When I really started working with cars on a frequent basis a few years back, Mazda was a nameplate that didn't immediately strike me as interesting. For some reason, the cars of their past were largely stuck in my head - images of the 1980s that I just couldn't shake. But once I had a real chance to experience what Mazda is now, I really became a fan. In fact, I love their CX series - with last year's CX-9 ranking among my favorite vehicles of the year. Now comes a look at the 2017 Mazda6 GT.
Last month, while the folks at Mazda USA were in Southern California doing an unveiling of some of their upcoming rides for 2017, I was here in Northern Illinois enjoying one of their most recent releases - the 2016.5 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD. Now, I think a lot of readers might not be familiar with a mid-model-year update, as it's far less common these days as it used to be. Quite simply, the CX-5 received some updates to carry the '16 into '17, and hence the 2016.5 moniker. Thanks to the unseasonably warm temperatures and some suburbs-to-city adventures I had planned (the Nintendo Switch launch, for one), I was able to spend a solid week with the car, giving it a hands-on evaluation in several conditions. More importantly, I got some real family time in this one, using one of its Mazda siblings (and one of my favorite cars of the past year) for some comparison... the CX-9.
Rock Father Rides is a new section of The Rock Father that's devoted to Automotive Coverage for the Octane-Obsessed Family... from toy cars to real rides.
While I'd like to think that I've always had a penchant for cars with a bit of style, speed, and perhaps a dash of the sly and sinister, the reality is that function and dependability has always reigned supreme when my final buying decision was made. After all, back in '97, I bought a new Ford wagon (and slapped a "bra" and sport wheels on it to make it look "cooler") because it got good mileage and was able to perfectly fit my Peavey Half-Stack in the back, along with room for my guitars when I was still in a band on a regular basis. Now, as a parent, my vehicular needs have to account for other factors that accommodate a family of four. Earlier this month, the crew over at Mazda USA asked if I'd take their new Mazda3 for a spin and put it to The Rock Father test. And test it, I did... but I might not be the most important reviewer...