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2021 CX-5 hesitation/back and forth feeling

My 2021 CX-5 Sport has the same lugging jerking motion especially in traffic. Can be annoying at times. Miles are 2,027. Some hesitation when accelerating. Only complaint. Love this SUV.
 
Only had mine a few weeks. It's giving me flashbacks of my Subaru with a CVT. 0-30mph with gentle acceleration has a jerky, bucking feel though not as pronounced as with the CVT. Lugging is a good term.
 

HardRightEdg

US 2020 CX-5 Touring AWD Soul Red
Only had mine a few weeks. It's giving me flashbacks of my Subaru with a CVT. 0-30mph with gentle acceleration has a jerky, bucking feel though not as pronounced as with the CVT. Lugging is a good term.
Agreed, stop and go traffic is where I find it to be annoying and uncomfortable. My only disappointment.
Uneven low gear shifting is probably the most common performance complaint with the 2018-2021 2.5L conventionally aspirated engine with cylinder deactivation, though some turbo drivers also have voiced complaints about various bumps and jolts.

Without getting into the difference between a lug and a jolt or repeating too much of what's already been said:

1) I had TSB 05-002/20 applied (free under warranty), a PCM software update, which has been discussed above and in other threads. For me and my 2020 the TSB all but eliminated the low gear/low RPM lugging I experienced, replacing the lugs with occasional mild bumps into 2nd. or 3rd. gear. Not ideal, but a big improvement from where I started, let's say "within tolerance". Others who have had this TSB applied have reported no difference or claim it helped and then wore off. As far as I can tell this TSB has not been extended to 2021 models, and it may not be since you'd think the 2021 software would already be up to date, but you could keep a lookout for an update for 2021. It was updated twice previously as it was extended to more VINs.

2) Higher revving Sport mode alleviates the problem for many drivers. I would agree though I don't find it necessary post-TSB. If you can tolerate the louder engine, upshifting at higher RPMs, and the worse gas mileage that goes with it, that's an option. Might be worth a try situationally.

3) There's a driving technique you can try that falls under the unhappy category of adapting to the tool. When stopping at traffic light, leave more room behind the car in front. As they pull away, wait a beat or two before before giving it gas. A bit harder acceleration from a stop will get you to higher RPMs in 1st. and you might find a smoother upshift to 2nd. This probably won't do much good on a clogged road with a slow crawl and frequent stops.

4) Regardless, you may find the issues less pronounced with more load in the vehicle. On a recent day trip I had about 600 lbs. worth of passengers in the car. That extra load on the engine made for a smooth shifting day. Of course that doesn't do any good in a solo driving commute.

In the final analysis, the shifting is smoothest when giving it some beans as you get up to speed.

You probably don't want to hear this but Mazda has mentioned a smoother shifting transmission in the 2022 refresh. Oh, well.
 
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2021 Rav4 Prime
Just got my 2021 CX-5 and am concerned about a certain hesitation feeling I'm getting at slow speeds. It almost feels like I'm driving manual on first gear and letting go of the clutch. Didn't notice this on my test drive with other car. I've read how others have experienced this feeling too on their 2018's but no mention on newer models. Also was told by my sales guy that this is all part of the Skyactiv tech though I'm having a hard time believing him. Has anyone else had this problem? Thanks in advance.
This is pretty normal above 10mph, as the tq converter is fully locked, it is literally exactly like a manual should feel in 1st/2nd at 10-20mph. He is telling you correctly, it's a quirk of SA.
 
This is pretty normal above 10mph, as the tq converter is fully locked, it is literally exactly like a manual should feel in 1st/2nd at 10-20mph. He is telling you correctly, it's a quirk of SA.
If the torque converter is already locked then it should feel nothing like releasing the clutch in a manual in first gear. Also, Skyactive is simply a marketing term Mazda uses for all their current drivetrain components. It’s not an actual technology. Other brand transmissions have been using similar torque converter lockup in lower gears and lower speeds for longer than Mazda. Best example is the ubiquitous ZF 8HP since 2008. Having owned multiple vehicles with that transmission, it has none of this behavior. Mazda simply seems willing to accept putting components into production that haven’t quite had the programming refined to the same level. It feels like It has some of the low speed city driving drawbacks of a DSG without the benefits. Between that and still being a 6 speed, it’s definitely not industry leading tech like they market it as.
 

HardRightEdg

US 2020 CX-5 Touring AWD Soul Red
What fuel do you use in these errant vehicles?
For me it is regular 87 octane (US / (R+M)/2), 10% ethanol, Top Tier, typically Exxon. Octane is measured differently in some other countries. I seriously doubt higher octane would make any difference. It's a transmission issue. Or if one prefers, an engine-transmission system integration issue. Anyway, it's barely an issue now for me.
 
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2021 Rav4 Prime
If the torque converter is already locked then it should feel nothing like releasing the clutch in a manual in first gear. Also, Skyactive is simply a marketing term Mazda uses for all their current drivetrain components. It’s not an actual technology. Other brand transmissions have been using similar torque converter lockup in lower gears and lower speeds for longer than Mazda. Best example is the ubiquitous ZF 8HP since 2008. Having owned multiple vehicles with that transmission, it has none of this behavior. Mazda simply seems willing to accept putting components into production that haven’t quite had the programming refined to the same level. It feels like It has some of the low speed city driving drawbacks of a DSG without the benefits. Between that and still being a 6 speed, it’s definitely not industry leading tech like they market it as.
Ironically, its the quickest 0-60 and 5-60mph clocking vehicle in its class, even thiugh it has less gears, etc. Its fuel economy is tops, as well.
 
Ironically, its the quickest 0-60 and 5-60mph clocking vehicle in its class, even thiugh it has less gears, etc. Its fuel economy is tops, as well.
Which vehicle class or model are you basing that on. The Turbo is indeed right at or near the top for acceleration stats, but its fuel economy is toward the bottom. The n/a 2.5 is not at the top in either acceleration or fuel economy. Even if you mixed the turbo acceleration with the n/a fuel economy it still wouldn’t give that result as far as any rating I’ve seen.
 
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2022 2.5GT
Just got my 2021 CX-5 and am concerned about a certain hesitation feeling I'm getting at slow speeds. It almost feels like I'm driving manual on first gear and letting go of the clutch. Didn't notice this on my test drive with other car. I've read how others have experienced this feeling too on their 2018's but no mention on newer models. Also was told by my sales guy that this is all part of the Skyactiv tech though I'm having a hard time believing him. Has anyone else had this problem? Thanks in advance.
What fuel are you using in this vehicle?
 
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2021 Rav4 Prime
Which vehicle class or model are you basing that on. The Turbo is indeed right at or near the top for acceleration stats, but its fuel economy is toward the bottom. The n/a 2.5 is not at the top in either acceleration or fuel economy. Even if you mixed the turbo acceleration with the n/a fuel economy it still wouldn’t give that result as far as any rating I’ve seen.
Glc300, rdx, x3, escape turbo awd.
 
Ok those vehicles don’t seem like a class, just a mix of a few select luxury and non luxury small SUVs, of which the Escape is really the only one I’d class with the CX-5. According to Car and Driver the CX-5 is not the leader in acceleration or fuel economy like you claimed when compared to this group.

CX-5 Turbo: 0-60 in 6.1 Combined/City/Highway 24/22/27
Escape 2.0 Turbo 0-60 in 5.7 with MPG 24/22/28
GLC 300 0-60 in 5.4 with MPG 24/21/28
X3 0-60 in 6.2 with MPG 25/22/29
RDX 0-60 in 6.6 and MPG 23/21/26
 
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2021 Rav4 Prime
Ok those vehicles don’t seem like a class, just a mix of a few select luxury and non luxury small SUVs, of which the Escape is really the only one I’d class with the CX-5. According to Car and Driver the CX-5 is not the leader in acceleration or fuel economy like you claimed when compared to this group.

CX-5 Turbo: 0-60 in 6.1 Combined/City/Highway 24/22/27
Escape 2.0 Turbo 0-60 in 5.7 with MPG 24/22/28
GLC 300 0-60 in 5.4 with MPG 24/21/28
X3 0-60 in 6.2 with MPG 25/22/29
RDX 0-60 in 6.6 and MPG 23/21/26
Car and Driver tested the CX5 to 5.7 seconds 0-60, I believe. Consider, now, that the CX5 turbo has a 6-speed transmission. It somehow manages to only perform worse combined mpg-wise and 0-60 wise than ONE of these in either category (not the same one), despite the fact that all of these have "cutting edge" transmissions with up to 10 gears, and none having less than 8.

As far as a "class", the class is 4-cylinder turbo AWD CUV's making less than 300bhp. Dispite having only 6 gears, the CX5 seems to finish near the very top of the class, every time, in every acceleration and efficiency test.
 
Car and Driver tested the CX5 to 5.7 seconds 0-60, I believe. Consider, now, that the CX5 turbo has a 6-speed transmission. It somehow manages to only perform worse combined mpg-wise and 0-60 wise than ONE of these in either category (not the same one), despite the fact that all of these have "cutting edge" transmissions with up to 10 gears, and none having less than 8.
The numbers I provided are all from Car and Driver for the sake of consistency. I can find no record of C&D, or anyone else getting better than a 6.1 0-60 For the CX-5.

Based on the actual stats, it’s 3rd out of 5 in acceleration and 3rd out of 5 in MPG.

I don’t recall anyone calling 8+ speed transmissions cutting edge. 8 speeds have been around for well over a decade. 0.4 to 0.7 seconds better to 60 with equivalent MPG seems like a win for the Escape and GLC300 and their additional gears. BMW is within 0.1 to 60 while delivering 2 MPG better on the highway despite 300+ lbs extra from being more of a luxury vehicle. The RDX, sure it’s not better from a performance or mileage perspective so the CX-5 definitely wins that power & mileage comparison.
 
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2021 Rav4 Prime
The numbers I provided are all from Car and Driver for the sake of consistency. I can find no record of C&D, or anyone else getting better than a 6.1 0-60 For the CX-5.

Based on the actual stats, it’s 3rd out of 5 in acceleration and 3rd out of 5 in MPG.

I don’t recall anyone calling 8+ speed transmissions cutting edge. 8 speeds have been around for well over a decade. 0.4 to 0.7 seconds better to 60 with equivalent MPG seems like a win for the Escape and GLC300 and their additional gears. BMW is within 0.1 to 60 while delivering 2 MPG better on the highway despite 300+ lbs extra from being more of a luxury vehicle. The RDX, sure it’s not better from a performance or mileage perspective so the CX-5 definitely wins that power & mileage comparison.
Actual stats you couldn't find. It was 5.8 and not 5.7 seconds, though.:

60 mph: 5.8 sec
100 mph: 15.5 sec
130 mph: 35.9 sec
Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 6.4 sec
Top gear, 30–50 mph: 3.1 sec
Top gear, 50–70 mph: 4.3 sec
1/4 mile: 14.4 sec @ 97 mph
Top speed (governor limited): 130 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 174 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.77 g
*stability-control-inhibited
 
Actual stats you couldn't find. It was 5.8 and not 5.7 seconds, though.:

60 mph: 5.8 sec
100 mph: 15.5 sec
130 mph: 35.9 sec
Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 6.4 sec
Top gear, 30–50 mph: 3.1 sec
Top gear, 50–70 mph: 4.3 sec
1/4 mile: 14.4 sec @ 97 mph
Top speed (governor limited): 130 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 174 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.77 g
*stability-control-inhibited
Yes, let’s add a 40k mile fully broken in test for one vehicle to the mix. Sorry I was looking for equivalent new vehicle tests. Even so, 5.8 still ranks 3rd, so no change in the rankings…
 
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2021 Rav4 Prime
Yes, let’s add a 40k mile fully broken in test for one vehicle to the mix. Sorry I was looking for equivalent new vehicle tests. Even so, 5.8 still ranks 3rd, so no change in the rankings…
Interestingly, some vehicles get slower. Subarus for example always end slower in the 40K mile test wrap-ups by C&D.