Mazda at this year’s Auto Show in Los Angeles unveiled all-new CX-9 three-row crossover, and introduced a new SKYACTIV-G 2.5T engine. The Japanese manufacturer has successfully applied the stylish Kodo design on another vehicle from its lineup – the largest SUV in the range.
Developed primarily for the North American market, the new CX-9 took over the characteristic front fascia that features a large grille and thinly elongated headlights, from its smaller brothers (CX-5 and CX-3). The rear of the vehicle with gently flowing surfaces, rounded fenders, and the dynamic lines also clearly indicates that it is a high-end model of Mazda’s new-generation.
Although is 30mm (1.2 inch) shorter than its predecessor (5.065mm), the three-row crossover SUV has a larger wheelbase by 55 mm (2.2 inches), which contributions for additional passenger leg room as well as entry to and exit from the rear. At the same time, the weight of the car is also reduced up to 130 kg (287 pounds), depending on the model.
Besides its pretty face, the CX-9 also introduces Mazda’s Skyactiv-G 2.5T turbocharged unit. This four-cylinder engine is the most powerful engine in Mazda’s offer, and develops 420 Nm (310 lb-ft) of torque at a low 2,000 rpm and 250 hp at 5,000 rpm on 93-octane gasoline. On 87-octane, that number drops to 227 hp. The engine is based naturally aspirated version that is installed into the Mazda CX-5 and Mazda6. Using Mazda’s motto rightsizing, like other Skyactiv unit, instead of today’s popular downsizing (reduction of working capacity and number of cylinders), this engine does not feature the typical disadvantages of turbocharged engines, such as the so-called turbo hole, and often high fuel consumption in real driving conditions. Power is transmitted via a six-speed automatic, paired to a front or with the company’s i-Activ all-wheel-drive system.
The interior is equally attractive and features higher-quality materials, such as Nappa leather and a combination of black and metallic trim. There’s also LED accent lighting and a seven- or eight-inch MAZDA CONNECT infotainment system, redesigned front seats, 12-speaker Bose audio system as an option, while a high-tech instrument cluster with a 4.6-inch TFT display mounted between the gauges also can be ordered as an option. The cabin is also significantly quieter than its predecessor as Mazda used thicker windows and 53 lbs (24 kg) of sounding deadening mats.
The Japanese company plans to sell around 50,000 units annually, and is estimated that approximately 80% will be sold in North America. Unfortunately, this model will not be available on the European market.