Inside Mazda

Mazda CX-3, CX-5 and CX-9 Sweep Category Awards at Annual Texas Auto Writers’ Truck Rodeo

Everything’s bigger in Texas, especially the trophy case Mazda needs for its three crossover SUVs that swept their categories at the annual Truck Rodeo, hosted by the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA).

Seventy-five journalists reviewed dozens of trucks and SUVs over two days, deliberating on the best in the West. All three of the crossover SUVs that Mazda sells in the U.S.—the CX-3, CX-5 and three-row CX-9—won their respective categories. This gallon-sized hat trick made Mazda the only automaker to carry a royal flush in this game of Texas hold ‘em.

Photo by Kevin McCauley /

The 2018 Mazda CX-3, stood tall, beating out three very tough competitors from rival automakers in the “Compact CUV” class. For 2018, the CX-3 received numerous updates, including the addition of Mazda’s exclusive G-Vectoring Control dynamics enhancements, heated steering wheel and added sound insulation. The 2017 CX-5 took home honors in the “Mid-Size CUV” category, and the 2018 CX-9 won the “Full-Size CUV” category. Like its smallest sibling, the CX-9 ponied up with a host of newly luxury amenities and refinements.

Photo by Kevin McCauley /

It should be said that Texas journalists are tough cookies. The truck capital of America, Texas is the back yard of several truck-lovin’ automakers in America and is decidedly not the first place where you’d find these three rodeo champs. But they persevered, with some journalists proclaiming the Mazdas felt nicer and drove better than more expensive vehicles in this metaphorical showdown at the OK Corral.

Photo by Kevin McCauley /

If you’re going to spend your golden nuggets on the best vehicle for your money, you might as well get the Mazda CX-3, CX-5 or CX-9. But hey, that’s our humble opinion—and the opinions of 75 journalists who know a good truck or SUV when they see one.

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