The notion of a sport utility vehicle still conjures name Bronco, Blazer, Scout and Trooper. Of course the Range Rover and Land Cruiser live in this category as well.

It’s a nasty winter here in the Nation’s Capital. We may reset the snow accumulation record. Driving for the seasoned winter veteran is most challenging. Additionally, our area is already noted as the most traffic congested place in North America. With this winter dead on top of us, a sure footed vehicle has become nearly a requirement.

The Mazda CX9 is literally a Family Fun Vehicle (FFV). It’s the largest Mazda in their North American fleet. Available in three trim levels – Sport, Touring and Grand Touring – CX-9 is not one to discriminate and offers all consumers a mid-size SUV that delivers on dynamics and content as well as provides all occupants a front-row seat to sophistication and comfort. It also can be had with the All Wheel Drive (AWD) option in all 3 trim levels. It is powered by a very health 3.7 V6 24 Valve Double overhead cam motor that produces a very healthy 273 Horse Power.

But enough of the specs- all the specs are listed below including how to “Build your own CX9” and get to your closest dealer.

Join me on a ride around Washington DC. The CX9 is spacious and luxurious actually down right sumptuous. Our model was the Grand Touring AWD version- Seating for 7, easily folding away for a wide and deep storage compartment. While the most rearward seats are more compatible for the youngsters in your life, the rear seating is quite spacious. It will seat 3 normal sized adults with plenty of leg room. These reseats will recline for comfortable cruising/sleeping.

Driving this FFV is a very pleasurable experience. Seating is completely adjustable to custom fit nearly everyone. Heated seats this winter were a real pleasure. All instruments are clean to the eye and easily read even when you have the steering wheel in the “racing position”. My mileage was right at factory specs with 16 around town and 22 on the highway.

What was most impressive was the Sure Footed feeling as it snowed the week I was test driving the CX9. No problems with handling, starting or stopping what so ever. I felt very safe driving this Family Fun Vehicle- Advanced front air bags with seat belt-use. It comes with standard Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) w/ Electronic Brakeforce Distribution. Front side-impact air bags and side-impact air curtains with rollover protection 3-point seat belts for all seating positions (EBD)  Dynamic Stability Control (DSC)** and Traction Control System (TCS) are all standard.

In my day, entertainment in the back of the “family wagon” was either a punching battle with my brother or picking on our sister. Today, these entertainment systems are as hi quality as your home-GT Rear Seat Entertainment System (1EP): 9" DVD with Bose® Audio featuring Centerpoint®, 11 Speakers, Navigation System, 115 Volt Outlet.

Hey kids-There is no reason to want to stay at home when you can roll with your entertainment until your parents make the next stop! So get on the road and Zoom Zoom to whatever destination you desire, it will look good in front of that 5 Star restaurant as well as the ski slope or the beach.

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