Mazda CX-4 (2017)

Mazda CX-4

The Mazda CX-4 further evolves Mazda's KODO design language, which focuses on expressing the power and vitality of a wild animal, while shaving away all but the essential design elements to produce a look of dignity and elegance. The exterior design is one that will turn heads, even on crowded city streets. It exudes an air of irresistible charm that fills the viewer with a desire to own and drive one. Once sitting in the driver's seat, all five senses immediately register the modern feel and rich feature set of the interior design. It aims to deliver Mazda's unique driving pleasure and a fresh sense of vitality to daily life. Overall, it represents a new level of car design inspired by thinking that goes beyond conventional notions of the class.

An advanced exterior design that expresses traction and speed

With "striking traction form" as its theme, the exterior design creates an expression of the car's inherent energy transforming into drive power, which is in turn transferred in sure and powerful fashion from the center of the body and accelerates out toward the tires.

Starting with the unique proportions of its large diameter tires and flowing profile of its compact cabin, the Mazda CX-4 achieves a form that conveys the powerful stance of having all four wheels firmly gripping the road and a low center of gravity, all while maintaining ample ground clearance. Body surfaces that express volume and flowing motion without relying on character lines create the appearance of fender highlights that flow towards the center of the tires. The end result is a look of great stability and powerful forward momentum that gives birth to a radical new look, including the sleek cabin that reminds the viewer of a sporty, stylish coupe.

Uncompromising effort was dedicated to crafting everything from the Signature Wing that runs from the front grille to the headlamps, the roof rails and aluminum wheels, to the smallest parts throughout. Each part has the lustrous look of machined metal and is highly detailed.

Front view

A trapezoidal shape with the tires positioned in the four corners as widely as possible gives the Mazda CX-4 a bold and firmly planted stance on the road. This combines with the chromed front signature wing that identifies the Mazda brand and the courageous gaze of the headlamps to create a front face with an expression of vitality and advanced design.

The signature wing runs along the upper edge of each headlamp, giving them the look of an untamed animal's eyes. The lighting signature uses thick guiding lenses that create crystal-like illumination and express vitality. Independent turn lamps positioned in the lower section of the bumper feature a clean, simple design. These elements combine to establish a distinctive presence that, day or night, is recognizable at a glance as that of the Mazda brand, and that heightens the impression of quality that is unique to the CX-4.

Side view

The Mazda CX-4's design aims to achieve striking proportions of an exotic coupe. It realizes an ideal physique that concentrates design tension between the front and rear wheels, all while minimizing the volume of the overhangs. The contrast between the sharp nose and hood design that suggests speed emphasizes the "traction form" message that originates with the fender design. The design of the front and rear bumpers also makes the overhang at the ends look lighter, giving the side view a tighter appearance and realizing a sense of lightness when viewed from the rear quarter.

The A-, B- and C-pillars are all blacked out, creating the appearance of a clean, continuous glass area that surrounds the cabin and gives it a tight appearance resembling that of a sleek, taut capsule. The rear quarter window features a lustrous molding that emphasizes the coupe-like profile. Introducing a new design for Mazda, the roof rails run flat along the roof to heighten the sensation that they are integrated into the cabin structure. Made of solid aluminum, they add a stylish touch of quality to the look of the exterior. Black cladding added to the lower part of the body expresses the CX-4's identity as an active crossover SUV that can be enjoyed in or out of town.

Rear view

The cabin tapers toward its rear and blends with the flare of the rear fenders to form a trapezoidal shape that expands outward toward the bottom to emphasize the ground-gripping stance of the tires. The design achieves the sharply angled rear window that tapers inward toward the bottom and wide shoulders that are symbolic of a premium coupe. To properly embody the beautiful flow from the sides of the roof to the rear that gives coupes their appeal, veteran clay modelers carefully repeated a series of surface adjustments in increments of tenths of a millimeter at a time as they toiled to create a form that is beautiful when viewed from any angle.

The rear corners are shaved as much as possible to minimize the volume of the rear overhang. This combines with the blacked out lower bumper design to make the rear overhang look even tighter.

The rear combination lamps adopt the same sleek design as the headlamps, and the Mazda CX-4 introduces a radical new design that has the rear signature wing running right across the upper part of the lid lamps. The rear fog lamps that create the impression of strong ground-gripping stance with their trapezoid bezels use a lens cut with a fine pitch to reflect light in a complex fashion. It realizes lighting with a detailed three-dimensional appearance and features a transparent finish reminiscent of crystal.


The CX-4 offers a choice of 19-inch or 17-inch aluminum wheels. Spokes extend from the center to the rims in dynamic fashion. Their three-dimensional design and advanced looking surface finish create an exterior appearance that befits this whole new genre of car.

The large diameter 19-inch wheels create a sporty and tough, yet sophisticated look that suits a crossover SUV. A newly developed light gunmetal gray paint applied to the twisted face of the spokes and machining where they are joined to the rim give the wheels a quality look of solid metal. The 17-inch wheels feature a side view reminiscent of an elegant coupe. The spokes dip in deeply near the center of the wheel create three-dimensional depth and surface that catches light and shadow in a way that leaves a strong impression that belies their smaller size.

An interior design with true quality that will appeal to all five senses

The interior design aims to deliver a rich, modern environment that will create a solid bond between the driver and car throughout the various scenes the customer experiences in daily life. A unique atmosphere greets the customer the instant they open the door. Attention to the shape, material and feeling of every detail is aimed at creating forms that speak of high quality and elegance. The result is a relaxing cabin environment with a pleasing sense of tension that brings a burst of energy to the driver's spirit.

The interior environment is divided into a cockpit zone that wraps snugly around the driver to create an intimate bond with the car and a passenger zone that delivers a feeling of openness and relaxation. The cockpit zone employs Mazda's intelligent Human-Machine Interface (HMI) that enables the driver to concentrate on the road ahead at all times, and makes driving safer and more fun. Peaking at the meter hood, the cockpit wraps snugly around the driver with all major controls laid out in perfect symmetry to keep the driver's body straight and centered while driving. This helps the driver feel physically at one with the car. On the passenger side, the shape of the decorative panel and upper section of the instrument panel were carefully designed to spread out horizontally and express a feeling of breadth. This instills a sense of stability and reassurance that also gives the passenger a feeling of openness with a clear view out the windshield. On the whole, carefully selected materials and manufacturing processes for the interior provide occupants with a level of true quality that appeals to all five senses.

Instrument panel

With gentle transitions in its surface shapes, the instrument panel emphasizes the rich nature of the interior design, while the advanced look of the combination decorative panel and newly developed Deep Red color of the upper section contribute to the elegant charm and innovative image of the CX-4. In addition, flat wiper blades positioned where they are out of view realize a clean cowl line.

The combination decorative panel that extends from the center air-conditioning louvers toward the passenger zone uses real aluminum. Depending on the grade, the panel is finished with a satin sycamore wood grain, aluminum hairline, or glossy piano black paint treatment. This combination of materials realizes a design with a rich expression that changes continually and never gets boring. Fine craftsmanship dedicated to the final fit and finish gives birth to a highly detailed three-dimensional expression with a quality look and feel that surpasses the class. Contrasting with the horizontal orientation of this combination decorative panel is vertically oriented satin silver ornamentation that runs up each side of the center stack where the functional parts are concentrated. The strong presence of a vertical vector here expresses the rugged strength of a crossover SUV.

Floor console

The adoption of an Electrical Parking Brake (EPB) contributes to the floor console's clean, flowing design. The shifter knob, commander control, and EPB switch are laid out on the top where the driver can operate them with natural movements. A shutter-style lid covers a pair of large cup holders. Closing the lid creates a flat surface that extends from the controls to the rear section of the armrest. At the rear, the console is tucked inward below the air-conditioning louvers to increase the amount of space available for the rear seat occupants' feet, making it easier to move and providing greater comfort.


A line that runs in an arc from the instrument panel, across the upper part of the door trim and downward suggests sharp acceleration. This line combines with the bright metallic finish of the inner door handle and decorative panel to reflect the Mazda CX-4's sharp, cool expression of its unique modern feel. In contrast, subtle variations in the surface shape of the door trim's upper section where it picks up light work in concert with the design expression of the exterior surfaces to create a look of gently flowing motion. In both its look and feel, the design also aims to deliver a sense of richness and softness to the touch wherever the occupant's body makes contact. This includes the surfaces of the armrests and the fabrics used on the trim.


The smooth expression and richness of the light and shadow play produced by the overall interior design is complemented by the look of high quality and relaxing comfort achieved by the seat design. The seats for the CX-4 deliver a sense of speed, while also being shaped to wrap snugly around the occupant's body. It's a design that suits the CX-4's combination of SUV and coupe characteristics.

The leather seats incorporate a vertical double pleat design and bold stitching in the center section that are reminiscent of a vintage car. It creates an atmosphere of authenticity that takes advantage of the expression delivered by the use of leather, while at the same time suppressing the sticky feeling that typically comes with the occupants' bodies making contact with leather. The seats also adopt a different color for the side bolsters and parts around the shoulder area to heighten the three-dimensional look of the shape. The result is a radical new design that provides a sense of speed and comfort.

Color design

The lineup of exterior and interior colors prepared for the Mazda CX-4 supports its value proposition by instilling the customer with a sense of vitality whenever they touch it, and by changing their mood the minute they climb in and take a seat behind the wheel. Red is a color with special significance to Chinese customers, and the CX-4 adopts the color as part of its lineup of advanced and sophisticated color combinations.

Body colors

The lineup of seven colors available for the Mazda CX-4 aims to highlight its advanced styling. Focusing on Soul Red Metallic and Radiant Ebony as the variations of red theme colors, the lineup also includes the four chic monotone colors Ceramic Metallic, Sonic Silver Metallic, Crystal White Pearl Mica, and Jet Black Mica, as well as the fashionable Blue Reflex Mica color.

Interior colors

There are four choices of coordinated interior colors available. These include Pure White with black, Deep Red with black, Sand Beige with black, and black monotone. The newly developed Deep Red color is a brand new interior color with a calm and rich look, and a sophisticated tone that never gets boring, even after years of use. Regardless which combination the customer chooses, the inside of the pillars and ceiling use black material.

Carefully selected functions and optimized packaging

The CX-4's unique proportions, which feature ample ground clearance combined with low overall vehicle height, realize appealing styling and self-assured capability on any type of road. At the same time, it represents packaging that provides these features without compromising any of the functions that customers truly need. The development team performed a thorough and detailed analysis of all the body movements related to opening the door, entering the vehicle, driving and exiting the vehicle, as well as related actions such as stowing and removing luggage, or placing personal items in compartments. The results are reflected in the structures and shapes of each of the car's parts, which are all designed to operate without causing any discomfort, unpleasantness or inconvenience. In addition, the designs for the driver's field of vision, driving posture and instrumentation all use the latest iteration of Mazda's ergonomic Human-Machine Interface (HMI). The aim is to support the driver in feeling reassured as he or she heads off to explore new worlds with a light touch of the foot.

Sleek proportions never seen before

Although it sports the same 2,700mm wheelbase as the CX-5 and minimum ground clearance of 196mm, the CX-4 achieves a lower profile at an overall height of 1,530mm (vehicles with the SKYACTIV-G 2.0 engine and SKYACTIV-DRIVE). The sleek proportions that achieve a lower roof height in relation to the amount of ground clearance combine with the short length of the roof and sharply slanted angle of the rear window to give birth to radical new crossover SUV styling that compares to the dauntless image of a coupe. The ample ground clearance and large diameter 225/55R19 or 225/65R17 tires retain the functionality of an SUV, while a low center of gravity provides a reassuring driving experience.

An easy to use cabin environment that makes driving more fun

The Mazda CX-4 cabin was developed to make daily use easy and driving more fun in a manner that is tangible to the customer. Even though the vehicle height is low, the front seats provide plenty of headroom for even a large driver. There is also a wide range of seat adjustment available to help ensure a comfortable driving position. The rear seats also secure plenty of room to provide a comfortable environment.

Cabin entry and exit that requires less effort

Repeated testing with digital human models of various builds led to the development of front and rear seat hip point height zones that alleviate the burden of entering and exiting the cabin for drivers of all sizes. In addition, thorough analysis of factors that affect ease of upper body movement, including the height of the door opening and height of the roof side, are reflected in the body design. As a result, the development team realized a design that makes it easier for drivers of all sizes to enter and exit the cabin, despite the CX-4's relatively high ground clearance and low overall height. The structure of the garnish on the inner side of the cladding was also optimized to enable smooth entry and exit.

A cockpit that strengthens the bond between driver and car

The CX-4 cockpit provides an environment in which any driver can concentrate on the road ahead while communicating with the car and enjoying the Jinba-ittai driving experience.

Optimized driving position

The Mazda CX-4 front seats allow for fore-aft slide and upward or downward height adjustment, while the steering wheel offers tilt and telescopic adjustment.

The shift knob is designed to be easy to operate smoothly with just the right amount of force, and it is positioned on top of the floor console where the hand can move easily between it and the steering wheel. The EPB button and commander control sit behind the shift knob where they offer intuitive operation.

The pedals are positioned where the driver can extend their leg and reach them naturally, thereby achieving greater safety and ease of operation. Use of a hinged organ type accelerator pedal helps enable finer, quicker pedal control and smooth foot transfer to the brake pedal.

Clear visibility for a stress-free experience

The CX-4 achieves its radical styling and excellent visibility in a manner that enables the driver to quickly and precisely determine conditions around the car without changing his or her driving posture.

When turning right at an intersection, the rearward placement of the A-pillars expands the field of vision through the large windshield and small outer mirrors mounted on the doors provide clearer visibility out the front and toward the corners. The shape of the mirrors was also optimized to realize a better view toward the rear. While delivering a taut rear design similar to that of a coupe, the design of the rear window allows the driver to easily check for approaching vehicles when changing lanes and provides a clear view out the back when backing into a parking spot.

Front seat design that makes driving more fun and less tiring

A suspension mat used on the seatback combines with a design that wraps around the occupant's body for excellent fit that positively holds the body and creates a sense of being one with the car. The seat firmly supports the hips to prevent changes in posture when driving and provides well-balanced support from the shoulders down to the lumbar region, reducing the load on the body and muscles.

Mazda's human-centric HMI places top priority on driving safety

Mazda's new-generation HMI prioritizes safety above all else. In particular, the cockpit design is based on the Heads-up Cockpit concept, which aims to help drivers process large amounts of information while maintaining the correct driving position and concentrating on driving safely. It is designed to be simple and easy to use, while at the same time minimizing cognitive, visual and manual distractions. The cockpit is divided into two zones, one for information that is necessary for the safe operation of the vehicle, and the other for communication-related information. Information the driver requires and the devices for controlling its display are optimally positioned.

The driving information zone is home to the meters, and also the Active Driving Display, which projects information as a virtual image on the combiner mounted vertically atop the meter hood. Vehicle speed and other important driving information that changes by the moment are displayed in real time where the driver can quickly confirm it and take any necessary action. The communication zone includes an independent seven-inch center display mounted at the top of the dashboard that displays information from the MZD Connect car connectivity system, as well as the commander control mounted on top of the floor console, which the driver can operate by touch alone without taking their eyes off the road.

Mazda's advanced MZD Connect car connectivity system

This car connectivity system makes it easier to take advantage of services that today's customers consider essential, including internet connectivity and access to social networking, even when in transit. Customers can connect their iOS or Android devices to MZD Connect via Bluetooth®, Wi-Fi, or USB and use them to access a variety of web content. A menu of the various available functions is displayed on the seven-inch center display, and the customer accesses these by operating the commander control on the floor console, or by using voice commands.

Audio functions

The audio system is capable of receiving terrestrial AM/FM broadcasts and also supports audio playback from CDs, the customer's mobile audio players, and playback via Bluetooth®. In addition, when connected via Wi-Fi, they can also use QQ Music or other popular Chinese music apps.

Communication functions

In addition to providing hands-free telephone operation and access to one's contact list, the system can also receive short text messages and display a list of sender IDs. When the car is in motion, the text-to-voice function can read the contents of email aloud. In addition, it is possible to reply to the sender by choosing from a selection of preset messages. The customer can also access Weibo, reading contents when stopped, or having messages read aloud when driving.

News and weather report functions

When connected to a smartphone via Bluetooth®, individual categories of news can be displayed and read aloud. The system can also display the weather forecast for the user's current location as well as for the target destination set in the navigation system. In China, where customers are particularly concerned about PM2.5 levels, air pollution figures can also be displayed.

Navigation functions

When using MZD Connect's own navigation system, data from SD cards can display the current location on a map, or display available routes to a target destination. When a smartphone is connected, the customer can search the Internet for information such as restaurants or parking spots near their target destination. When the car is running low on gasoline, the system can automatically display information on nearby gas stations and the current price of gasoline. When approaching the entrance to a highway or elevated highway, the system automatically displays traffic information. It uses navigations software for this that bases its routing recommendations on current traffic information.


The connectivity system enables the use of a number of Mazda's own apps. Eco Display lets drivers confirm how eco-friendly their driving style is for each outing. Maintenance allows drivers to check when their next oil change is due. Warning Guidance lets drivers use the seven-inch center display to check a variety of warnings that appear on the meters.

Small item storage space that's easy for all to use

Storage space within the cabin is optimally designed to make it easy for occupants in both the front and rear seats to stow small items in a convenient space near them. Storage compartments in the front include a sunglasses holder, a ticket holder and the glove box, as well as a front console box at the front end of the console that makes it easy to stow a smartphone, keys, a wallet and other items the driver may carry regularly. The top of the floor console houses a pair of cup holders with an adjuster that can accommodate anything from a thin beverage can to a water bottle measuring 80mm in diameter. At the rear of the console is a tray and a storage box with a power outlet inside. When the shutter-style lid of the box is closed, it can be used as an armrest. Front and rear door pockets can hold a collapsible umbrella and maps, as well as a one-liter plastic bottle in the integrated bottle holder. Rear seat storage includes seatback pockets on the back of the driver's and passenger seats, as well as a pair of cup holders in the armrest between the seats.

Smart luggage space that features flexibility

The Mazda CX-4 design achieves tight rear styling, while also providing ample luggage space that can be freely used in different ways to suit the customer's intentions.

Cargo area capacity

The Mazda CX-4 features a cargo area that measures 1,054mm long, 500mm tall, and 1,020mm wide at the liftgate for a capacity of 400L (DIN) when the rear seats are being used. These dimensions make it easy to use. The shape of the liftgate opening was also carefully designed to realize a stylish exterior appearance combined with excellent loading and unloading characteristics. Proving itself practical and versatile, the cargo area can accommodate a pair of nine-inch golf bags or three carry-on bags. Folding down the 6:4 split folding rear seatbacks also makes it possible to stow longer items; and, with both rear seats folded down, the total storage capacity expands to a roomy 1,228L (DIN).

Smart and easy to use

A flat floor free of protrusions provides ease of loading and visual spaciousness. A folding package tray is also included. It can be removed as required, allowing the entire space to be used. There is also a removable storage box that fits below the floor and another box is included on the wall near the liftgate. The rear seats can be folded from the liftgate, making it easy to change the configuration to match the number of passengers or the needs of the moment.

Liftgate operation

The liftgate is designed to provide smooth, stress-free operation in various daily-use scenes. Thorough examination of the damper layout delivered a liftgate that is easy to open or close, without sacrificing the radical styling or the wide, easy-to-use cargo area opening. The design realizes a liftgate with a natural motion and aided by the support of the stay dampers so it can be opened or closed without requiring a lot of force.

A combination of light yet robust dynamic performance

The Mazda CX-4 takes the pleasure of Mazda's Jinba-ittai driving experience, which delivers faithful response to the driver's will to create a feeling of oneness between driver and car, and further evolves it to better suit a crossover SUV. The CX-4 fully adopts SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY and is fully tuned to match the driver's senses. The result is performance that provides true driving pleasure, from its light handling and controllability that faithfully responds to the driver's actions and smooth and comfortable ride characteristics, to its reassuring straight-line stability at highway speeds. In addition, Mazda's new-generation i-ACTIV AWD all-wheel drive system enhances the rough-road performance. The CX-4 combines the light handling of a sports car with the robust performance of an SUV, all while delivering excellent fuel economy.

SKYACTIV powertrains

Mazda's SKYACTIV-G direct-injection gasoline engine employs a variety of innovative technologies to achieve a high compression ratio of 13.0:1. This includes a 4-2-1 exhaust system that lengthens the exhaust path to suppress knocking, multi-hole injectors that form a homogenous fuel-air mixture and improve combustion, cavity pistons that reduces cooling loss by realizing a high thermal conversion ratio and variable valve timing that optimizes intake and exhaust valve operation. The result is a combination of both excellent driving and environmental performance. Two types of SKYACTIV-G engine are available for the Mazda CX-4. The SKYACTIV-G 2.0 engine achieves fine balance between excellent fuel economy and linear response characteristics that deliver the driving pleasure of a quality ride. The SKYACTIV-G 2.5 engine takes advantage of its greater torque to provide an even more robust driving experience with more powerful acceleration.

They are paired with Mazda's high-performance six-speed automatic SKYACTIV-DRIVE transmission. Mazda's six-speed manual SKYACTIV-MT transmission is also available for the SKYACTIV-G 2.0 engine. The SKYACTIV-G 2.5 engine adopts Mazda's i-ACTIV AWD all-wheel drive system, further heightening the all-road capability. Helping realize excellent fuel economy, all configurations are equipped with Mazda's i-stop idling stop system, while AWD SKYACTIV-G 2.5 vehicles also offers Mazda's own i-ELOOP brake energy regeneration system.


The SKYACTIV-G 2.0 is a 1,998cc DOHC 16-valve inline four-cylinder direct-injection gasoline engine. It produces plenty of torque from low rpm and provides acceleration characteristics that match the senses of the driver in scenes calling for repeated acceleration and deceleration. The result is a quality ride with linear characteristics that respond faithfully to the driver's intentions and realize true driving pleasure. At the same time, its practical and easy-to-use nature also places less of a burden on the environment.


The SKYACTIV-G 2.5 is a 2,488cc DOHC 16-valve inline four-cylinder direct-injection gasoline engine. Taking advantage of its added torque, the engine features output and acceleration characteristics that realize smooth power delivery and good response right through to the high rpm range, while the adoption of a balance shaft makes the ride quieter and rounds out the more powerful acceleration of the robust SKYACTIV-G 2.5 driving experience.


SKYACTIV-DRIVE is a high-efficiency six-speed automatic transmission that achieves a fine balance between a direct shift feel similar to that of a manual transmission, smooth gear changes, and good fuel economy. It also features a low-speed gear and shift control scheme that realizes ease of use when driving at low to mid-range speeds in the city.


The SKYACTIV-MT transmission available with the SKYACTIV-G 2.0 engine is a lightweight, compact six-speed manual transmission. It delivers a sporty and responsive shift feel, while also contributing to fuel economy. Its short shift stroke setting provides a crisp feel that enables the driver to change gears with a simple flick of the wrist.


i-ACTIV AWD employs an active torque control coupling that offers active on-demand control over torque distribution to the front and rear wheels. The concept is to provide the necessary amount of drive power to each wheel at the necessary moment, and thereby minimize energy loss. In particular, the system constantly monitors how well the wheels are gripping the road and optimizes torque distribution to prevent front wheel slip. It determines the driver's intentions without requiring a FWD/AWD selection switch, and constantly delivers optimal distribution of drive power to demonstrate outstanding performance, even on extremely slippery surfaces and rough roads.


Mazda's i-ELOOP is a brake energy regeneration system that converts the kinetic energy generated during deceleration into electricity that can be used again. The system uses a variable voltage alternator with output voltage from 12V to 25V, an Electric Double Layer Capacitor (EDLC) capable of instantly storing large amounts of electricity and efficiently supplying that power for later use, along with a DC-DC converter that delivers the appropriate output to each of the vehicle's respective electrical equipment and systems. Adopting the large-capacity EDLC enables the system to provide the electricity needed to run the car's electrical equipment, including the headlamps, air-conditioning and audio systems. This reduces the load on the engine, which contributes to conserving fuel.

Fuel economy and performance that contribute to realizing Sustainable Zoom-Zoom

In addition to taking full advantage of SKYACTIV TECHNOLOGY, the CX-4 also makes improvements to aerodynamic performances and reductions in drive resistance to strike the right balance between drive performance and excellent fuel economy. It also employs a dedicated gear ratio matched to driving conditions that require a lot of acceleration and deceleration. It provides optimal engine control and reduces gasoline consumption in everyday driving scenes, while also delivering good response and a satisfying feeling of performance.

High-performance, lightweight SKYACTIV-CHASSIS

The SKYACTIV-CHASSIS for the Mazda CX-4 aims to realize a fine balance between the driving pleasure of faithful response to the driver's will and excellent ride comfort. It benefits from all the knowledge acquired in developing Mazda's new-generation product lineup to deliver light handling reminiscent of a sports car and rough-road performance of an SUV.

A suspension system that features linear vehicle response

The suspension system for the CX-4 uses MacPherson struts in the front and a multi-link suspension system in the rear. While based on the highly rigid, lightweight suspension used on the CX-5, the geometry was redesigned and the relationship between the travel axis of the font dampers and springs was optimized. This results in a smoother moving suspension that provides an even more comfortable ride. Tuning the suspension to respond in linear fashion the instant the driver begins turning the steering wheel helps improve controllability.

Highly responsive steering system provides reassuring operation

The electric power assist steering incorporates an electromechanical integrated motor and the weight of the system has been reduced to provide the driver with accurate feedback from the vehicle. The steering gear ratio setting is significantly quick. The amount of assist adjusts to match even subtle changes in the vehicle speed, steering angle, and speed of steering wheel operation. By making the feeling of steering match the movement of the car, it feels pleasingly light at low speeds and reassuringly firm at highway speeds, while also responding nimbly to traffic conditions by enabling quick lane changes.

Brake system

The brake system employs ventilated discs in the front and solid discs in the rear, and the feeling of the brakes was tuned to match the Mazda CX-4's characteristics. Mazda tuned the booster's characteristics to provide the amount of stopping power the driver expects when pressing the brake pedal with a given amount of force or to a specific level. As a result, the brakes respond better when first pressing the pedal and provide greater control when backing the foot off the pedal.

First implementation of an auto-hold function

The Mazda CX-4 is the first Mazda that adopts an auto-hold function. It retains braking pressure to prevent the car from moving when the foot is removed from the brake pedal after coming to a complete stop. With the automatic transmission, the brakes are released once the driver presses the accelerator pedal; and with the manual transmission, they are released when the driver puts the car in gear and operates the clutch and accelerator to engage enough drive power to move the car.

The driver can turn the system on or off by pressing the AUTO HOLD switch on top of the floor console. Auto-hold is automatically turned off when the CX-4's ignition is turned off and then on again. Previous iterations of Mazda's i-stop idling stop system required the driver to continue pressing the brake pedal to keep the function operating on cars with an automatic transmission. Auto-hold changes this by allowing the driver to remove his or her foot from the brake pedal once i-stop has been engaged. The car won't move until the accelerator pedal is pressed and the engine restarted. This contributes to greater convenience and comfort, as well as better fuel economy.

Lightweight, high-rigidity SKYACTIV-BODY

The CX-4 adopts Mazda's SKYACTIV-BODY, which achieves high levels of performance in three seemingly contradictory areas: rigidity, light body weight, and collision safety. It takes the benefits of the SKYACTIV-BODY architecture developed in previous models, including the use of straight beams and continuous framework as well as the optimized closed sections and cross-section shapes, and optimizes the body for use on a crossover SUV. CAE analysis was fully implemented in running repeated tests to determine the optimum locations for and thickness of reinforcements in order to realize a high-rigidity body without increasing its weight. This made it possible to realize linear response to steering actions and handling that responds just the way the driver expects. This heightens the feeling of oneness between driver and car.

Body rigidity that contributes to performance

Development not only aimed to give the driver a tangible sense of rigidity, but also to achieve a supple body matched to the performance characteristics of the Mazda CX-4. This began by adopting a ring structure for the liftgate opening to achieve a stylish design and secure ample cargo area capacity, while also ensuring a high level of rigidity. The joints at the rear end corners were then designed to have a closed section structure that is capable of carrying the load born by the corners of the liftgate opening. In addition, high-rigidity blown material is used where the floor and damper supports are joined, creating a synergistic effect between the suspension and high-rigidity body. This makes it possible to effectively dampen even minute input from the road surface and suppress unpleasant vibration that would otherwise reach the cabin. These measures realize handling that responds faithfully to the driver's will, allowing quick lane changes where the CX-4 follows the line the driver is aiming for in pleasing fashion.

Excellent NVH performance that delivers a quality driving experience

Development aimed at realizing a quiet ride followed the "path-blocking and concentrated sound absorption" concept employed on other models in Mazda's new-generation product lineup in order to provide a comfortable cabin environment that allows occupants to enjoy stress-free conversation. Sound levels were measured in more than 1,500 locations on all body panels that face the exterior. This made it possible to determine where resonance was likely and where insulation was thin, which in turn led to effectively positioning vibration dampening material and sound insulation without increasing the weight of the body. This not only suppresses annoying and unpleasant sounds generated by the engine and tires from entering the cabin, it realizes a quality ride that enables cabin occupants to enjoy the powerful beat of the engine when accelerating.

Aerodynamic performance contributes to fuel economy and driving stability

Development of aerodynamic performance adhered to the "aerodynamically efficient ground line" concept used on Mazda's new-generation product lineup, while implementing extra measures to optimize it for the CX-4's body. The development team took full advantage of advanced Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis to strategically position aerodynamic parts where they would be most effective. As a result, the design achieves the radical styling of the Mazda CX-4 along with excellent aerodynamic performance, while also contributing to greater fuel economy and driving stability.

Measures implemented on the upper body to suppress turbulence from air striking the front of the vehicle include optimization of the duct shape used within the front grille, adoption of a flared shape for the trailing edge on the corners of the front bumper and headlamps, and smooth lines for the A-pillar cross-section. At the rear of the vehicle, measures to control the entrainment of air flowing down from the roof and streamline the flow of air over the rear window include optimization of the shape of the roof's trailing edge, and the addition of a rear spoiler and rear side spoilers. The shape of the rear combination lamps and bumper were also optimized.

Streamlining airflow along the underbody and guiding it straight out to the rear are a radiator undercover, engine undercover, tunnel undercover, center floor cover, as well as front and rear tire deflectors. Vehicles equipped with AWD also add a fuel tank undercover for the first time on a Mazda product.

World-class safety supports the fun of driving the Mazda CX-4

Based on Mazda Proactive Safety, the CX-4 adopts safety performance features that aim to maximize the driver's ability to remain aware of all pertinent information at all times, to operate the vehicle correctly, and for the vehicle to respond in strict accordance with the driver's intention. In addition to a driving environment that provides positive visibility and operating ease, active safety measures adopted on the CX-4 include Mazda's i-ACTIVSENSE advanced safety technologies, which are designed to support the driver through all the driving processes of cognition, judgment, and operation. Passive safety features build on Mazda's high-strength SKYACTIV-BODY. The thorough measures implemented to mitigate injuries in the event an accident should occur include the adoption of a wide variety of safety equipment. A number of detailed measures were also implemented to help protect pedestrians, and the overall result of Mazda's unique approach is excellent safety performance that will meet safety standards in markets around the world.

Advanced Blind Spot Monitoring (ABSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) function

The ABSM system uses a 24GHz quasi-milliwave radar sensor to help keep the driver aware of vehicles approaching from the blind spot areas at the sides and rear when, for example, merging with traffic on the highway or making lane changes. When the system detects vehicles approaching from the rear at distances of up to 50m from the car while travelling at speeds of 10km/h or greater, it issues a flashing visual indicator in the respective door mirror. If the driver switches on the turn signal on the same side, the indicator begins flashing and an alert sounds to warn the driver. The system also incorporates Mazda's Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) function, which alerts the driver when it detects vehicles approaching from either side as the driver backs up. This helps the driver confirm that it is safe to back out of a garage or parking space.

Smart City Brake Support (SCBS)

A near-infrared sensor mounted on the windshield monitors vehicles traveling ahead and automatically controls the brakes in a two-stage pattern when the system determines that a high risk of collision exists. At speeds between 4km/h and 30km/h, SCBS recognizes vehicles up to approximately six meters ahead of the Mazda CX-4. When the system determines that a high risk of collision exists, it begins to pressurize the brakes so they can provide strong stopping power the instant the driver applies them. If the driver fails to take evasive action at this point, the system automatically applies the brakes to slow the vehicle and prevent or soften impact.

High-strength SKYACTIV-BODY

The body was optimized to satisfy the characteristics of the driving scenes for which the Mazda CX-4 is intended, all without sacrificing its design goals or cabin comfort. Thorough examination of every detail, including the structures and materials, achieves the right weight and level of rigidity, while also realizing excellent safety performance.

Measures to protect against frontal impact

To achieve a high level of rigidity along with optimal weight, the Mazda CX-4 adopts an underbody with framework that uses as many straight sections as possible. Then, to secure a high level of safety from front-end collisions, it adopts a multi-load path structure and cross-shaped crush cans that effectively absorb and disperse impact force across the entire body. In addition, the front suspension crossmember is fitted with an extension that absorbs impact force. These measures effectively disperse energy that would otherwise reach the cabin in the event of a front-end collision, and thereby suppress cabin deformation.

Measures to protect against side impact

A continuous ring structure joins the roof and B-pillars to the underbody, suppressing cabin deformation while transmitting impact force through the frame and members to achieve a strong body. Instead of increasing the thickness of the metal, the frame incorporates larger cross-sections to secure a level of high rigidity. In addition, creating smooth protrusion-free forms and reducing the number of lines where bends in the frame begin realizes a frame that is less likely to bend when subject to impact force.

Measures to protect against rear impact

While reducing the amount that the rear bumper protrudes and realizing a short overhang, measures to secure a high level of collision safety in the rear include the use of cross-shaped sections that excel in absorbing energy in the crush cans supporting the rear bumper.

The use of ultra-high-tensile and high-tensile steel

High-tensile and ultra-high-tensile steel of up to 1,800MPa is used on 58% of the Mazda CX-4 body, but it's not simply about creating a stronger framework. Rather, it involves positioning the right high-strength materials in the right places, while intentionally introducing variations in the structural strength of materials to absorb impact force and protect cabin occupants in every way possible.


The front seatbelts are equipped with a pretensioner that tightens the seatbelts in the initial moment of a frontal collision and a load limiter that subsequently releases the belt in a controlled manner to lighten the load received by the occupant's chest.

SRS airbag system

Standard equipment on all configurations are front airbags that help protect the driver and front seat passenger against head and chest injury in the event of a collision, and side airbags that help protect the front seat occupants' chest, abdomen and hips in the event of impact from the side. Also available are curtain airbags that mitigate shock to the heads of front seat occupants in the event of a collision from the side.

Steering shaft designed to mitigate impact force

Moving the steering column forward, away from the driver, while absorbing impact energy softens the blow to the driver's chest in the event of a front-end collision.

Front seat structure mitigates impact to the head

The seatback structure makes it easier for the occupant's body to sink into it in the event of impact from the rear, the height, shape and position of the headrest is optimized to firmly support the head, and the seat cushion frame is designed to support both and mitigate shock to the head. In addition, the link mechanism for the seat lifter is strengthened to prevent the seatback from leaning back.

Door trim structure reduces impact shock to the hip

The door pockets are structured to absorb impact energy while collapsing to reduce the chance of hip injury in the event of impact from the side. To prevent secondary injury, the door trim structure is designed to disperse impact energy and not crack.

Rear seat structure helps prevent luggage from intruding into the cabin

The seatback frames are strengthened to prevent or reduce the possibility of injury to occupants caused by objects from the cargo area intruding into the cabin. The design employs stronger strikers and catches for the seats, as well as stronger hinges and body mounts.

ISOFIX child seat anchor points

To reduce the amount of injury to infants in the event of a collision, the left and right rear seats are fitted with ISOFIX anchors that promote easy, secure attachment of an ISOFIX child seat, and with top tether anchors that prevent the child seat from tipping forward.

Pedestrian protection

Ample space left between the hood and engine aims help soften the impact if a pedestrian's head should strike the hood in the event of an accident. In addition, the fender panels, fender brackets, lower edge of the windshield and hood hinge brackets are all designed to absorb energy. Designing these parts to retain an adequate level of strength under normal conditions, but to give easily in the event of an accident, helps mitigate shock received by the pedestrian should their head strike the hood.