MAZDA CX-9 vs Toyota Highlander

2020 Mazda CX-9

If you’ve been searching for a 3-row crossover SUV that is ideal for family driving while also helping you get where you’re going with confidence, style, and grace, there are a couple of models that may have recently come onto your radar. Two SUVs at the top of your list will most likely be the 2020 Mazda CX-9 and the 2020 Toyota Highlander since both feature abundant amenities, confident performance, and a striking exterior design.

To help you decide which crossover SUV will help take your travels in and around Gastonia, Charlotte, and Lincolnton, NC, to the next level, we here at Mazda of Gastonia have put together this Mazda CX-9 vs. Toyota Highlander comparison. Ready to see which crossover you’ll be traveling town in? Keep reading!

2020 Mazda CX-9 Engine Specs

Mazda CX-9

MAZDA CX-9 vs Highlander Standard Performance Capabilities

When comparing the engine specs of the Mazda CX-9 vs. Toyota Highlander, you’ll notice that each engine has its advantage. With the Highlander, you’ll have more horsepower, but with the Mazda CX-9, you have much more torque. Let’s take a closer look at these specs:

MAZDA CX-9 vs Toyota Highlander Engine Specs



Toyota Highlander


Skyactiv®-G 2.5T Dynamic Pressure Turbo

3.5L V6


250 HP

295 HP


320 lb-ft

263 lb-ft


By now, you might be wondering which is better: higher torque or higher horsepower. Well, it depends on what you’re doing. Torque makes it possible for your crossover SUV to get the job done while horsepower is how fast this work will be done.

So, when you’re looking for an SUV that can go from 0-100 in the blink of an eye, the Highlander is for you, but if you want an SUV that can perform more work over an extended period of time, the Mazda CX-9 is just what you’re looking for.

2020 Mazda CX-9 MPG

MAZDA CX-9 vs Toyota Highlander Fuel Economy

Speaking of longer distances of time, you’ll find it’s possible to travel longer in the Mazda CX-9 thanks to its higher fuel efficiency. With this crossover SUV, you’ll have an EPA-estimated 22 city/28 highway MPG. When looking at the Toyota Highlander, you’ll have an EPA-estimated 21 city/29 highway MPG.

While this slight difference doesn’t seem like much at first glance, when comparing the fuel tank sizes of the Mazda CX-9 vs. Toyota Highlander, you’ll quickly see this makes a more significant difference. That’s because the Mazda CX-9 has a 19-gallon fuel tank size while the Highlander only has a 17.9-gallon tank.

2020 Mazda CX-9 Interior

Comfort & Convenience Features

While both crossover SUVs offer a plethora of comfort and convenience features, you’ll find some differences between the Mazda CX-9 and Toyota Highlander that could make your travels even more comfortable.

For example, while you can equip your interior with available leather seats and wood trim, only on the Mazda CX-9 will you have standard 3-stage heated front seats to help you relax and stay less fatigued on even the longest of trips.

From there, you can enjoy your favorite songs thanks to the Bluetooth® connectivity offered on both SUVs. Although, Mazda CX-9 drivers will have a more immersive sound experience thanks to the optional Bose® Centerpoint® 2 Surround Sound System that includes 12 speakers. There are only 11 speakers with the JBL® audio system of the Highlander.


MAZDA CX-9 vs Toyota Highlander: Which Will You Choose?

When you’re looking for your next family SUV, performance, fuel economy, and comfort features are likely at the top of your mind. After comparing these features of the Mazda CX-9 vs. Toyota Highlander, it’s clear that the Mazda CX-9 is the victor.

To learn more about all the ways this SUV will enhance your commute in and around Gastonia, Charlotte, and Lincolnton, give our team at Mazda of Gastonia a visit today!

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