Updated styling and equipment enhancements across the lineup that include a new turbo-four borrowed from the CX-9 only confirm our opinion that - despite the fact that the new engine is mated exclusively to an automatic transmission, while the clumsy infotainment system lacks Android Auto and Apple CarPlay - the 2018 Mazda Mazda6 remains the best-handling and best-looking sedan in the midsize segment.
The 2018 Lexus RX 350L, all-new to the lineup this year, offers a wide range of standard advanced safety features along with increased cargo space compared to the regular model and a standard third row – a feature not heretofore available. But fuel economy remains average, adding options can quickly boost the price, while its eye-catching design isn't for everyone.
The 2018 Mazda CX-5 marks the first major re-design of the brand's best-selling vehicle - with a slicker design inside and out, a more fuel efficient engine, additional safety equipment, and class-above features at every price point. But it's held back by a clumsy infotainment interface, mediocre cargo volume, and a stiff ride with too much road and wind noise on models with larger wheels.
The all-new 2018 Toyota Camry Hybrid gets a crisp new design, improved fuel economy, and an abundance of active safety features. But its lower seat height may lack appeal in a market that's shifting to crossovers, while the SE trim is not what we'd call "sporty."