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2013 Mazda CX-9


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The revised CX-9 follows on company’s hot streak of stylish new models like the Mazda3 and Mazda6 sedan. New LED lights and a slinky Kodo grille revamp the face of Mazda ’s largest and most expensive model.

The seven-seater CX-9 carries over its previous 3.7-liter V-6 in front or AWD configurations. Paired to the crossover’s singing engine is a premium Aisin six-speed automatic with sport and manual modes. A 60 mph sprint time in the mid 7 second range shows off the CX-9’s impressive chassis design – even without the SkyActiv banner that helps build buzz around the smaller CX-5 .

Refined but sporty damping helps this full-size Mazda crossover to be quite competitive in the $35,000 large crossover segment, and the new gearstick design is a classy touch.

Mazda is firmly in touch with premium buyer needs by the looks of the interior, and the CX-9’s revised cabin maintains the stylish vertical accent bars up the sides of the center stack. Touchscreen technology and rear-seat movies are offered in the plush Mazda CX-9, but what are its key advantages over the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander ?

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2013 Mazda CX-9, including the features and pricing by trim level and a large photo gallery of the new styling.

Exterior

Mazda CX-9

The CX-9’s new nose is a beautiful showcase of Mazda’s new design language, with a full-frame dark grille that meets the hood on its top edge. Along the bottom edge and into the headlight LED, the CX-9 has a 3D piece of brightwork to accent this bold design. As the chrome trim accent extends outward into the lamp graphic, it traces a line in white LEDs to the main projector ball. Bi-xenons are optional and also bring a circular LED halo around the main bulb. The effect of the grille and lighting synergy is best observed with the lights on, but noticeable with them off as well thanks to classy internal light graphics.

The facelift effectively relaunches the CX-9’s premium lines without many changes to the profile. Out back, a new raised LED taillight design mirrors the front lights. There is a ball of brake light and an arcing line toward the “flying M” Mazda wing badge. The CX-9 looks best with the 20-inch wheels that come on the top Grand Touring trim, which also bring halogen fog lights up front.

The CX-9’s new face is perhaps even more noticeable in the base Sport trim, where the lack of a front fog light actually highlights the shapely new bumper air vent.

The CX-9 is still quite handsome and wears a new generation of quality metallic paints. Some Mazda owners have complained about long-term Mazda paint quality, but the brilliant new finishes seem well above what the firm could deliver until the mid-2000s.

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Exterior Dimensions:

Wheelbase (in.) 113.2
Length (in.) 200.6
Width (in.) 76.2
Height (in.) 68
Track - Front (in.) 65.1
Track - Rear (in.) 64.7
Weight (Pounds) 4317 FWD, 4552 AWD
Drag Coefficient .34, Est

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Exterior Features By Trim Level:

CX-9 Trim Level SportTouringGrand Touring
Halogen headlights StandardStandardNA
Bi-Xenon High-Intensity-Discharge (HID) headlights with auto on/off feature NANAStandard
Auto-off headlights NAStandardNA
LED daytime running lights NANAStandard
Halogen fog lights NAPackage OptionStandard
Variable-intermittent windshield wipers StandardStandardStandard
Rain-sensing windshield wipers NANAStandard
Intermittent rear wiper/washer StandardStandardStandard
Power sliding-glass moonroof with one-touch-open feature and interior sunshade NAPackage OptionPackage Option
Dual power side mirrors StandardStandardNA
Dual power side mirrors with side marker turn-signal lights NANAStandard
Mirror memory function and "tilt-in-reverse" option NANAStandard
Heated side mirrors Package OptionStandardStandard
Body-color door handles StandardStandardNA
Chrome door handles NANAStandard
Power open/close rear liftgate NAPackage OptionStandard
In-glass antenna StandardStandardStandard
Rear privacy glass StandardStandardStandard
Black roof molding StandardStandardStandard
Roof-mounted spoiler StandardStandardStandard
Dual exhaust outlets StandardStandardStandard
Wheels & Tires
18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels StandardStandardNA
20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels NANAStandard
P245/60 R18 all-season radial tires StandardStandardNA
P245/50 R20 all-season radial tires NANAStandard
Temporary spare tire StandardStandardStandard

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Optional Exterior Features:

  • Clear Film, Front - Paint Protection ($595)
  • Rear Bumper Guard, Stainless Steel ($150)
  • Roof Rails ($250)
  • Remote Engine Start ($350)
  • Splash Guard Front / Rear ($150)
  • Towing Receiver Hitch for non-towing prep vehicles - FWD without 2TP ($425): Offers 2,000-pound towing capacity
  • Towing Receiver Hitch 3,500-pound towing capacity and Class II w/wiring harness - AWD, FWD with 2TP ($425)
  • Wheel Locks ($55)

Interior

Mazda CX-9

The CX-9’s cabin is still arguably the best offered by Mazda, with visibly excellent build quality and materials that are a notch above VW. The layout is thoroughly ergonomic, with logical placements for the controls and a very reachable vertical dash stack. The twin pillars arc forward and toward the windshield, a design merit that helps hide the CX-9’s raked glass and people-mover layout. A wide center console and huge amounts of shoulder room mean the CX-9 is up there with the X5 for commanding front cabin feel. The CX-9’s front seats get a lot nicer as the trim level rises, which is something worth considering to get additional movement for the front passenger seat.

In back, huge doors and a large handle on the second row makes getting in the third possible in a snap. The third row is par for the class above, with roominess and quality seats like the Acura MDX. The second row offers great legroom and a good view forward, but the sporty ride in more noticeable back there than up front.

Equipment levels are phenomenal but each trim level comes with its own unique options packages, making the perfect configuration a little tricky for buyers to price in advance.

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Interior Dimensions:

Front Seating Capacity 2
Middle Seating Capacity 3
Rear Seating Capacity 2
Headroom - Front (in.) 39.6
Headroom - Middle (in.) 39
Headroom - Rear (in.) 35.4
Legroom - Front (in.) 40.9
Legroom - Middle (in.) 39.8
Legroom - Rear (in.) 32.4
Shoulder Room - Front (in.) 59.4
Shoulder Room - Middle (in.) 58.7
Shoulder Room - Rear (in.) 56.9
Hip Room - Front (in.) 56.5
Hip Room - Middle (in.) 56
Hip Room - Rear (in.) 43.7
EPA Cargo Volume - All Seats Up (cubic-feet) 17.2
EPA Cargo Volume - 3rd-Row Seat Folded (cubic-feet) 48.3
EPA Cargo Volume - 2nd And 3rd Row Folded Down (cubic-feet) 100.7

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Interior Features By Trim Level:

CX-9 Trim Level SportTouringGrand Touring
Three-Zone Automatic Climate Control StandardStandardStandard
Power windows with front one-touch down/up feature StandardStandardStandard
Power door locks with 2-stage unlocking feature StandardStandardStandard
Speed-sensing auto door locks StandardStandardStandard
Cruise control with steering-wheel-mounted controls StandardStandardStandard
Rearview camera NAStandardStandard
Rear backup sensors NAStandardStandard
Remote keyless entry with retractable key StandardStandardNA
Mazda Advanced Keyless Entry & Start System NAPackage OptionStandard
Auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink NANAStandard
Illuminated entry StandardStandardStandard
Illuminated visor vanity mirrors StandardStandardStandard
Tilt & telescopic steering wheel StandardStandardStandard
Interior illumination - front map lights (2), dome light (1), cargo area (1), ignition switch (except GT models), glove compartment, steering wheel switches and driver’s side power window switches StandardStandardStandard
Delayed off interior lights (map and dome) NAStandardStandard
Height-adjustable front shoulder-belt anchors StandardStandardStandard
12-volt power outlets (3) StandardStandardStandard
Remote fuel-door release StandardStandardStandard
Rear window defogger with timer StandardStandardStandard
Storage
Front center console storage with dual cup holders StandardStandardStandard
Overhead sunglasses holder StandardStandardStandard
Front door storage pockets with bottle holders StandardStandardStandard
Front seatback pocket StandardStandardStandard
2nd-row center armrest with cup holders StandardStandardNA
2nd-row center armrest with storage and cup holders NANAStandard
Rear door bottle holders StandardStandardStandard
Cargo area under-floor storage StandardStandardStandard
Seating & Trim
7-passenger seating StandardStandardStandard
6-way manual driver’s seat StandardNANA
8-way power driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar support Package OptionStandardStandard
4-way manual front passenger seat StandardNANA
4-way power front passenger seat NAStandardStandard
60/40 split fold-down 2nd-row seatback with tilt and slide feature StandardStandardStandard
50/50 split fold-down 3rd-row seatback StandardStandardStandard
Driver’s seat memory NANAStandard
Heated front seats Package OptionStandardStandard
Cloth-trimmed seats StandardNANA
Leather-trimmed seats (1st- and 2nd-row outboard seating positions) NAStandardStandard
Leather-wrapped steering wheel StandardStandardStandard
Leather-wrapped shift knob StandardStandardStandard
Power window switch panel - Black StandardStandardStandard
Full carpeting - Black StandardStandardStandard
Piano Black interior accent trim StandardStandardNA
Bordeaux interior accent trim NANAStandard
Carpet floor mats StandardStandardStandard
Audio & Navigation
AM/FM/CD/MP3-compatible stereo with 6 speakers StandardStandardStandard
5.8" color touchscreen display StandardStandardStandard
HD Radio StandardStandardStandard
Pandora internet radio connectivity StandardStandardStandard
SMS text message audio delivery and reply StandardStandardStandard
Bose Centerpoint Surround Sound System with AudioPilot, AM/FM/CD/MP3-compatible stereo and 10 speakers NAPackage OptionPackage Option
Bose Centerpoint, Surround Sound System with AudioPilot AM/FM/CD/MP3-compatible stereo with 11 speakers, 9-inch rear seat entertainment system with DVD player, 115V power outlet and game port NANAPackage Option
Auxiliary-audio input jack (NA with Rear Entertainment System) StandardStandardStandard
USB audio input port StandardStandardStandard
SiriusXM Satellite Radio-compatible audio system StandardStandardStandard
SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 4-month trial subscription Port Installed Option/ Accessory/ Package OptionPort Installed Option/ Accessory/ Package OptionPort Installed Option/ Accessory/ Package Option
Steering-wheel-mounted audio controls StandardStandardStandard
Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio streaming capability StandardStandardStandard
Navigation system NAPackage OptionPackage Option
Rearview back-up camera NAStandardStandard

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Optional Interior Packages By Trim Level:

  • CX-9 Sport - Power Driver’s Seat with Heated Front Seats & Mirrors ($690): 8-way power driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar support, Heated cloth seats, Heated side mirrors

CX-9 Touring - Technology Package ($3,000)

  • Power sliding-glass moonroof with one-touch-open feature and interior sunshade
  • Bose Centerpoint Surround Sound System with AudioPilot, AM/FM/CD/MP3-compatible stereo with 10 speakers
  • SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 4-month trial subscription
  • Halogen fog lamps
  • Mazda Advanced Keyless Entry and Start System
  • Navigation System
  • Power open/close rear liftgate

CX-9 Grand Touring - Technology Package ($2,435)

  • Power sliding glass moonroof with interior sunshade
  • Navigation System
  • Bose Centerpoint Surround Sound System with AudioPilot, AM/FM/CD/MP3-compatible stereo with 10 speakers
  • SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 4-month trial subscription

Rear-Seat Entertainment System with Bose Audio and Sirius Package - not available with Grand Touring Technology Package ($3,245)

  • DVD player with 9-inch screen
  • Navigation System
  • Bose Centerpoint with AudioPilot and 11 speakers
  • SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 4-month trial subscription
  • 115-volt power plug and game port
  • Towing Prep Package - FWD only as is standard on AWD models ($100): Heavy-duty transmission oil cooler and radiator fan, Revised engine control module

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Optional Interior Accessories:

  • Cargo Mat ($85)
  • Cargo Net50
  • Cargo Tray 125
  • All-Weather Floor Mats 125
  • Compass, Homelink, Auto Dimming Mirror for Sport, Touring ($295)
  • SIRIUS Satellite Radio with 4-Month Subscription ($525)

Drivetrain, Suspension and Brakes

Mazda CX-9

The CX-9 is a front or all-wheel-drive crossover powered by a 3.7-liter V-6 making 273 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque. All that power and a six-speed automatic trans is enough to hustle the large crossover to 60 mph in just 7.4 seconds. While admirable, the CX-9’s performance is not at the same level as the Ford Explorer Sport , whose similar engine runs twin turbochargers (but is 400 pounds heavier).

The AWD option is an unobtrusive and mileage-focused automatic system, but does include a good level of default torque split presets.

The CX-9 is respectable in terms of mileage, as the front-drive model turns in a 17/24 EPA rating and the AWD variant drops to just 16/22.

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Mechanical Details:

Engine Size and Type 3.7-liter 24-valve V-6 With Chain-Driven DOHC And VVT
Peak power (Horsepower) 273 @ 6250
Peak torque (Pound-feet) 270 @ 4250
Transmission 6-Speed Auto
0-to-60 mph 7.4 seconds
Top Speed (mph) 130, Est
EPA Fuel Economy MPG (City/Combined/Highway) 17/NA/24 FWD, 16/NA/22 AWD

Safety

The CX-9 is a sure-footed and responsive crossover with a comprehensive safety program and a Good rating from IIHS. The CX-9 earned four stars from the NHTSA but lacks active safety technology beyond its backup camera, parking alerts and blind-spot alerts.

2013 Mazda CX-9 – Standard Safety Features:

  • Advanced front air bags with seat belt-use, passenger-weight and driver’s seat-position sensors
  • Front side-impact air bags and side-impact air curtains‡ with rollover protection
  • 3-point seat belts for all seating positions
  • Front seat-belt pre-tensioners with force limiters
  • Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) w/ Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD)
  • Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Traction Control System (TCS)
  • Roll Stability Control (RSC)
  • Triple H body construction
  • Side-impact door beams
  • Collapsible steering column
  • Foldaway brake pedal assembly
  • Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM) System
  • E911 automatic emergency notification
  • Rear backup sensors
  • Engine-immobilizer anti-theft system, Alarm system, Keyless remote panic button (on key fob)
  • Tire-Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • LATCH child-safety-seat anchors

Pricing

Mazda CX-9
Mazda CX-9 2013 MSRP
CX-9 FWD Sport $29,785
CX-9 FWD Touring $32,230
CX-9 FWD Grand Touring $34,785
CX-9 AWD Sport $31,375
CX-9 AWD Touring $33,820
CX-9 AWD Grand Touring $36,375

Competition

Honda Pilot

Honda Pilot

The Honda Pilot is a big challenge for the CX-9, because its boxy looks promise a more butch drive and a larger rear cabin. In reality, the Pilot’s dated engine and transmission mean it struggles to keep pace with the Mazda. There is some truth to the perception that the Honda is bigger in the back, but not enough to sway a purchase one way or the other.

Toyota Highlander

Toyota Highlander

The Highlander is new for 2013 with a bold new nose that will hopefully make this seven-seat Toyota crossover less forgettable. The firm’s smooth V-6 powers the front wheels with similar stats to the CX-9, but lacks the Mazda’s lithe chassis balance and good handling feel.

Conclusion

Mazda CX-9

The CX-9 makes its mark with great pricing, a sporty driving enthusiasm and interior build quality that rivals many luxury brands. Despite the Mazda Mazda needing a generous helping of options to get past $36,000, at that level it is still one of the more affordable large seven-seaters out there.

You would not know that by the slinky and stylish new grille and front lights. The LED blade and LED ring add some real beauty to this practical segment’s dull shapes.

For family drivers who want a crossover with seven seats, a luxury cabin and handling confidence, the stylish Mazda CX-9 is a top choice for less than $36,000.

Category RatingDetails
Driving B+Sporty Driving Shows Off Best Of CX-9’s BMW-like Ride/Handling
Performance BStill A Fantastic Engine And Smart Automatic Combo
Look B+New Grille And LEDs Look Great Next To Honda Pilot’s Lights
Value AExcellent Value In Lower Trims, Which Keep Same Mechanical Package
Overall B+A Family Crossover That Dad Won’t Mind Driving
LOVE IT
  • New grille design’s smooth flow outward into headlight is elegant
  • Big 20-inch wheels from CX-9 GT look good
  • Cabin refinements update a functional but premium layout
LEAVE IT
  • Cabin updates are pretty minimal, with a navigation touchscreen that is a few sizes too small
  • Performance sprints show Explorer Sport is faster with similar mileage
  • Active safety tech is popular in this segment, so no front crash warning is a demerit

Press Release

Mazda CX-9

Redesigned Mid-Size SUV Showcases KODO Design, New Technologies

Mazda CX-9

Unmistakably Mazda, the 2013 CX-9 has evolved into a dramatic yet refined design, like the grown-up in an expensive suit but sans expensive tie. Available in three trim levels – Sport, Touring and Grand Touring – the CX-9 is not one to discriminate and offers all consumers a mid-size SUV that delivers on dynamics and content as well as provides all occupants a front-row seat to sophistication and comfort.

Mazda CX-9

Emotion-Evoking Exterior

The KODO design language exudes aggression and grace, energy and poise, strength and elegance. Mazda’s most expressive design theme yet, KODO captures the fluidity of movement – while standing still. The unfiltered refinement of the 2013 CX-9 further vocalizes this with the precisely etched features in its new front-end and rear-facing appeal. From the slight snarl of the five-point front grille and its chrome outline that points deftly and defined into eagle-eyed headlamps to the commanding calm of the rear taillights overseeing a masculine landscape that develops into the redesigned robust plateau of the rear bumper, no one said utilitarian had to be ugly.

The fog lights also have been redesigned to sync with the KODO-esque attributes of the front fascia as have the dual rear exhaust pipes, changing from a lean trapezoid to a fog light-matching round shape. The overall stature of the CX-9 continues to be one of prominence and luxury with strong 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels wrapped in P245/60R18 all-season tires fitting perfectly under brawny fender arches. Optional 20-inch aluminum alloy wheels dusted in a satin chrome finish are paired with Bridgestone Dueler H/L 400 P245/50R20 all-season rubbers.

The steeply raked windshield further accentuates the vehicle’s agile ability and continues the course into an expansive roofline that ostensibly dares you to load it with any amount of rooftop cargo. Any number of optional roof rack systems can be had courtesy of the standard roof rails. The body colored rear spoiler? That’s standard, too. The large-view side and rear windows form an open and modern greenhouse as well as provide outward visibility from all seating positions.

The 2013 CX-9 is available in six glosses including Crystal White Pearl, Liquid Silver, Brilliant Black, Dolphin Gray and two new shades in Zeal Red and Meteor Gray.

Mazda CX-9

Highly Versatile, Well Crafted Interior

Under the CX-9’s sleek exterior is an interior with the mettle to impress consumers who expect nothing less than spaciousness, functionality and premium content from every SUV on their shopping lists. Sitting on a 113.2-inch wheelbase, the CX-9 has a lot of length for design minds to play with and with an overall width of 76.2 inches a roomy interior for seven adults to reap the rewards. Its organized and efficient interior layout also is replete with rich touch points.

Without a moonroof, passenger volume is a generous 139.4 cubic feet. Headroom is top hat worthy at 39.6 inches in the front row with 39.0 and 35.4 inches available in the second and third rows, respectively. When moonroof-equipped, the skylight reduces the space by 1.7 cubic feet to a still comfortable 137.7 cubic feet. The front row features a headache-free 38.4 inches of headroom. The second- and third-row dimensions remain unchanged. Legroom is measured at a stretchable 40.9 inches in the front row, 39.8 inches in the second and 32.4 inches in the third.

For versatility points, the 60/40-split second row easily accommodates three passengers and offers approximately five inches of fore-and-aft travel in addition to a reclining backrest. In the 50/50-split third row, seating position and legroom are among the leaders in the mid-size SUV segment, both in numbers and real-world comfort. Access into the third row also is effortless with nearly 26 inches of ingress space between a folded second-row seat and the C-pillar.

Mazda CX-9

Extra thought was invested in all the finer functionality details, such as how the seat releases are configured. For example, releasing the second row seat in order to enter the third row requires only one simple hand motion to unlatch the seat and move it forward. Likewise, a clever strap attached behind the third row seat’s backrest serves as both a release for folding the seat down and as a means to pulling it back up.

With all seats occupied, the CX-9 provides 17.2 cubic feet of cargo space, which eclipses many large sedans. Both second and third row seats fold flat to provide up to 100.7 cubic feet of storage space from the rear hatch and up towards the seat backs of the front row.

Sport and Touring models exhibit piano black trim accents while Grand Touring models feature a high-quality Bordeaux throughout the vehicle. Fitted along the door panels and hugging alongside an updated center console, this detail is not overly brash but elegantly subtle. A redesigned leather-wrapped shift knob is standard and provides the palm-perfect fit from park to drive and all the gears in between.

Visibility is important in all lighting situations because the less focused your eyes are on the flash of the dash the more focused you are on the road. Changing from red-on-black to white-on-dark, the panel details are equally readable in the bright of day and without a harsh appearance in the dark of night. In addition, intuitive operational switches and knobs abound. Some controls are repetitive, such as radio and phone operations, so as to offer consumers more choices in adjusting vehicle settings to their preference rather than they change their natural habits to adapt to the vehicle.

A leather-wrapped steering wheel, which offers tilt and telescopic functions as well as audio and cruise controls, is standard. Also standard are anti-pinch power windows with a one-touch automatic up/down feature for front row windows.

Mazda CX-9

With the “hard” surfaces of the CX-9’s interior leaning toward easy-to-use functionality, the “soft” areas lean toward spoiled comfort. Standard on Sport models is a sporting black cloth interior while moving up the line to a Touring or Grand Touring invites leather-trimmed upholstery in either black or sand hues, the latter being new for 2013. The black leather trim is highlighted with black suede inserts and features red contrast stitching. All leather seats offer two heat settings. Plush and welcoming in any seat, the front row offers added seat bolstering.

Make Connections

A 5.8-inch multi-information display (MID) screen is new for 2013 and standard on all trim levels. All-new infotainment features include HD Radio™ Technology and Pandora®. HD Radio is a subscription-free digital AM and FM broadcast radio service which provides crystal-clear sound, on-screen information and additional programming choices via HD2 and HD3 channels. Pandora offers personalized stations based on the input of a single “seed” (i.e. favorite band, song or genre) and continually customizes its playlist using musicological “DNA” and listener feedback.

When music from a personal device is preferred, MP3 players and smartphones can be connected via the Bluetooth® hands-free phone and audio system. This allows all information and folders to display and be controlled via the MID. A USB connection port offers an alternative for users, such as infrequent passengers, who do not want to connect their devices via Bluetooth. All the aforementioned systems, including an auxiliary jack, are standard.

Mazda CX-9

The Bluetooth system itself has been updated from the previous CX-9 model year. Version 1.4 of the Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP) now allows users to repeat tracks, shuffle tracks and select folders. The speech recognition functionality also has been significantly improved and features a new microphone with enhanced noise-control processing and high-performance wind-noise suppression processing. Initiating phone calls using voice recognition is simplified and contacts can be saved into the directory with a single operation. The directory can now hold up to 1,000 contacts, a figure up significantly from the previous version’s maximum allotment of 32.

A new standard feature for 2013 is audio message receipt and delivery. When a smartphone is connected, Short Message Service (SMS) messages can be received and shown on the MID. The system can then articulate the messages as well as allow users to send replies using fixed phrases.

Available is a TomTom technology-based in-dash navigation system featuring premium North American maps, advanced lane guidance, intuitive voice recognition and real-time traffic. The navigation module communicates with the Sanyo display head unit in the CX-9 via a USB interface and utilizes an SD card for storing map data. The SD card feature allows consumers to input customized maps as well as regularly update TomTom mapping content and software via their home computer.

All of these auditory features pump their sound waves through a standard high-quality six-speaker sound system matched with an AM/FM/CD head unit. A premium 10-speaker Bose® Centerpoint® Surround Sound System with AudioPilot® is available on Touring and Grand Touring models with a higher-end 11-speaker Bose sound system available on Grand Touring models only. Sirius Satellite Radio with a complimentary four-month subscription is an option for all trim levels.

These ease-of-operation updates for telephone, navigation and music systems provide even greater convenience for users and means that less time is focused elsewhere than the road ahead.

Mazda CX-9

The Power of Engineering

A more than potent MZR 3.7-liter V-6 engine powers the 2013 CX-9, making even the most harried drives seem like a stroll along the beach. Its peak power of 273 horsepower at 6,250 rpm offers explosive acceleration and passing performance. The torque curve keeps 250 lb-ft at 3,000 to 6,000 rpm and peaks at 270 lb-ft at 4,250 rpm.

The 60-degree short-stroke V-6 is state-of-the art throughout. Advanced features include a die-cast aluminum block with cast-in iron cylinder liners and aluminum cylinder heads for minimizing vehicle weight. The valve train includes chain-drive dual overhead camshafts for minimal maintenance, four valves-per-cylinder with direct acting bucket-type actuators and variable intake valve timing. The throttle is electronically controlled for on-the-spot responsiveness.

Two close-coupled catalytic converters clean the exhaust without hindering power. Computer-aided engineering analysis was used extensively to configure the cylinder block casting, to shape intake and exhaust ports and to design the high-volume exhaust system fitted with three large mufflers. Very low back pressure is one of the reasons why the power curve is still ascending at the 6,500-rpm redline. In addition, the forged-steel crankshaft is fitted with induction-hardened journals and a full complement of counterweights. Engineering details also extend to a roller-chain cam-drive sprocket lined with rubber for added noise reduction.

Mazda CX-9

The 2013 CX-9 utilizes an Aisin-supplied six-speed Sport AT automatic transmission with a manual mode as standard equipment. Broad ratios maximize flexibility by providing enthusiastic launching with quiet cruising speeds. The top two gears are both overdrive ratios. This is how the vehicle is able to offer both excellent acceleration and fuel economy. A manual transmission is not available on CX-9.

Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard on all trim levels with Mazda’s Active Torque All-Wheel-Drive (AWD) available as an option. This AWD system rapidly adjusts to changing traction needs by monitoring wheel slippage, steering angle, yaw rate, lateral acceleration and available driveline torque. In normal driving situations, 100 percent of the driving torque is delivered to the front wheels. During aggressive acceleration, or when one front wheel is on the verge of slipping, a controlled percentage of the available torque is directed to the rear axle.

A power take-off device integrated with the vehicle’s transaxle spins a drive shaft attached to an active coupling built into the rear differential. Commanded by a control module, the servo-controlled multi-plate coupling can route from zero and up to 50 percent of the available torque to the rear wheels.

Fuel economy for FWD models is EPA-estimated at 17 city/24 highway miles per gallon (MPG). Models optioned with the AWD system are expected to achieve 16 city/22 highway MPG, per the EPA.

Mazda CX-9



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