Mazda CX-9 AWD Questions

kharriskharris Posts: 41
edited April 2014 in Mazda
Hi folks!
Can someone tell me if the CX-9 has a switch to lock the AWD so it has a 50/50 front/rear power distribution. A number of other crossover SUV's have this feature but I haven't seen it mentioned for the Mazda CX-9. Thanks!



  • carlitos92carlitos92 Posts: 458
    Does not. AWD is strictly "on demand," and the car itself decides what constitutes that "demand."

  • kharriskharris Posts: 41
    I'm sorry to hear that, but thanks for supplying the information. My experience has shown me that for some snow/incline conditions, the 50/50 distribution is noticeably better than letting the vehicle determine what it needs.

  • Can anyone give any insight if the AWD is worth the cash. I would think the FWD would handle all but the worst of weather...
  • aviboy97aviboy97 Posts: 3,159
    If you are in an area that gets snow, I would splurge the extra $1,200 to get the AWD. You don't want to have an instance where you wish you got it. You will never wish you didn't.
  • Live in Montana and my CX 9 does NOT handle snow or ice well at all. Absolutley undriveable/unsafe.

    Anyone else having this problem? Suggestions? Ideas?

  • howardruhowardru Posts: 155

    My recommendation is as follows:

    Go to Tire Rack and order the following:
    4 P235/65R-18 Bridgestone Blizzak DM-Z3 - Total - $548.00
    4 18x8 Sport Edition ST3 Bright Silver - Total -$516.00
    4 315MHz Tire Pressure Sensor -Total - $264.00

    Cost me $1400 shipped to my home in Boston, installed, balanced and ready to mount.

    Merry Christmas from Mazda!
  • Thanks...did the new tires completely fix the problem on snow and ice or just help some...a little or a lot?

    Yes, a great holiday gift from Mazda!
  • aviboy97aviboy97 Posts: 3,159
    Do you have a CX-9 GT? Every complaint I have heard about the CX-9 in the snow has to do with the 20" tires. They are more of a sport tire then 4 season tire, even though they are rated as a 4 season tire.

    The 18" wheels and tires I have not heard anyone have a problem with. I take a demo CX-9 home when it snows, and I always take a Sport or Touring and I get around just as good as my wife's Subi.
  • howardruhowardru Posts: 155
    I actually go so scared about what I read about the tires online, I never even tried mine in the snow. Put the Blizzaks on about a week or so ago, 3 days before the first snow hit Boston!

    No complaints so far.
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    From reading the web sites, it seems that some 2007 CX9s with AWD have high rate of transfer case failure. Even w/o snow, one can find an empty parking lot and try power takeoff. If it feels like a FWD, the transfer case is probably bad. Get a scangauge or do the following to see if there is any error code stored in your CX9...
    With NAVI system

    - Ignition Acc or On
    - Menu->Navigation Setup->Calibration->Map Version->Up/Up->Down/Down
    (Up/Up means tapping the top-left corner of the LCD screen 2 times
    Down/Down means the bottom-left corner 2 times)

    Now you are in the hidden diagnostic mode of your CX9 NAVI system.

    One of the choice is "Error Code".
    Enjoy the other stuff. You would love it. (there are so much info in there - but no way to deactiavte the NAVI lockout - believe me, I have searched for it) :D

    Hit Rtn or turn ignition off to get out of the diagnostic mode.
    There are some extra diagnostic codes one can enter to query more info, but
    that might be too much for most owners here...
  • To Howard U;

    I live in the Northeast as well, saw you posted on 12-23. I am considering a CX 9 AWD, and will travel occasionally to ski up North and generally drive around in the New England muck. How have you done during this most recent storm? Can you, or any others in the Forum, provide an opinion as to the worthiness of the CX 9 as a winter vehicle (grip, sliding, braking)?? Also, how are the new tires on dry pavement relative to road noise and handling? Will you use the winter tires as a winter only set up?

    Sounds like if I go the CX 9 route I should either negotiate a tire replacement at the buy, or resign myself to buy a winter set of tires and wheels.

    Also for all, any opinion on 18" vs 20" wheels? Thanks to All....KJ
  • howardruhowardru Posts: 155
    Hi KJinsk,

    I never drove the stock car and tires on snow here outside Worcester after reading all the postings about how bad the car was. I showed enough of these reports to my wife to convince her we should invest in the tires.

    With that said, since I put them on, I've had no problems driving up hills or stopping at stop signs or red lights. I have not done extensive driving on all snow, but mostly a lot of icy slush stuff up and down 495 and 290. It's only been about 2 weeks of snow now right?

    My biggest concern was how good the 18" Blizzak DMZ-3s would perform on dry or wet pavement. Not an issue at all. I think there is a little bit more road noise, but I guess I never really tried to listen to the tires before I put them on. I tried some deliberate fast acceleration in 1st gear to see how much the tires would slip and watch the Traction Control light come on, and it would not come on easily. The tires seemed to do well on straight packed snow.

    I bought the entire package off Tire Rack of tires, rims and TPMS so that I didn't have the local monkey at NTB scratching up my rims everytime I did the switch over. I plan to switch back to my normal stock rims/20" tires come April and hopefully the tires won't be work down too much so that I can use them the next 2 or 3 years.

    I'ld print out all these "issues" about the stock tires and bring it with you to the dealer for price negotiation and that it'll cost you about another $1400 for new tires/rims. Perhaps you can split the difference (they provide tires at $137 each and you pay for new rims for about the same and someone eats the TPMS if you want the light to be off for the winter).

    The only reason I went with the 18" was that the Blizzaks were $100 cheaper per tire and the new tire diameter was pretty much equivalent to my 20". Neither I nor my speedomter or odomoter know the difference.
  • Thanks Howard U, Very informative...Happy Sledding!!
  • What he said. Doesn't matter where you buy them but snows are a must for this car if driven in snow conditions. Tire rack is always an easy way to go as they mount, balance, and deliver. to keep the tires usable for many seasons, put them on the car when it becomes cold and starts to snow and take them off when the season is over. All high-tech snow tires do not wear well in warm conditions and are not the best dry road performing tire either. Dive easy in the winter to extend thier life. I mentioned in another thread, I bought 18" RX8 rims with TPS, Blizzak DMZs and had them mounted locally for about 1/2 of the full Tire rack package. The rims were good with same offset and had a few very minor blemishes but these are snow tires and I protect my 20s form the salt so it is a win-win
  • Thanks All;

    Thanks All...Couple of questions.

    Need a vehicle with a GVW of 6,000 lbs or more for a section 179 tax writeoff (capitol equipment investment), this fits the bill with VW, Volvo and others. Want a capable ride, presently have a Mitsubishi absolute tank in conditions but not that road worthy (not that fun to drive). Kids are young adults, but the extra room would be nice for trips. Impressions on this vehicle?? Road noise really bugs me...What are your thoughts on this car??

    Also, if I get the vehicle i will probably buy the GT, I will definetly get a winter tire package..are 18" winters okay without screwing up the speedo or od or vehicle??

    As an aside, these forums are great for info. Can remember a weekend in Vermont a few years ago, got close to 2' of snow in a day and a half. My Montero churned thru, saw Lexus's BMW's and others flailing, probably because of the tires and "crossover setup".

    What do you think, is this vehicle a good call?..It makes sense for the tax write off, room for occasional trips with the crew, room for my dog, etc. Have not bought a new car for me in 6 years. please let me know your thoughts?...Thanks to All... KJ
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Will you be using the vehicle for business at least 50% of the time?

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • my 2 cents.

    re. Tire size; going to an 18" inch rim will not affect the spedo or any other function in the car provided the right tire size is fitted. You will notice a softer ride due to increase sidwall size and a little sloppier handling. The handling is still excellent considering you are running snow tires so do not not push them as they will nevver give the performace or handling as OEM road tires on dry roads.

    re; space, you need to go look at one to see if it is really dog friendly. Not a lot of sace in the back with the thrid row up. We have a 25lb lap dog that travels fine with kenel in the back but would not let him loose in the car due to the leather of the GT and I don't think a 120 lab would fare well in the back are with the 3rd row up either.

    We bought this one for the road trips and love it 22-23mpg with an AWD GT. Paid too much for it last year and would not do the nav system again as a $250 wide screen Nuvi is better IMO. Stereo and bluetooth are good to go and the driving experience is always good.
  • I had the same problem, figuring the car was just not good in winter driving conditions. I have one of the first 07 Tourings. Turns out it was the transfer case. I finally had it checked out after having the car for a year and a half. The last straw was getting stuck turning into my driveway (which is on a SLIGHT incline) after a few inches of snow. Mazda was awesome about paying for a rental SUV for a week since the problem was diagnosed the day before I was leaving on a ski trip. It's fixed now, and a major difference. But, I do find the breaking on snow and ice is not great....

    So, my advice is bring it to the dealer. Also, if the 4WD drive light ever comes on in snowy conditions, this means a problem, not that it's kicking in :)
  • Thanks so much for that tip ceric -- I find that very useful! Could you possibly share the way to get to any other diagnostic menus that you know about? Either on the board or PM me at jgodman "at" tampabay.rr "dot com"


    John Godman

    Now you are in the hidden diagnostic mode of your CX9 NAVI system.

    There are some extra diagnostic codes one can enter to query more info, but
    that might be too much for most owners here...
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    Hi, John:

    Look at the .xls document on this thread posted by OMG.
  • rgn2000rgn2000 Posts: 1
    Does anyone know how to get to the diagnostic menus in the 2009 model?
  • cericceric Posts: 1,092
    Does it mean you have tried and the old procedure did not work for your 2009?
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