Hyundai Palisade vs Mazda CX-9: The Battle of the Three-Row SUVs

Hyundai Palisade vs Mazda CX-9: Compare key aspects like seating capacity, engine performance, safety features, and technology integrations to make an informed SUV choice.
Hyundai Palisade vs Mazda CX-9: The Battle of the Three-Row SUVs

Hyundai Palisade vs Mazda CX-9: A Comprehensive Comparison

Navigating the realm of three-row SUVs can be a daunting task, especially when faced with compelling options like the Hyundai Palisade and the Mazda CX-9. Both vehicles promise spacious interiors, versatile features, and impressive performance, catering to the needs of families and adventure-seekers alike. To help you make an informed decision, let's delve into a comprehensive comparison of these two formidable contenders.

1. Design and Styling: Aesthetics and Functionality United

The Hyundai Palisade exudes a bold and sophisticated presence with its cascading grille, striking LED headlights, and sculpted body lines. Its imposing stance is further enhanced by available 20-inch alloy wheels and a panoramic sunroof, lending an air of grandeur to every journey. In contrast, the Mazda CX-9 embraces a sleek and athletic design philosophy. Its signature Kodo design language translates into a flowing silhouette, sharp creases, and an aggressive front fascia. The available 20-inch wheels and dual exhaust tips add a sporty touch, creating a dynamic and head-turning appearance.

2. Interior Comfort and Convenience: A Haven for Passengers

The Hyundai Palisade's cabin is designed to provide utmost comfort and convenience for all occupants. Eight-passenger seating comes standard, with the option to upgrade to a seven-passenger configuration with second-row captain's chairs. The spacious interior offers ample legroom and headroom, even for taller individuals. High-quality materials and intuitive technology further enhance the premium experience within the Palisade. The Mazda CX-9 offers a refined and driver-centric interior, with seating for up to eight passengers. The front seats provide excellent support and adjustability, ensuring long-distance journeys are undertaken with comfort. The second and third rows provide adequate space for adults, although the Palisade offers slightly more generous legroom in the third row. The CX-9's cabin is well-appointed, with premium materials and thoughtful design elements creating a sophisticated ambiance.

3. Performance and Handling: Power and Refinement

Under the hood of the Hyundai Palisade lies a potent 3.8-liter V6 engine that generates 291 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. Paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, the Palisade delivers smooth and responsive acceleration, making overtaking maneuvers and highway cruising effortless. The HTRAC all-wheel-drive system ensures confident handling and traction in various conditions. The Mazda CX-9 is powered by a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 250 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque. Mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel drive, the CX-9 offers a spirited driving experience with ample low-end torque. Despite its smaller engine size, the CX-9 provides comparable acceleration to the Palisade, thanks to its lighter weight.

4. Fuel Efficiency: Balancing Performance and Economy

When it comes to fuel efficiency, the Hyundai Palisade delivers an EPA-estimated 19 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. The Mazda CX-9 offers slightly better fuel economy, with EPA estimates of 20 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. However, real-world fuel economy may vary depending on driving conditions and individual driving habits.

5. Cargo Capacity and Versatility: Adapting to Diverse Needs

The Hyundai Palisade boasts a cavernous cargo area, offering 18.0 cubic feet of space behind the third row, 45.8 cubic feet with the third row folded down, and a maximum of 86.4 cubic feet with both rear rows folded down. This generous cargo capacity makes the Palisade an ideal choice for families who need ample space for luggage, sports equipment, or bulky items. The Mazda CX-9 also provides respectable cargo space, with 14.4 cubic feet behind the third row, 38.2 cubic feet with the third row folded down, and a maximum of 76.2 cubic feet with both rear rows folded down. While the Palisade offers slightly more cargo capacity, the CX-9's cargo area is still versatile and can accommodate various luggage configurations.

6. Safety Features: Prioritizing Passenger Protection

The Hyundai Palisade comes equipped with a comprehensive suite of safety features, including forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and blind-spot monitoring. Additionally, the Palisade offers adaptive cruise control, a surround-view camera system, and a heads-up display, further enhancing driver awareness and safety. The Mazda CX-9 also boasts an impressive array of safety features, including forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and blind-spot monitoring. In addition, the CX-9 offers adaptive cruise control, a surround-view camera system, and a traffic sign recognition system, providing drivers with peace of mind on every journey.

7. Technology and Connectivity: Staying Connected and Informed

The Hyundai Palisade features an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, allowing seamless smartphone integration. The system also includes navigation, SiriusXM satellite radio, and a premium audio system, ensuring both driver and passengers stay entertained and connected during their travels. The Mazda CX-9 offers a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. The system is complemented by a Bose 12-speaker premium audio system, delivering a rich and immersive sound experience. The CX-9 also features a head-up display, providing important driving information within the driver's line of sight.

8. Price and Trim Levels: Tailoring to Diverse Budgets

The Hyundai Palisade offers a range of trim levels, starting with the SE, followed by the SEL, Limited, and Calligraphy. Prices range from $34,250 for the SE to $49,850 for the Calligraphy. The Mazda CX-9 is available in four trim levels: Sport, Touring, Grand Touring, and Signature. Prices start at $36,850 for the Sport and reach $49,460 for the Signature.

9. Warranty and Maintenance: Ensuring Peace of Mind

The Hyundai Palisade comes with a comprehensive warranty package, including a 5-year/60,000-mile limited warranty, a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and a 7-year/unlimited-mile anti-perforation warranty. The Mazda CX-9 offers a 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty, a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty, and a 7-year/100,000-mile anti-perforation warranty.

10. Conclusion: A Decision Based on Your Priorities

The Hyundai Palisade and Mazda CX-9 are both excellent choices for families seeking spacious and well-equipped three-row SUVs. The Palisade offers more cargo space, a more powerful engine, and a longer warranty, while the CX-9 provides better fuel economy, a more engaging driving experience, and a larger touchscreen infotainment system. Ultimately, the decision between these two compelling SUVs depends on your individual preferences, priorities, and budget. Whether you prioritize space and comfort above all else or seek a more engaging driving experience, both the Hyundai Palisade and Mazda CX-9 deliver in their respective ways.