A New Midsize SUV Aims To Move Mazda Upmarket

The all-new 2025 CX-70 Mazda two-row, midsize SUV offers seating flexibility, appealing exterior and interior design and three electrified power plants. This Flash Drive is from our having spent a few hours in the CX-70. Clean Fleet Report will follow-up with a deep-dive Road Test review, after being in the CX-70 for a week and driving several hundreds of miles. Until then, here is an overview of a new SUV designed to help move Mazda into the premium segment.

2025 Mazda CX-70
Mazda fills a gap in its SUV lineup

Propulsion Options

The 2025 Mazda CX-70 has three propulsion options and seven trim levels that can be mixed and matched with the engines.

2025 Mazda CX-70
The PHEV engine
  • Turbo: 3.3-liter inline 6-cylinder mild-hybrid engine, with 280 horsepower (hp) and 332 pound-feet (lb.-ft.) of torque. Fuel economy is EPA rated at 24 mpg city/28 highway/25 combined.
  • Turbo S: 3.3-liter inline 6-cylinder mild hybrid. This is the most powerful mass production gasoline engine offered by Mazda, putting out 340 hp and 369 lb.-ft. of torque when running on 91 octane. EPA rated at 23/28/25. The 48-volt mild-hybrid system with both 3.3L engines helps with efficiency and smooth acceleration from a standing start.
  • Both engines use a drive-by-wire 8-speed automatic transmission with driver selectable drive modes and a manual-shift mode. The rear wheel bias all-wheel drive system is standard on all CX-70 models.
  • Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV): 2.5-liter non-turbocharged inline-4 mated to a 100 kilowatt (kW) electric motor has a combined 323 hp and 369 lb.-ft. of torque. The rechargeable 17.8 kilowatt-hour battery helps this combination get 25 miles per gallon in hybrid mode and enables 26 miles of all-electric driving range. Both of these numbers are on the low side compared to competitive models, which is probably is something Mazda engineers are looking at improving.
2025 Mazda CX-70
Ready to plug in

Mazda supplies the charging cord, so by plugging into a common household outlet these are the charging times, going from discharged to a full charge.

  • 120V Level 1 – 11 hours
  • 240V Level 2 – 2.2 hours
  • 480V Level 3 – Not Available

The Level 1 charge rate will top-off the battery by plugging in it at bedtime, just like you do every night with a mobile phone. There is no mystery about how to stay away from gasoline stations for much of your in-town driving.

Design Cues

The CX-70 exterior, employing Mazda’s Kodo: Soul of Motion design theme, has a refined look with a restrained grille and attractive LED front and rear lighting. The design proportions, with short front and rear overhangs, include a smooth body without cladding, accents of piano black and black chrome along the lower doors, front and rear lower fascia, roof rails and a honeycomb grille.

2025 Mazda CX-70
Kodo at work, even when parked

The CX-70 comes in six exterior colors—Melting Copper Metallic, Poly Metal Gray Metallic, Rhodium White, Zircon Sand Metallic, Soul Red Crystal and Jet Black Mica, with all but the last having a premium price added.

The roomy interior seats five adults with the seats covered in leatherette or leather, lending a premium look and feel. The center console is wide and deep, and the rear seat passengers get manual retractable side window shades.

Eight inches of ground clearance enables a clear outlook on the road. Even with the power panoramic sunroof there is ample headroom for two six-footers up front and two or three adults in the second row.

The front seats are power adjustable with heat and ventilation. Rear passengers get a center armrest with cup holders, ventilation vents and heated seats. The hands-free power rear lift gate, with programmable height adjustment, opens to 50.1-inches of cargo space with the second row upright; with the rear 60:40 seat folded flat it offers 97.5-inches of space.


2025 Mazda CX-70
Plenty of screens

The long and low dash has a simple, clean, logical layout, with three information screens. The 12.3-inch digital cluster display has two easy-to-read round gauges with black faces and white letters framing a multi-information display for the odometer, average fuel economy and many other readings. The second screen is a configurable head-up display that shows speed, road speed limits and other important driving information.

Lastly, the 12.3-inch full-color center infotainment display has a screen for the audio, navigation, rear view camera and vehicle controls. The standard 8-speaker audio system is on the base Turbo Preferred trim, while all others get the 12-speaker Bose system. All have AM/FM HD/Pandora radio, SiriusXM and wireless Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The infotainment display is not a touchscreen unless using Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

The SMS text messages via audio delivery and reply is a convenience feature as is the AT&T 4G LTE Wi-Fi through Mazda Connect.

On Road Experience

Clean Fleet Report attended the CX-70 media launch program in Desert Hot Springs, California, where we stayed at the secluded “wellness escape” Two Bunch Palms that includes an Al Capone Suite because local lore says the infamous gangster bought the property as his Western hideout. A good story that adds some mystery to this oasis in the middle of the desert.

2025 Mazda CX-70
A favorite route

We drove both the Premium Plus trims of the CX-70 Turbo S and PHEV models. As can be imagined, the Turbo S was smooth and fast, doing exactly what a premium SUV should do. The ride was steady, the cornering sharp and the acceleration ready to get it on. My time with the Turbo S was on flat highways, so it will have to wait until I can get in this model later to test what it can do on mountain and country road twisties.

The CX-70 PHEV drive was a completely different opportunity; I requested it to tackle the challenging Palms To Pines Scenic Highway. Well-known to Southern California driving enthusiasts, the full route is 67 miles, but we only drove about 40 or so miles to test the CX-70’s climbing, braking, acceleration and, of course, handling.

Our journey began on Highway 74 in Palm Desert at 200’ elevation and wound to 4,518’ as we passed the quaint berg of Mountain Center with a population of 63. The destination for most people is the alpine village of Idyllwild, where visitors go in the summer to beat the scorching desert heat, and in the winter it caters to snow enthusiasts.

The CX-70 comes standard with i-Active AWD and Intelligent Drive Select, which Mazda calls Mi-Drive, allowing the driver to select drive modes—Normal, Sport, Off-Road and Tow. The smooth-shifting 8-speed automatic transmission instantaneously uses driving data, based on the selected drive mode, to deliver the best traction in all conditions. It also has paddle shifters for more manual control.

2025 Mazda CX-70
Off the chart numbers (down hill)

In my experience it was easy going, confidently taking most corners faster than the posted speed limit. The CX-70 PHEV is a joy to drive in these conditions, especially when using the brake regeneration to smoothly negotiate corners without chomping on the brake pedal. Descending nearly two miles with the CX-70 PHEV automatically defaulting to elect mode, the touch screen showed a read-out of 99.9 mpg (its default max) and an average energy efficiency of 3.5 miles per kW. Sunroof and windows open was the perfect way to, in my case, go from Pines To Palms.


The CX-70 comes with i-Activesense that offers an extensive list of standard and optional safety features, including front, side and air curtain airbags, four-wheel power disc ABS braking system, dynamic stability control, traction control, adaptive cruise control, rear view camera, tire pressure monitoring system, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning and lane keep assist, rear cross traffic alert, rear parking sensors, and an anti-theft alarm and engine immobilizer.


The Mazda 2025 CX-70 comes in three models and seven trim levels. These prices include the mandatory $1,455 destination and handling fee.

2025 Mazda CX-70
A red soul

3.3 Turbo

  • Preferred                        $41,910
  • Premium                         $47,355
  • Premium Plus                 $50,355

3.3 Turbo S

  • Premium                         $53,905
  • Premium Plus                 $57,405


  • Premium                         $55,855
  • Premium Plus                 $58,905

Observations: 2025 Mazda CX-70

Mazda introduced three new electrified power plants on its flagship 2024 CX-90 three-row SUV when it was launched in 2023. The two mild hybrid engines are notable, but not nearly as brand-shifting as the plug-in hybrid. As well, over the past several years Mazda has been pushing the brand towards a more premium position, moving it up a bit in vehicle qualities as well as the customer experience at the dealer.

2025 Mazda CX-70
Heading uptown

What we have seen is Mazda consistently makes the best-handling cars and SUVs that are not marketed as sport models. This comes from the brand’s halo car, the MX-5 Miata having a long reputation for its handling and performance with Mazda being high-level competitor in sports car racing.

2025 Mazda CX-70
Moving upscale, still a Mazda

In our short time driving the 2025 Mazda CX-70 Turbo S and PHEV, we were impressed. The build quality meets the premium positioning for the brand, and the handling was true to Mazda’s former branding slogan of “Zoom Zoom.” The performance was right where the company wants it to be with the Turbo S, and the PHEV gives consumers the option of all-electric driving. Visit your local Mazda dealer to see how the 2025 CX-70 fits your driving lifestyle.

Mazda didn’t benchmark the CX-70 against these competitors, but they told us the Lexus RX, BMW X5 and Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe will be crossed-shopped with the CX-70. It may be a stretch, but then again maybe not as a fully optioned CX-70 Premium Plus PHEV, with the optional $450 paint charge, will not cost much less than a comparable model than some of the models on that list. Clean Fleet Report always enjoys our time driving a Mazda, which is exactly what Mazda needs to do—get consumers to drive one, at which point they will learn what we have over the years—that Mazda makes great driving cars.

Make sure to opt-in to the Clean Fleet Report newsletter (top right of page) to be notified of all new stories and vehicle reviews, including our future Road Test of the CX-70.

Story and photos by John Faulkner.

[See image gallery at cleanfleetreport.com]The post Flash Drive: 2025 Mazda CX-70 first appeared on Clean Fleet Report.

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