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Kelley Blue Book: The 2022 Mazda CX-9 vs. the Volvo XC90: Which is better?

The Mazda CX-9 and Volvo XC90 have very different starting prices, but these SUVs are more similar than you might think. They both offer 3-row seating and outstanding safety scores, making them suitable for families.

Let’s take a closer look at these SUVs and find the right one for you.

2022 Mazda CX-9

The Mazda CX-9 is an upscale and athletic choice in mainstream midsize SUVs. It’s Mazda’s

biggest SUV and still has the agile handling of a smaller vehicle. Pricing starts at $35,630.

Mazda CX-9 highlights

Value pricing: The Mazda CX-9 is the more affordable choice between these two SUVs. It not only has a reasonable starting price, but it has an impressive list of standard features, adding to its value proposition. Standard features include all-wheel drive, heated front seats, tri-zone climate control, Android Auto, Apple

CarPlay, and the i-Activsense safety tech suite.

Fun to drive: The CX-9 only has one powertrain option, but you won’t hear us complain about it. The turbocharged engine under the hood delivers satisfying thrust with 310 lb-ft of torque, and the well-tuned chassis gives it the fun driving character for which Mazda is famous. Meanwhile, the standard AWD system improves both all-season traction and on-road grip.

Good interior quality for the money: The interior of the CX-9 isn’t as luxurious as the XC90, but it’s one of the most excellent interiors you’ll find in a non-luxury SUV. This premium cabin has a pleasing design, nice materials, and modern tech features making the CX-9 feel like a more expensive SUV than it is.

Also see: The popular Lexus RX now has 3 hybrid choices and a handsome new look

2022 Volvo XC90

The Volvo XC90


The Volvo

XC90 is one of the most practical and family-friendly options in midsize 3-row luxury SUVs. It has generous interior space, unique aesthetics, and the safety the brand is known for. Pricing starts at $56,000.

Also see: These are the safest new cars of the year

Volvo XC90 highlights

Luxurious interior: The interior of the CX-9 is nice, but the cabin of the XC90 is even more elegant. The quality of the leather is top-notch, the seats are supremely comfortable, and there’s slightly more interior space than the Mazda. Luxurious standard features include a digital gauge cluster, navigation, wireless charging, a panoramic moonroof, and 4-zone climate control.

Plug-in hybrid option: The XC90 Recharge is a plug-in hybrid that makes 455 horsepower and can travel up to 32 miles on electricity alone. This hybrid powertrain improves the performance and efficiency of the XC90 without compromising on safety or practicality.

Scandinavian style: The Volvo XC90 has a distinct, Scandinavian appearance inside and out, making it good for drivers looking for something a little different. This Volvo delivers family-friendly utility with a unique aesthetic.

Check out: Not ready for an electric car? These future models could make you change your mind.


IIHS Top Safety Pick+, 3-row seating, similar size and interior space, standard turbo engine


Which of these SUVs is right for you largely depends on your budget. The Volvo XC90 has many of the same strengths as the CX-9, like 3-row seating and the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ designation, but with a more luxurious interior and more powertrain options, but at a much higher price point. The Mazda is a better value if you’re looking for a premium family SUV without a premium price tag.

2022 Mazda CX-9

2022 Volvo XC90

Starting Price



Popular Powertrains


2.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder

2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder


227 hp @ 5,000 rpm

250 hp @ 5,500 rpm


310 lb-ft @ 2,000 rpm

258 lb-ft @ 1,500 rpm


6-speed automatic

8-speed automatic

Fuel Economy

20 city/26 highway/23 combined mpg

21 city/30 highway/25 combined mpg

Max Towing

3,500 pounds

5,000 pounds

Also Available

Supercharged/turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, plug-in hybrid powertrain, AWD


Basic Warranty

3 years/36,000 miles

4 years/50,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty

5 years/60,000 miles

4 years/50,000 miles

NHTSA Overall Safety

5 stars

5 stars

Max Seating Capacity




115.3 inches

117.5 inches

Overall Length

199.4 inches

195.0 inches


77.5 inches

75.7 inches


67.6 inches

69.9 inches

Turning Diameter

38.8 feet

39.7 feet

Headroom, 1st Row

40.1 inches

38.9 inches

Headroom, 2nd Row

38.5 inches

38.5 inches

Headroom, 3rd Row

35.4 inches

36.3 inches

Legroom, 1st Row

41.0 inches

40.9 inches

Legroom, 2nd Row

39.4 inches

37.0 inches

Legroom, 3rd Row

29.7 inches

31.9 inches

Shoulder Room, 1st Row

57.9 inches

57.7 inches

Shoulder Room, 2nd Row

58.1 inches

56.5 inches

Shoulder Room, 3rd Row

53.1 inches

46.9 inches

Cargo Volume

21.5/50.5/84.9 cubic feet

21.8/49.6/80.3 cubic feet

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