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Compare 2019 Mazda CX-5 vs 2019 Toyota RAV4

The 2019 Mazda CX-5 is a compact crossover that features an outstanding turbocharged engine, well-tuned steering, and a comfortable cabin. Customers at the car dealerships in Las Vegas tell us they like the CX-5’s head-turning styling, too. And the CX-5 is one of the few vehicles in its class that’s actually fun to drive.

The Mazda CX-5 has a few competitors in the crowded compact crossover segment, including the 2019 Toyota RAV4. We’ll take a look at both models and discover which one is the best buy.

Engines

The Mazda CX-5 has two engines on offer. Its new 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine generates 250 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque with premium gasoline. The RAV4 only has one engine, a four-cylinder that only puts out 203 hp and 184 lb.-ft. of torque.

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Compare Price

Most of us are looking to save some money when we’re buying a new car. CX-5 buyers will pay less at a dealership like the Las Vegas area car dealers than those who choose the RAV4. The 2019 Mazda CX-5 has a Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) that starts at $24,350, while the RAV4 has a starting MSRP of $25,650. That’s a difference of $1,300, money that’s better left in your pocket. We should point out that the MSRP isn’t the actual dealer price. We use the figure here to compare these two SUVs.

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Compare Passenger Space

Both the 2019 Mazda CX-5 and the 2019 Toyota RAV4 seat five, but passengers in the CX-5 will be more comfortable. The CX-5 has a total passenger volume of 103.6 cu-ft, compared to just 98.9 cu-ft in the RAV4. Rear-seat passengers get 39.6 inches of legroom in the CX-5. The RAV4 only provides 37.8 inches of rear legroom.

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Exterior Styling

We recognize that Toyota has come a long way toward improving the look of the 2019 RAV4 and it surely has better styling than it’s Honda CR-V rival. But neither model comes close to the CX-5’s stunning exterior styling. We can say without reservation that not only is the 2019 Mazda CX-5 the most attractive compact crossover available today, it’s also the best-looking crossover, period, handily beating all rivals and even luxury crossovers.

Safety

Along with the Mazda CX-5, the Toyota RAV4 includes a wide array of safety gear. But when you look at the crash-test results of the two vehicles, you can see why the CX-5 is the safer of the two crossovers. Both vehicles received the highest rating of five stars from the NHTSA. But the CX-5 was selected as a 2019 Top Safety Pick+ model by the IIHS, the organization’s highest accolade. The Toyota RAV4 earned Good scores in all crash tests but failed to place as a Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+ model.

In the End

While the Toyota RAV4 is a popular model with buyers, it’s outclassed by the 2019 Mazda CX-5. The CX-5 is less expensive, has a more powerful engine option, is more spacious, is more attractive and has better crash-test scores than the RAV4. For these reasons, we declare the CX-5 the winner of this head-to-head competition.