The Mazda CX-5 crossover had hardly left the stage from its Los Angeles Auto Show debut when Mazda released something else: the CX-5’s newly class-leading fuel economy numbers.
The CX-5 will get Mazda’s new 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G four-cylinder engine, which is rated at 155 horsepower and 150 pound-feet of torque. That engine can be mated to a six-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmission, and automatic models also have available all-wheel drive.
The base model, the front-wheel-drive manual, will be rated by the Environmental Protection Agency at 26 mpg city and 33 mpg highway, while the front-wheel drive automatic gets 26 mpg city and 32 mpg highway. All-wheel-drive automatic models get 25 mpg city and 30 mpg highway.
The numbers are good enough to shoot the upcoming CX-5 to the top of the current pile of non-hybrid compact crossovers. Its closest competition comes in the form of the Nissan Juke, which gets 27 mpg city and 32 mpg highway, when equipped with the six-speed manual transmission and front-wheel drive.
We say current pile because it’s important to note that the dark horse in the compact crossover economy race is the upcoming Ford Escape. The upcoming model loses the hybrid powertrain but also gains two EcoBoost turbocharged four-cylinder engines. Early predictions say that the 1.6-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost motor could help the Escape achieve up to 36 mpg on the highway.
The only way for Mazda to compete with numbers like that would be to sell the CX-5 with the oft-mentioned Skyactiv-D engine, which is already compatible with emissions regulations in all 50 states, but grafting the American-market CX-5 with an oil burner is as yet unconfirmed, according to the manufacturer.
For more on the 2013 Mazda CX-5, check out our First Look here. For more on the 2011 Los Angeles Show, including videos, the latest photos, and more information, click here to visit our L.A. Show homepage.