Driving the SkyActiv-D Mazda 6 and CX-5 to Anilao, Batangas

Driving the SkyActiv-D Mazda 6 and CX-5 to Anilao, Batangas

Mazda Philippines has soared into new heights as they launched the SkyActiv technology last 2012. Since then, the company made positive strides in terms of the overall performance of its vehicles. Now, Mazda Ph is looking for another game changing move through the launch of its diesel-powered Mazda 6 and CX-5. Both of which include the brand’s acclaimed SkyActiv-D technology.

Aesthetically, the diesel-powered Mazda 6 and CX-5 looks similar to its current model. It also comes with Mazda’s current design language – Kodo Soul of Motion. Even its interior is a splitting image of the current version. The only difference that you can spot is the “D” badge placed at the rear of the vehicle.

However, the biggest difference lies under the hood. The diesel-powered Mazdas features the brand’s SkyActiv-D engine which is said to deliver the lowest compression ratio for a diesel engine at 14:1. This means that lower compression ratio enables the air and fuel to mix thoroughly, resulting to cleaner exhaust emission.  

The SkyActiv-D Mazda 6 and CX-5 are powered by a 2.2-liter turbocharged diesel engine that delivers 173 hp and a hefty 420 Nm of torque. Both vehicles are mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission.

So, how does the diesel-powered Mazdas perform on the road?

In order to gauge the performance of the SkyActiv-D Mazda 6 and CX-5, Mazda Ph invited select group of motoring journalists for a test drive to Anilao, Batangas.

The drive kicked off at Mazda’s dealership in Makati. We were assigned to hop on board the Mazda 6 first. After carving through the busy street of Pasong Tamo we were able to stretch the legs of the Mazda 6 along the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) and towards the Southern Tagalog Arterial Roadway (STAR).

On the highway, the SkyActiv-D Mazda 6 didn’t disappoint as it delivered responsive power and decent torque pull. The engine shifts smoothly and efficiently at around 2,000 rpm with relatively minimum lag, allowing you to overtake slower vehicles with good measure. Of note, the vehicle’s engine is refined and quiet as compared to conventional diesel power units. This gives you an impression that you are driving a gasoline powered car rather than a diesel.

Another thing that stood out during our drive was the 6’s well designed NVH (noise, vibration, and harshness) as road and tire noise are reduced to a minimum, giving you a comfortable driving experience. Fuel economy-wise, this diesel-powered Mazda 6 registered 15 km/l while running at an average speed of 90 km/h.

After the highway stretch, the group were asked to switch cars. For this leg, we were on board the CX-5. Similar to the Mazda 6, the CX-5’s diesel engine is refined and quiet. To put things in perspective, you can’t hear the engine’s clutter despite being a diesel. The only indication which can reveal that you’re looking at or driving a diesel-powered CX-5 is its tachometer and D badge. 

Performance-wise, this CX-5 delivered the goods as we made our up- and down-hill journey towards Gulugod Baboy. The power is there for this CX-5 but more importantly the vehicle doesn’t lack in torque, giving you confidence while driving through uphill roads. In terms of handling, the CX-5 is easy to tame due to its light steering feel which enabled us to traverse through the twisty and narrow mountain roads with ease.

As for the suspension, the CX-5 showed adaptability on different terrain; absorbing uneven road surface within reason. However, we do wish that the CX-5 has rear aircon vents to provide extra cooling power especially during this Summer season. In terms of fuel economy, the CX-5 yielded 10 km/l.

Overall, it’s safe to say that the SkyActiv-D Mazda 6 and CX-5 are on the forefront in terms of diesel engine technology. Aside from being refined and quiet, Mazda’s 2.2L turbocharged diesel engine is a power unit that combines performance, fuel efficiency, and clean emission. Indeed, the diesel-powered Mazdas could be considered as game changers.  

For more information about Mazda and its vehicles, visit the AutoDeal Car Guide.