Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles
Were you lucky enough to find one with the transmission oil cooler already installed? I understand that's mfr. required for towing above 2,000 pounds.
Yes, if you get AWD, you get the tow prep package as standard equipment which adds the transmission cooler, larger radiator fan, and reprogrammed ECU for towing up to 3500 lbs. The towing package which is not standard on any model adds a hitch and harness. I'm going to order the Curt hitch and 7-pin brake controller kit from eTrailer and pick up the 4-pin harness from Mazda to make installation easy. I also plan to upgrade the stereo with aftermarket amps and speakers so I specifically found one without Bose. I'm a bit of an audiophile snob and have a garage full of stereo parts to mix and match. I may add the factory NAV module too if I can get a good price on one from a salvage yard or something. Otherwise I'll stick with our garmin.
Originally Posted by MC1
Note: My neighbor has a CX9 and I had a chance to drive it. The ride was very nice. It goes go through a lot of gas quickly.
The only better option as far as gas mileage was the Escape
. Everything else with this towing capacity is right around 22 mpg or less highway. I was getting 22-24 mpg in my Mazdaspeed6 on premium gas so I shouldn't see a major shocker at the pump filling up the new ride.
The biggest adjustment for me is going from stick to automatic (or autotragic as I like to say). I wanted the niceties of a premium SUV and the only way I was going to keep stick was to settle for a true off road truck like a Wrangler/Xterra/FJ or spend more for a premium mark like the BMW X3. Its the one sacrifice I'm making and most likely my wife will drive this quite a bit so I can tool around in her 5 speed Focus to get my fill of rowing through gears.