Boasting plenty of features and a strong safety record, the 2007 Mazda CX-9 Grand Touring AWD also adds top-notch performance in tricky road situations. Though lacking low-range gearing for off-roading, the automatic AWD system features center and rear locking differentials and can distribute up to 50% of torque to the rear wheels. Since it's a Grand Touring, it also gets larger 20-inch alloy wheels with all-season tires. Power comes from a 24-valve, 3.5-liter DOHC V6 with variable valve timing. Paired with a 6-speed shiftable automatic, it puts out 263 hp and 249 lb-ft of torque, with a 3,500-pound tow rating. Its 18/24 mpg fuel economy disappoints.
Sporting a rear spoiler and dual exhaust, the 2007 CX-9 Grand Touring AWD also adds xenon HID lamps and foglights. Other upgrades include a universal remote with remote start, rain-sensing wipers, mirrors with turn signals, and memory settings for the driver's power seat and mirrors. The dressed-up interior now boasts wood, alloy, and leather trim, along with blue electroluminescent gauges. Power windows, locks, and heated mirrors, heated front power seats, leather upholstery, remote entry, wheel-mounted cruise and audio controls, front and rear climate control, and a CD/MP3 player are all standard. Convenience features include front and rear intermittent wipers, cupholders for all three rows, a front power outlet, tilt and telescopic steering, a tachometer, and an external temperature gauge.
The crossover seats seven in three rows, with 41 inches of front legroom and nearly 40 inches in the second row. Second and third rows split-fold flat (60/40 and 50/50) to expand the 17.2-cubic-foot cargo area to 47 or 100 cubic feet. The cargo bay comes with tiedowns and can be outfitted with a cargo cover and net. A power liftgate is optional. For more storage, a roof rack is available. Second-row seats recline and move back and forth for easier access. Five-star safety ratings include traction and stability control, dual front-side and side curtain airbags for all three rows, front and rear stabilizer bars, and 4-wheel disc and ABS brakes with electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist. Automatic headlights and a tire monitor are also standard. Options add a rearview camera and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. A navigation system, DVD player, 6-CD changer with satellite radio, and sunroof are also available.