On a recent trip to Santa Fe, California, I had the amazing opportunity to experience the 2017 Mazda CX-5 and Miata MX-5 RF and saw just why Mazda tops the list of luxury car brands.
A special thanks to Mazda for hosting me during this retreat and for giving me the opportunity to drive a 2017 Mazda CX5 and MX-5 RF to learn more about their brand and their cars.
If you follow along any of my social media accounts like instagram, you probably know that I spent a few days in California in early June. Mazda invited me to Santa Fe to experience the 2017 CX-5 and MX-5 RF. Before I get into my experience, I must let you in on a little secret… I am in no way, shape, or form a car guru. However, I do drive a car almost daily and I’ve driven my fair share of different cars so let’s go with that!
This wasn’t my first experience with Mazda. Last year I was invited to check out the 2017 Mazda 6 and I learned quickly that the Mazda brand was definitely leading the way with luxury and details. I actually didn’t know anything about the brand before that trip, but that has definitely changed. Now I notice every Mazda I meet on the road.
Last year the luxury and details of the brand are what stood out most to me and while those two things are definitely still in the forefront of the Mazda brand, I dug a little deeper to find out just why this brand is topping lists in the car industry. In fact, I put them at the very top of luxury car brands!
After having the opportunity to listen to a Mazda designer speak, the way I look at cars is totally different. To hear Julien Montousse, the director of design for Mazda North American Operations, share about these cars, from concept to design to product, makes them truly come to life… in pictures and in person.
Mazda strives to make cars that people will enjoy driving and they’ve hit it right on the head with these two. While I’ve definitely had cars that are fun to drive, most daily drivers just aren’t… am I right fellow minivan Mamas?! The CX-5 is a car that I could definitely see as a family friendly car, but yet something I enjoy driving. The car literally feels like it was made around you.
The techonology available on the CX-5 is also something I haven’t experienced in any car that I’ve owned before. The Infotainment center is amazing for GPS, phone integration, and rearview camera capabilities. But my absolute favorite is the Heads Up Display which shows right in your site line with useful information like GPS directions, your speed, speed limit, and other driving alerts. It’s amazing and something I will definitely want when we’re in the market for a new car.
The driving experience in the Miata MX-5 RF is exactly as you would imagine it… seamless, effortless, and FUN! Letting the top down in this hard top convertible and driving through the winding roads of Southern California was an amazing experience that I truly hope wasn’t just a once-in-a-lifetime one because… I want to do it again!
Perhaps calling a car beautiful is a stretch, but when you see the Mazda fleet in the one-of-a-kind Mazda red, that’s exactly how you’ll describe them.
The living art frame perfectly exemplified that these cars are living artwork, as well as was the backdrop of our accommodations, the Rancho Valencia Resort and Spa. The resort features a timeless Mediterranean ambiance and a refreshing residential experience as the 49 rooms are actually hacienda-style suites. It’s unlike any other hotel experience I’ve ever had. This was my first visit to Southern California and I feel like when I go back, I don’t want to go anywhere else.
You can see what my room looked like in my instagram photos here. The resort was breathtaking and fit perfectly with the Mazda brand… luxury in the details and beautiful.
While it’s not a word that is used to describe cars these days, it’s definitely accurate for the Mazda brand. You may have seen the latest Mazda commercial featuring a master modeler highlighting the way the automaker’s cars begin as clay slabs and are then sculpted into design elements that they incorporate into the car’s design. It’s not just for show or for TV, it’s truly how the concept designs begin for Mazda.
During our last dinner at the resort, there was an amazing demonstration set up where we could see this process in person. I even had the chance of trying it out myself! While I don’t think I have quite the calling in this creative space, it was amazing to see the forms taking shape of the CX-5.
The entire experience with Mazda during these few days aligned with the brand, including an olive oil tasting. While many think of Southern California as wine country, it’s also adorned with the most beautiful olive groves! We had the amazing chance to try handcrafted olive oils at the Temecula Olive Oil Company.
Right along with the term handcrafted comes Energy. It was explained to us that the designers, who sculpt the car’s form out of clay, along with the automakers who handcraft pieces of the car, put their energy into each car they make in hopes that that energy will be felt by the driver.
To understand this, we had an afternoon meditation session. It was such a great reminder to take time to clear my head to help creativity flow in my own life too.
Last but certainly not least, one reason that I feel Mazda tops the luxury car brands list is the brand’s efficiency.
I was incredibly surprised to learn that for the fourth consecutive year, Mazda has achieved the highest fuel-efficiency of any mainstream automotive manufacturer in the industry. The reason this is truly amazing is because they do not have a hybrid or electric vehicle in their fleet. So how is this so?! That’s exactly what I asked too. Now, I won’t even pretend to understand SKYACTIV technology, but that’s the secret to it all.
“Using our unique SKYACTIV Technology, Mazda has been able to achieve class-leading fuel efficiency in nearly every segment it competes in while remaining true to its core mission that Driving Matters.“ – Source
After having the experience to talk personally with Mazda designers, brand representatives, and even a senior vice president in the company – I’m quite sure they’ve made their dreams of the Mazda brand a reality. It does top luxury car brands lists again and again for their cars’ performance and experience.
This amazing opportunity definitely topped my list of driving experiences and life experiences.