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2009 Mazda Tribute SUV - Overview

Research another Tribute:

$19,730 – $27,635 MSRP

$18,484 – $25,856 Invoice

17 / 24 MPG City/Hwy

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Power Circle Ratings

Overall Quality 2.0

Overall Performance and Design 3.0

Ratings data for all body styles and trim levels within a particular model family are aggregated when calculating the model's overall Power Circle Rating.
2009 Mazda Tribute SUV

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Overview

What Changed for 2009:

  • New 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine
  • New 2.5-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine with Atkinson-cycle combustion on HEV models
  • Improved 3.0-liter V-6 engine
  • New 6-speed automatic transmission
  • Easy Fuel capless fueling system
  • Redesigned front and rear seats
  • Touring and Grand Touring receive standard steering wheel audio controls
  • Grand Touring gets satellite radio, power sunroof as standard
  • New exterior colors
Overview
Mazda introduced the Tribute for 2001, an SUV neatly straddling the line between car-based crossovers and traditional truck-based utilities. Equipped with good ground clearance, the Tribute offers more off-road capability than most of its compact SUV competitors. Mazda says the Tribute is designed for buyers seeking "traditional, go-anywhere rugged styling with Mazda's trademark Zoom-Zoom performance attitude." Though the Tribute received significant updates for 2008 , for 2009 it gets further improvements including new powertrains and redesigned seats. The standard 4-cylinder engine is new, larger than before, more powerful, and more fuel efficient, while the available V-6 engine is improved to offer added power and efficiency. The Mazda Tribute is a version of the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner, both of which share its underlying engineering, powertrains and platform.

All 2009 Mazda Tributes are equipped with standard front-wheel drive (2WD), with a four-wheel-drive (4WD) system optional. Warranty coverage is for 3 years/36,000 miles, including roadside assistance coverage.

Model Lineup
Like most of the rest of the models in Mazda's U.S. lineup, the 2009 Tribute is available in "i" and "s" versions, with the former denoting the 4-cylinder variant and the latter signifying the V-6 models. The Tribute i and Tribute s are available in Sport, Touring and Grand Touring trim. Mazda also sells the Tribute HEV, a hybrid model that can travel as fast as 25 miles per hour on battery power alone, according to Mazda. The Tribute HEV is sold in Touring and Grand Touring trim,

Standard equipment on all 2009 Mazda Tributes includes fog lamps; air conditioning; CD player; remote keyless entry; power mirrors, locks and windows; and cruise control. Touring trim adds a roof rack, 6-way power-adjustable driver's seat, overhead console, steering wheel audio controls, 6-disc CD changer, and a cargo area cover. The Grand Touring includes heated mirrors, automatic headlamps, power moonroof, leather seating, electrochromic rearview mirror, EasyFuel capless fuel-filler system, and more.

Powertrain
Three different powerplants are available for the 2009 Mazda Tribute. All "i" models feature Mazda's new 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine rated at 171 hp and 171 lb.-ft. of torque. EPA fuel-economy estimates are 22 mpg city/28 mpg highway for the 4-cylinder with 2WD and the standard 5-speed manual transmission. The automatic will net 20 mpg city/28 mpg highway. The "s" models with the larger 3.0-liter V-6 engine produce 240 hp and 223 lb.-ft. of torque. EPA fuel-economy estimates are 18 mpg city/26 mpg highway when matched to the standard 6-speed automatic transmission.

The Tribute HEV is powered by an all-new, Atkinson-cycle, 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine assisted by a 70-kilowatt electric motor for a combined 177 hp. The Tribute HEV is what is known as a "full" hybrid, meaning it can be powered by the battery pack alone, and in this case up to 25 mph, according to Mazda. EPA fuel-economy estimates for the Tribute HEV are 34 mpg city/31 mpg highway with front drive, and 29 mpg city/27 mpg highway with all-wheel drive. (Note: Most "full" hybrid vehicles offer better fuel economy in city driving cycles.) The standard transmission for the HEV is a continuously variable transmission (CVT).

Safety
The 2009 Mazda Tribute includes six standard air bags: driver and front passenger frontal and side-impact air bags, and side curtain air bags with rollover protection. Dynamic stability control, roll stability control and traction control are standard on all non-hybrid models.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has crash-tested the Mazda Tribute, resulting in frontal-impact ratings of 4-star driver/5-star passenger, and side-impact ratings of 5-star front seat/5-star rear seat. The Tribute's rollover rating was 3 stars for both 2WD and 4WD models. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) rated the 2009 Mazda Tribute as a "Top Safety Pick" with "Good" ratings in frontal offset, side-impact and rear-impact crash tests.

Technology
Mazda's 4WD system includes Active Torque Control coupeing (ATCC). Optional on all Tribute models with an automatic transmission, ATCC uses a computer to monitor the engine, wheel speeds and transmission. If the system predicts that traction is about to be lost, up to half the engine's power is automatically transferred between the front and rear wheels for optimal grip. Unlike most mechanical 4WD systems, Mazda claims, ATCC is able to predict wheelspin-preventing it from happening in the first place.

The Tribute HEV's hybrid powertrain teams an Atkinson Cycle 4-cylinder gasoline engine to a 70-kilowatt electric motor powered by a 330-volt nickel metal hydride battery pack located under the rear cargo floor. The Tribute can operate on the battery pack when coasting to a stop, when sitting at a red light or in stalled traffic, and when lightly accelerating up to 25 mph. If more rapid acceleration is desired, Mazda says the Tribute HEV feels like it has a 200-hp V-6 engine under the hood. Regenerative braking and an electronic continuously variable transmission constantly capture and convert kinetic energy to recharge the battery pack.

Available Trims for the 2009 Mazda Tribute SUV

  Transmission MSRP Engine City/Hwy MPG
i Sport (M5) 5 speed manual $19,730 171-hp / 2.5L 4-cyl 22/28
i Touring (A6) 6 speed automatic $22,935 171-hp / 2.5L 4-cyl 20/28
s Sport (A6) 6 speed automatic $23,055 240-hp / 3.0L 6-cyl 18/26
s Touring (A6) 6 speed automatic $24,200 240-hp / 3.0L 6-cyl 18/26
i Grand Touring (A6) 6 speed automatic $24,620 171-hp / 2.5L 4-cyl 20/28
s Grand Touring (A6) 6 speed automatic $25,885 240-hp / 3.0L 6-cyl 18/26

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