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2024 Mazda CX-90 GT PHEV

This week we were behind the 2024 Mazda CX-90, the full-sized crossover SUV that replaced the CX-9 in Mazda’s line up. With three rows of seats and the ability to seat six, excluding the driver; this is Mazda’s largest vehicle to date. And it certainly felt like it climbing in.

However, what we were interested in was this specific trim being both a sport centric model with the GT, as well as fuel friendly alternative with PHEV hybrid technology; all wrapped up in a family friendly people and cargo mover. The 2024 Mazda CX-90 GT PHEV reads like it is promising a lot, and it does deliver.

This PHEV showcases Mazda’s desire to continue pushing forward to introduce products based on the multiple solutions a driver may need for any one issue. In this case the best combination of gas and electronic engine.

Here, the CX-90 plug-in hybrid (PHEV) has the latest electrification technology, designed to control a larger engine, while still offering high output from the motor. This provides driving performance that optimizes fuel economy and acceleration in response to the driver’s pedal operation. Meaning that in “SPORT” mode nothing is diminished from the handling. The driver can still enjoy a powerful acceleration coupled with the roar of a gas engine that would typically come in tow with a GT trim.

And then on the other side of the spectrum when engaged in “EV” the CX-90 uses the electric motor power that runs on energy stored in its own dedicated battery pack. A battery pack you can either plug in to charge or wait to accrue from your regular city driving and stopping.

The latter most is especially important in our lifestyle. I like the idea and the cost savings of an EV vehicle, but cannot commit to a fully electric model, due to pump limitations and the time needed at them for an electric lifestyle. Instead, the PHEV hybrid gives you options on how you can fuel up. The fuel gauge split between EV and gas demonstrates this on the dash, like a reminder. And here, it feels like you are getting bonus free fuel, without having to commit to time at the charging station. A trip from Burnaby to Richmond gave us half the maximum charge.

Inside, the 2024 Mazda CX-90 feels luxe. There is plenty of space especially for the second row passengers with their individual reclining seats, much like that of the driver and passenger. With the ability to adjust and save settings, coupled with individual climate control. Buckled in as a passenger you don’t feel any bump or disturbances on the road. What you get is a smooth drive.

In matching comfort fashion, I appreciated the wider arm rest, designed for two. This transitions into an equally wide centre console with a stylized pattern face plate.

As for the way it handles, the CX-90 didn’t feel like a sports car. Its larger size and girth definitely contributed to the heavier wheel, stiffer turns, and the need to stomp down on the gas pedal for acceleration. You even had to the crank the gear shift to get it going. Although considering its size, the power, and the response you are able to get, I can definitely see the GT side coming through.

Minor grips are the with the sunroof and the charging pad. The sunroof appears to be large with two panels offering an overhead view for the front two rows. However only the first one opens up and at most only ajar. More as a draft in a cracked open window, and not the simulated top down experience I was expecting.

And I couldn’t help but get frustrated over the charging pad. A wide non-slip rubber that required positioning the phone on, just so. If not done correctly it would not charge, and even if it starts to charge with the green light illuminated, it doesn’t mean that it will stay charged. Probably the worst we have encountered. I gave up and resulted to the c charging ports instead, as they were at least fast and reliable.

Overall, the 2024 Mazda CX-90 is a well rounded vehicle offering something from everyone and a nice one for when you are making adult decisions.


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