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Subaru Forester vs. Mazda CX-5

Compare repair costs, reliability, and owner reviews

Subaru Forester

2016 Subaru Forester
$645
Annual Repair Cost
on average

Mazda CX-5

2016 Mazda CX-5
$484
Annual Repair Cost
on average

Overall Reliability Rating

Above Average

The Subaru Forester Reliability Rating is 4.0 out of 5.0, which ranks it 20th out of 26 for compact SUVs. The average annual repair cost is $645 which means it has average ownership costs. The frequency and severity of repairs are both fairly average when compared with all other vehicles.

Excellent

The Mazda CX-5 Reliability Rating is 4.5 out of 5.0, which ranks it 5th out of 26 for midsize SUVs. The average annual repair cost is $484 which means it has lower than average ownership costs. The severity of repairs is low while frequency of those issues is average, so major issues are uncommon for the CX-5.

Reliability Rating Breakdown

Cost
Average annual repairs total
$645
inexpensive
very expensive
$484
inexpensive
very expensive
Frequency
Average annual repair shop visits
0.5
not often
way too often
0.4
not often
way too often
Severity
Percentage of annual repairs that are urgent
10%
minor issues
major issues
8%
minor issues
major issues

Overall Car Ratings & Details

(26 Reviews)
(2 Reviews)
Rating Details
5 star
(3)
4 star
(20)
3 star
(3)
2 star
(0)
1 star
(0)

The Subaru Forester ranks highest in drive train and ranks lowest in body.

Read more detailed reviews here.

“Extremely practical, very roomy. Good at everything, bad at nothing. A/C could blow colder, and ride is a bit harsh, but I love this vehicle. The AWD is excellent. Superb gas milage. 30000 miles wi...”

Rating Details
5 star
(0)
4 star
(0)
3 star
(0)
2 star
(1)
1 star
(1)

The Mazda CX-5 ranks highest in exhaust and ranks lowest in heating.

Read more detailed reviews here.

“I researched and rented 8 different cars before deciding on this one. My first brand new car ever purchased. I'm disappointed that all materials read on this car were just fluff. My prior car was a...”

Vehicle Comparison Rundown

The Subaru Forester and the Mazda CX-5 are both compact, two-row SUVs. The Forester gives you all-wheel drive standard, while the front-wheel drive CX-5 offers all-wheel drive as an option. The Forester also provides more ground clearance (8.7 inches) than the CX-5 (7.6 inches).

In the power department, the Subaru Forester has a standard engine with 170 horsepower, plus an optional engine with 250 horsepower. The Mazda CX-5’s standard and only engine has 187 horsepower.

A comparison shows the benefits of the Forester’s boxy rear end design, resulting in 74.7 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded. The more stylish CX-5, with its sloping rear hatch, has just 59.6 cubic feet of space behind the front seats. 

One major advantage in the CX-5’s favor is in the area of driver involvement. The CX-5 gives you the kind of sporty and engaging handling that is rare among compact SUVs. The CX-5 is truly a pleasure to drive.

If your priorities are maximum cargo space and off-road ability, then the Subaru Forester is a good choice for you. But if you want to enjoy every mile of the journey as you sit behind the wheel, give the Mazda CX-5 a try.

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