QUALITY | 8 out of 10
surprisingly top-notch interior
Car and Driver
more luxury touches than the less expensive CX-7
Kelley Blue Book
We're especially taken with the way the CX-9's flexible seating package works for us
The 2010 Mazda CX-9 offers one of the roomiest seating packages among vehicles its size. That said, the third row will still be tight for most adult passengers, and entry and exit isn’t easy. Otherwise, the CX-9 offers a very comfortable interior.
Kelley Blue Book says seating is a high priority in this Mazda; the CX-9 blends "front bucket seats and two-tone trim [that says] 'sports car'" with the passenger comfort and cargo capacity of a minivan. Second-row seats can be folded down to afford extra legroom for adults in the third-row seats. Additionally, the second-row seat slides five inches and has "reclining backrests." ConsumerGuide describes the 2010 Mazda CX-9 as having "ample legroom with chair-height seating [that] provides a commanding view forward and to the side."
Motor Trend cautions that "of course, the Mazda CX-9 isn't perfect, delivering the slightest first-row legroom of the other three-row crossovers in its class."
Edmunds says the "the 60/40-split second-row seat offers 5 inches of fore and aft travel for added comfort." They further describe the 2009 Mazda CX-9: "although the measurements for passenger accommodation are impressive, the CX-9 still seems a little tight to us (especially in headroom)."
Cargo space is pretty good in the 2010 Mazda CX-9; Cars.com points to "17.2 cubic feet of cargo room behind the 50/50-split third-row seat, which can also fold flat." With 100.7 cubic feet of cargo space with the second- and third-rows folded flat, the Mazda CX-9 is perfect for weekend trips to IKEA.
Build quality is as sturdy as you might expect from Mazda—which is to say, it’s great, but don’t expect luxury-style details. Car and Driver notes the "top-notch interior" and figures "the [Mazda 2009] CX-9 should enjoy an impressive resale value." ConsumerGuide remarks, "some materials feel hard to the touch and sound hollow, cheapening the atmosphere a bit" and "coarse-surface tire thrum is intrusive, particularly in the Grand Touring." They also dislike the instrument panel lighting, pointing out there are only two settings: day (which is too bright) and night (which is too dim).
Finally, ride quality should be a consideration when you’re looking at the 2010 Mazda CX-9. ConsumerGuide reports that "this crossover rides more firmly than others in this class." But Kelley Blue Book notes that the Mazda CX-9 "rides smoothly and quietly at freeway speeds." Be sure to take it out on a variety of roads on the test drive.
The 2010 Mazda CX-9 has a very roomy, functional interior with a price-appropriate look and feel.