2024 Mazda CX-5 vs. 2024 Toyota RAV4: Head to head

2024 Mazda CX-5 vs. 2024 Toyota RAV4: Head to head

2024 Toyota RAV 4 v 2024 CX-5 Collage
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Toyota car sales, USA | Mazda Motor Company

Mazda CX-5 or Toyota RAV4: which is better?

Toyota’s RAV4 has been a mainstay of the crossover market since 1996. The Mazda CX-5 is a much more recent addition to the compact SUV segment, but it’s Mazda’s best-selling model and highly regarded by owners and car reviewers. Choosing between two SUVs while shopping for a new crossover can seem daunting.

But don’t be afraid. U.S. News is here with a category-by-category breakdown to help you discover which of these two popular deals is right for you.

We used US News Best Cars ratings and registration data to compare the two midsize SUVs. We dive into performance, interior quality, technology, safety ratings and other key features to help you decide which three-row midsize SUV is the best choice for you.

Our results and rankings change periodically as new data becomes available, so the results and details in this slideshow may not precisely match information found elsewhere on our site. For the latest information, see our full reviews.

Read on to find out how the RAV4 and CX-5 compare.

the next:price

Toyota Motor Sales, USA

price

Winner: 2024 Toyota RAV4

The 2024 Toyota RAV4 starts at $28,475, while the 2024 Mazda CX-5 starts at $29,300. Although the RAV4 is slightly cheaper, it’s important to note that the Mazda comes standard with all-wheel drive. The Toyota comes with front-wheel drive, and it will cost you an additional $1,400 to upgrade to all-wheel drive.

At the other end of the trim lineup, Toyota once again comes out a little ahead. The range-topping CX-5 starts at $40,600, while the most expensive RAV4 carries an MSRP of $38,095.

the next:credibility

2024 Mazda CX-5
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Mazda operations in North America

credibility

Winner: 2024 Mazda CX-5

The CX-5 received a predicted reliability rating of 82 out of 100 from J.D. Power, besting the RAV4’s score of 76.

J.D. Power’s predicted reliability score of 91-100 is considered best, 81-90 is outstanding, 70-80 is average, and 0-69 is acceptable and considered below average.

Both SUVs get identical warranties: three-year, 36,000-mile limited warranties and five-year, 60,000-mile coverage for their engines.

the next:Seat comfort

2024 Mazda CX-5
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Mazda operations in North America

Seat comfort

Winner: 2024 Mazda CX-5

The CX-5 has supportive front seats that remain comfortable during long trips. The back seats are roomy enough for adult passengers as well, and they recline. Faux leather upholstery and heated front seats are standard, and options include leather upholstery, ventilated front seats and heated rear seats.

The RAV4’s front seats offer ample room, and are fairly comfortable, though they’re not as supportive during long trips as the Mazda’s seats. The Toyota’s back seats have enough room for adults to ride without feeling cramped. Cloth upholstery comes standard. Faux leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, and heated rear seats are available.

Mazda wins here for having slightly more comfortable seats and a better list of standard and available seating features.

the next:Cargo space

Toyota Motor Sales, USA

Cargo space

Winner: 2024 Toyota RAV4

The Toyota RAV4 has one of the largest cargo bays available in its class, with an impressive 37.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the back row. With the rear seats flat, they offer only 70 cubic feet of total storage space. The seats are also very easy to store, and reviewers noted that the Toyota’s low bumper and floor make it easy to load.

The Mazda CX-5, on the other hand, has one of the most compact cargo bays of the compact SUV market, with 30.8 cubic feet behind the rear seats and 59.3 cubic feet with the second row flat. If cargo capacity is what you need, Toyota is your best bet.

the next:Interior quality

2024 Mazda CX-5
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Mazda operations in North America

Interior quality

Winner: 2024 Mazda CX-5

Both of these SUVs are fun, but only one comes close to the luxury-car experience, and that’s the Mazda CX-5. Although the CX-5 starts at a very reasonable price, its interior trims—particularly on higher-end models with leather upholstery—are downright luxurious. Its interior fit and finish are unparalleled in the compact SUV segment.

The Toyota RAV4, on the other hand, is more in line with what you’d expect at this price point, with hard plastics and a simpler interior. It’s not annoying, but it feels more common for its class.

the next:In-house technology

Toyota Motor Sales, USA

In-house technology

Winner: 2024 Toyota RAV4

The Toyota RAV4 comes with an 8-inch touchscreen, wireless Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a Wi-Fi hotspot, a six-speaker stereo, and automatic climate control. A 10.5-inch touchscreen and a 12.3-inch instrument cluster are available.

The Mazda CX-5 is a bit less straightforward. It has a 10.2-inch display that is not a touchscreen and is instead controlled with a knob located on the center console. This works well with the original Mazda software, but makes using Apple CarPlay and Android Auto a headache.

Because its infotainment setup is more user-friendly, the RAV4 takes a narrow win here.

the next:Acceleration

2024 Mazda CX-5
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Mazda operations in North America

Acceleration

Winner: 2024 Mazda CX-5

The Mazda CX-5 has two engine options: the base 187-horsepower 2.5-liter engine and a 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-four that produces 256 horsepower and a whopping 320 pound-feet of torque. The base engine is adequate, but the turbo engine is the knockout. Both engines also get a six-speed automatic transmission.

The Toyota RAV4 comes with only one engine: a 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 203 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. Low-end torque means its acceleration feels choppy, and while the eight-speed transmission paired with the inline-four is smooth, the engine itself is loud under full throttle. It feels a lot less powerful than the Mazda.

the next:Fuel economy

Toyota Motor Sales, USA

safety

Winner: TBD

Both of these SUVs received an overall safety rating of five out of five stars from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and neither has been crash-tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Additionally, none of the vehicles received a safety score in U.S. News as of this writing. As a result, we do not have enough information to announce a winner in this category.

the next:the winner is …

Toyota Motor Sales, USA

the winner is …

Winner: 2024 Mazda CX-5

In this showdown, the CX-5 won five classes compared to the RAV4’s four, giving Mazda a narrow win.

The CX-5 is more fun to drive thanks to its superior acceleration, handling and ride quality. It also has a much nicer interior, more comfortable seats, and an expected higher reliability rating.

The RAV4 performs better in what we might call the “more practical” categories. It offers more luggage space, gets better gas mileage, and has a more user-friendly infotainment system. It also costs a little less.

Both are good SUVs, and worth checking out. But the CX-5 is the superior car. In addition to winning this showdown, it performs much better in our compact SUV rankings. It sits near the top, while the RAV4 is in the middle of the pack.

the next:More shopping tools from US News & World Report

US News Best Prices Program
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US News and World Report

More shopping tools from US News & World Report

For more information about the Toyota RAV4 and Mazda CX-5, check out their individual reviews. Visit our midsize SUV rankings to see how these vehicles compare to their closest competitors.

The US News Best Price program connects shoppers who want to buy or lease a new car with local dealers. It offers great savings with pre-negotiated prices, home delivery and online selling options.

the next:2024 Mazda CX-5 vs. 2024 Toyota RAV4: Head to head

(Tags for translation)Victoria Scott

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