Mazda CX-5 GTR/Signature or Toyota Rav4 Adventure/TRD

clarence2

New member
Living in Austin, TX, I've many highway miles to get to the gravel roads out West I hope to explore.

I'll likely be traveling by myself and hoteling it most nights, so little need for much cargo capacity.


The CX-5 is pretty entertaining on-road (250hp and 310tq, well-suspended), but quite limited off-road (little ground clearance, no skid plates).

The Rav4 is no better than boring on-road (205hp, 185tq), but with aftermarket lifted suspension and skid plates, much more capable off-road.

Weighted use argues for the CX-5, constraint theory for the Rav4.


I've a Mazda MX-5 for fun (track days and autocross) so I'm biased to the CX-5, but I've also friends who plan to full-time in something EarthRoamer-like and I'm unsure if the CX-5 is capable of keeping up with them.


Thoughts?
 

stevec

Adventurer
We have an AWD 2017 Mazda CX-5 GT. Bought it new and 64K miles later not a single problem. Wouldn't take it on anything worse than a FS road but if that is all you are looking to do, then it'll do just fine. I don't remember a 250hp option, so that must be a new thing.
 

LexusAllTerrain

Expedition Leader
We have an AWD 2017 Mazda CX-5 GT. Bought it new and 64K miles later not a single problem. Wouldn't take it on anything worse than a FS road but if that is all you are looking to do, then it'll do just fine. I don't remember a 250hp option, so that must be a new thing.
Yes 2.5L Turbo Charged Engine with Allwheel Drive!
 

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stevec

Adventurer
Nice! Ours is AWD but we only had one engine choice, a 2.3T I believe. It isn't bad but bogs down pretty quickly with a full load.
 

stevec

Adventurer
I'm not sure of your timeframe for purchasing, but have you checked into the new Bronco Sport? If they can come in below $30K like they claim, and have a real 4WD system, that could be a solid option.
 

clarence2

New member
That's a good question, but (fairly or not) I'm probably only interested in Japanese makes.

Looking to get into something pretty soon, I cannot wait for the refreshed Tacoma, 4Runner, or Land Cruiser (the latter two more than I need, anyway).

Just looking to be convinced either that I'll miss very little off-road going with the CX-5 or that I'll really regret it the first time I have to turn back from some interesting trail the (modified) Rav4 would have made.

Thanks.
 

clarence2

New member
Went with the CX-5 GTR.

I'll upgrade to A/T tires (wheels too) and see how it fares.

Thanks, everyone.
 
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calicamper

Expedition Leader
That's a good question, but (fairly or not) I'm probably only interested in Japanese makes.

Looking to get into something pretty soon, I cannot wait for the refreshed Tacoma, 4Runner, or Land Cruiser (the latter two more than I need, anyway).

Just looking to be convinced either that I'll miss very little off-road going with the CX-5 or that I'll really regret it the first time I have to turn back from some interesting trail the (modified) Rav4 would have made.

Thanks.
Reformed former Toyota and Subaru snob here. You need to look at Ford. Honestly.
I sold my Subaru and my Toyotas after 25yrs of Toyota and 19yrs Subaru I have a Ford Fusion Energi 2015 with 70,000 miles zero issues looks and drives like its brand new 65mpg life time average. I picked up a 2019 Expedition last September to replace my 07 Sequoia. Its been a great truck so far no issues.

The Bronco Sport will crush the current soft roader line up in practicality regarding gear space, off road capability yet still play in that CUV world.

The Mazda stuff is pretty decent great on road and cheap. The New RAV was badly needed and s huge improvement over the corrolla thing they called a RAV prior to this version, but the RAV bumper/air dam is a disaster for anything more than graded roads.

Basically what your asking for is exactly what Ford created in the Bronco Sport. You would be silly not to go look and do your homework on it.
 

clarence2

New member
Just rented a Platinum F-150 and still bothered by the style/fit/finish. Just really off-putting.

Maybe shouldn't weigh so heavily, but I have the like the thing.

If it doesn't work out, I'll replace with the next generation 4Runner or Land Cruiser in a couple years.
 

calicamper

Expedition Leader
The F150 is Designed with work gloves and boots types in mind. None of the CUV stuff is designed like a truck targeting construction use.
 

clarence2

New member
The Falken Wildpeak A/T Trail tires (235/55-19, 34#, XL load and V speed rated) in and awaiting the Rays Gram Lights 57DR (19X8.5, 21#) on order.

Looking to mount Lightforce HTX 2 driving lights behind the grill, debating the Thule Trail XT M roof top basket.
 

Grassland

Well-known member
Let's see some pics later.

When shopping for my wife we looked at CX5, RAV4 Adventure or Trail whatever we call it in Canada, and Grand Cherokee (yeah how the real 4x4 that's larger and heavier got in that running)
RAV4 interior with the orange plastic bits and trim on the seats was an instant no go for the Mrs. I personally liked the Lunar color with white roof and offering a brighter blue was nice. Everything now a days is six shades of grey and some other dark colours.
The Mazda interior we both liked and it drove nice, and with features she wanted it was priced too close to the GC and the salesperson was the worst.
 

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