Vehicle Overview
The Mazda Tribute, a sibling to the Mercury Mariner and Ford Escape, got a significant exterior and interior face-lift for 2008. For 2009, Mazda makes a slew of mechanical changes that could improve performance and efficiency. New inline-four-cylinder and V-6 engines are available in the Sport, Touring and Grand Touring trim levels; a hybrid model is listed elsewhere in the Cars.com Research section. The Tribute seats five, and its competitors include the Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V and Saturn Vue.

New for 2009
The Tribute receives new four-cylinder and V-6 engines, a new six-speed automatic transmission, and redesigned front and rear seats.

Exterior
The outside of the Tribute didn't get as dramatic a face-lift as the Escape did for 2008. The grille lost its crossbar and the Mazda logo was moved up. The 2009 Tribute gets a capless refueling system that's supposed to make refueling easier. It's 174.9 inches long, which is shorter than its competitors, and 71.1 inches wide, about the same as the RAV4, CR-V and Vue.
  • Standard 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Standard fog lights
  • Standard power mirrors
  • Standard automatic headlights
  • Optional heated mirrors (standard on Grand Touring)
  • Optional power moonroof (standard on Grand Touring)


Interior
The Tribute has seating for five, and there's about 99 cubic feet of passenger space, which is less than the RAV4 and CR-V but more than the Vue. The Tribute has a 60/40-split folding rear seat. With the rear seat up, the Tribute has nearly 30 cubic feet of storage space, equal to the Vue but less than the RAV-4 and CR-V. When the rear seat is down, cargo space increases to 66 cubic feet. The rear window opens independent of the liftgate.
  • Standard air conditioning
  • Standard cruise control
  • Standard power windows and locks
  • Available cloth- or leather-trimmed seating
  • Available heated front seats (standard on Grand Touring)
  • Available satellite radio (standard on Grand Touring)


Under the Hood
Tribute buyers get the choice of two engines, both of which have been upgraded. A manual transmission is standard on the base model, and other models come with a standard six-speed automatic transmission, which is available on the base model.
  • 171-horsepower, 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 171 pounds-feet of torque
  • 240-hp, 3.0-liter V-6 with 223 pounds-feet of torque
  • Five-speed manual transmission (base)
  • Six-speed automatic transmission
  • Front- or all-wheel drive


Safety
Safety equipment includes:
  • Standard front, side-impact and side curtain airbags
  • Standard antilock braking system with electronic brake force distribution
  • Standard electronic stability system