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Got to try out the new CX-7 last night at Tustin Mazda. Mazda held a pre-release launch party and allowed VIP guests to check out and drive the car before it hits showrooms in the coming weeks. A product manager from Mazda HQ was onsite to answer questions and dinner was provided. Props to Tustin Mazda for holding an awesome event. No pix unfortunately. :(

We got to try out the fully loaded CX-7 GT with navi.

Impressions:
The car looks great inside and out. I do wish it had roof rails to give it a more balanced look. Something just looks off without one...almost naked. And they really need to drop the euro tails. Other than that the build and quality are excellent. Very clean and classy interior. The interior has more of a euro flair a la VW designs and you could easily mistaken the interior for a higher grade luxury car. I like the patterned cloth strip running down the middle of the seats. And the navi is pretty sweet. I've never tried a mazda navigation system and it's pretty good.

The Drive:
The turbo I4 has a lot of kick to it and torque is plentiful. It gets off quick but as usual, there's turbo lag and unfortunately it comes off a bit on the harsh/twitchy side. As a family hauler, you'd expect a smooth ride. and it is very smooth. But when you lightly tap the gas pedal, you expect to start to accelerate at a comfortable and progressive pace, but about 2 seconds later when you hit about 2000rpm, you get a sudden jerk as the turbo kicks in and launches you from say 15mph to 30 when u least wanted it to. With 4 ppl in the car, we all were like "whoa..." cause the transition was so unexpected that all our heads moved back and hit our headrests. Took some getting used to. Note, the turbo lag isn't 2 seconds... it's just the engine management system was a little on the dumb side in interpreting what i wanted to do at slower speeds. Otherwise, when i put my foot on the pedal, the thign really moves.

Steering was very precise and i like the heavy weighted feel. Feels more like my TSX i have and I liek that. Our Mazda3's steering feels too light in comparison for my tastes. Visibility is excellent and overall, it's a great car.
 

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Here is something I've been wondering about for a while: Are the taillights lit by LED's? It's hard to determine with the pictures out there.
 

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Anyone changing to a turbocharged vehicle should expect a period of time where you will relearn your driving technique. When you are wanting to just take off moderately, you ease into the gas. But when you don't feel the power that you expect from (for example) a V6 in a car this size, you naturally step into the gas...just at the instant that the turbo is spooling up. So you will quickly learn to start out with moderate gas pedal apply, then actually back off a bit. It will all be natural in no time.

I actually went the other way, coming from a Probe GT-turbo to the Mazda3. I've had to learn not to stomp on the gas since the response is instant, and can get too much wheel-spin when not wanted.
 

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Surprisingly, the CX-7 comes in at a rather heavy 3710 lbs for the FWD model and more for the AWD model. That's 850 lbs more lthan the Mazda 3. Too bad mileage is in the 19/24 mpg category. And it uses premium 91 octane gas. Ouch.
 

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If you can afford the vehicle, you should be able to keep it filled with premium otherwise your in trouble and should have looked elsewhere for a car
 

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[quote author=xavier link=topic=43832.msg863287#msg863287 date=1154628241]
If you can afford the vehicle, you should be able to keep it filled with premium otherwise your in trouble and should have looked elsewhere for a car
[/quote]
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Agree with you the car has a lot for its money. Nevertheless, I'm happy with my MZ3 hatch.
 

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the SUV is sexy and it seems from his review that it was just as fun to drive as the mazda3
 
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[quote author=Mr Rogers link=topic=43832.msg654541#msg654541 date=1144533108]
Here is something I've been wondering about for a while: Are the taillights lit by LED's? It's hard to determine with the pictures out there.
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Nope, the Taillights and Turn Signals are NOT LEDs although the TBL is LED.
The reflector in the taillight is multi-faceted which generates that look. BTW they DO look good, especially at night.
 

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Does this have the EXACT disi turbo that the Speed3 has?
Thanks :lol:
 

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Not detuned, slightly smaller turbo to get the engine to be more torquey.

Got a chance to drive one today, it's unbelievable. For an SUV it certainly does a great job of convincing you that you aren't. Great feel from the steering, pedals and for an automatic it does a great job of finding the right gear. Totally impressed with all of Mazda's non re-badged car lineup now.
 
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