Mazda CX-5 vs. Mazda CX-50: The difference isn’t “0” - San Leandro Mazda

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Mazda CX-5 vs. Mazda CX-50: The difference isn’t “0”

We understand that when Mazda announced the all-new 2023 Mazda CX-50, a logical question might have been, “what’s the difference between the CX-5 and the CX-50, besides the “0” in the name?”

Glad you asked!

What’s NOT Different

Let’s first cover what’s the same between the two models, because the CX-5 has been Mazda’s most popular model so, understandably, there’s a lot to NOT change when launching a similarly named sibling.

To begin, they share the same KODO Soul of Motion design philosophy, so they both look decidedly “Mazda” in styling. That’s definitely a good thing. They also both enjoy the same 2.5 liter SkyActiv engine, which delivers 187 hp and 186 lb-ft torque in the naturally-aspirated version and 256 hp and 320 lb-ft torque in the turbocharged version. Per the auto enthusiasts who have reviewed both models, either choice rewards the driver with an enjoyable on-road driving experience and a very refined interior, including Mazda’s impressive infotainment system.

Prices are also very similar, with the 2022 Mazda CX-5 starting at $27,870 and the 2023 Mazda CX-50 — a newer model year — just slightly north, at $29,247.

Here’s Why the CX-50 Exists

Mazda could have tweaked the CX-5 a bit and tried to make the same model cover two distinct markets. But the designers and engineers at Mazda are purists, so they dedicated themselves to subtle-yet-significant characteristics that distinguish the CX-50 as something truly different.

Simply put, the Mazda CX-50 is the more rugged, outdoorsy sibling. Its body is 1.4 inches lower, 3.0 inches wider, and 5.7 inches longer. (And, yes, the wheelbase is also longer by 4.6 inches). That results in a wide, athletic stance for the CX-50 and a smooth, stable ride. However — and significantly — the CX-50 also has 8.5 inches of ground clearance, or about 1 inch more than the CX-5. For dirt roads, that can be a big deal.

Notably, for those who crave outdoor adventure, the Mazda CX-50 also has a 3,500 lb towing capacity, while the Mazda CX-5 is satisfied to limit itself to a 2,000 lb limit. Clearly another significant difference that one wouldn’t notice from appearance alone.

Which One is for You?

Well, do prefer to zip around the Bay Area, enjoying all that San Francisco and surrounding towns have to offer? Or do you see yourself venturing throughout Northern California’s vast outdoors and beyond? If you’re looking for a slightly more refined vehicle without the need for more rugged characteristics, you cannot go wrong with the wildly popular Mazda CX-5. Conversely, if you want to load your recreation gear and go, checkout the all-new 2023 Mazda CX-50.

Where to Get a Mazda CX-50

No matter which model you choose, San Leandro Mazda is eager to answer any questions you may have and we currently have a nice selection of both, with more on the way. But be reminded that the overall auto industry is experiencing unprecedented inventory supply challenges, so both the Mazda CX-5 and the Mazda CX-50 are moving quickly once they hit the showroom floor. We can, however, reserve one of our incoming vehicles for you, and let you know when it arrives.

Visit San Leandro Mazda in San Leandro, California, and find a new Mazda perfect for you. Learn more about the new 2023 Mazda CX-50 from our friendly, knowledgeable team. San Leandro Mazda experts will help you explore the different trims, features and options that best suit your needs. Or create a Custom Order at San Leandro Mazda to build everything in a new Mazda just the way you like it, including colors, cabin materials, wheel designs, packages and options. And keep your Mazda running like it’s supposed to with a visit to our state-of-the-art San Leandro Mazda Service Center in San Leandro, California, one of the East Bay Area’s few Mazda-authorized Mazda service shops.