The Mazda MX-30’s rear doors are a cool tribute to the RX-8, but what’s the point?
Mazda just launched its first all-electric vehicle, the MX-30, at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show, and it’s quite an exotic crossover in a sea of dull-looking haulers. And that’s mostly because it has tiny, rear-hinged doors like the RX-8, a sports car that Mazda built from 2003 to 2012. Needless to say, it’s a cool feature to have, but it ruins the practicality of the MX-30 and makes me wonder why Mazda went with such a design.
Mazda Debuts Updated CX-8 at Tokyo Motor Show; Still Not Coming to the U.S.
It’s been only two years since it introduced the CX-8 crossover and Mazda already unveiled an updated version at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show. As before, the CX-8, essentially a seven-seat version of the CX-5, remains limited to markets like Japan, Malaysia, China, Australia, and New Zealand and won’t come to the United States. Let’s find out what’s new.
It’s Official: The 2019 Mazda CX-5 Diesel in On Sale In America
Mazda has officially confirmed that it will start selling its first modern diesel in the U.S., and it will come under the hood of its CX-5 crossover. This, all while the manufacturers that have always been very pro-diesel, the Europeans, are now shunning compression-ignition engines and looking for alternatives.
Is This the 2020 Mazda CX-4 That was Teased for the 2019 Geneva Motor Show?
Last week Mazda released a teaser picture showing the shadowy rear end of a new crossover that will break cover at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show in March. The silhouette looks a lot like the new-generation Mazda3, but it’s not yet clear what model we’re dealing with. Now, a pre-production vehicle spotted in China confirms that Mazda is indeed preparing to launch a small crossover based on the Mazda3. But what is it?
Well, we have three scenarios to consider.
Mazda Teases New SUV For Geneva
Just as everyone’s attention is focused on the 2019 Chicago Auto Show, Mazda coyly dropped a teaser photo of a new crossover that will debut at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show this March. Without giving any hints on what this model is, Mazda looks like it’s teasing what we believe is the new CX-4. There’s no indication that this model is actually the CX-4, but the image reveals a model that looks too big to be a CX-3 and too tight to be a CX-5. Whatever it is, Mazda has said that this model will incorporate its modern Kodo design language, and, more importantly, it will be available in the U.S. at some point in the future. The 2019 Geneva Motor Show kicks off on Thursday, March 7, 2019.
2020 Ford Explorer vs 2019 Mazda CX-9
The sleek 2019 Mazda CX-9 SUV is one of the least-obvious rivals of the 2020 sixth-generation Explorer. The two models share nothing in terms of exterior design, and this affects the cabin as well. The Mazda is also only available with only one engine and one transmission, and you can only get it with either FWD or AWD. There’re a lot of options if you’re in the market for a three-row SUV and Ford should take into consideration all of its rivals if it wants to keep topping the sales charts with the latest Explorer. Sure, the Mazda CX-9 isn’t for the same kind of person as the Ford but, size wise, they play ball in the same league so here’s how the two stack up against one another.
2019 Mazda CX-5
Quite frankly, the new 2019 Mazda CX-5 with a turbocharged engine and Signature trim feels like a premium car. It packs the gear of the heavyweights in a body that entails sophistication. Add to this a powerful, sporty brand image that I find more alluring compared with its standard competition, and you have yourself a car so well formed one may consider it over an Audi or a Lexus. Up until the new model year, the Mazda CX-5 did lack a powerful engine, and, quite frankly, some of the gizmos and luxuries one can expect of a car of this stature. 2019 comes to correct these problems with a 2.5-liter, turbocharged engine, a whole lot of standard gear for its top end Signature trim, and a fitting price. That fitting price? Well, you will have to churn out more than $38,000 for the 2019 Mazda CX-5 Signature AWD with a 2.5-liter, turbocharged engine.
Updated Mazda CX-5 Brings Turbo Engine and Luxury Trim
It’s been less than two years since the second-generation CX-5 went into production and Mazda is already rolling out an update. While it’s not exactly a facelift design-wise, the upgrade adds a more powerful turbo engine and two new trims with more premium features. And higher prices obviously.
Best Used 2016 SUV for Fuel Economy
The market trend is quickly shifting from sedans to crossovers and SUVs. However, SUVs have two major cons when compared to their segment counterparts - high retail price and poor fuel economy. Even though they are a practical choice thanks to additional cabin and cargo space, it’s a little difficult for everyone to afford an SUV. So why not go for a used SUV instead? You don’t take the depreciation hit that first owner does, and since SUVs are built to last a lifetime, you can get an almost-new SUV at half the original price.
Now that we’ve planted this seed in your head, let’s have a look at the best used SUVs from 2016 with high fuel efficiency.
2019 Mazda CX-3
The subcompact crossover segment is the fastest growing segment currently. Crossovers are turning out to be the evolved form of sedans, with more and more people opting for cars with raised stance and an SUV look. It looks like Mazda has taken a note of the same and has finally launched the refreshed CX-3, three years after its launch, to rake in a bigger share of the pie. After selling an average of 1500 units per month since its inception, the car was in desperate need of a refresh to give that number a boost. Despite being a bang-for-the-buck car, the CX-3 never brought volumes for Mazda. Can changes for the 2019 model year brighten its fortunes?
2019 Mazda CX-9 With Much More Gear For A Bit More Money
The 2019 Mazda CX-9 received a simple update for the new model year and now comes with more features than ever, slightly changed pricing, and can even be had with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto systems. It is a welcomed update for a car that seems to be perfectly suited for the family tasks of today.
2019 Mazda CX-3
When Mazda introduced the CX-3 for the 2016 model year, it was received quite well on the market thanks to its striking design, attractive interior, and fairly powerful drivetrain. There were a few gripes to be had, though, and that’s why Mazda decided to usher in a mild update just three years into its lifecycle. These updates include new exterior lights, redesigned wheels, updated center console, a new electronic emergency brake, and even new armrests. Mazda even tweaked the CX-3’s SkyActiv engine to squeeze out just a little more power. We’re not sure if the CX-3 will get an official mid-cycle update in the next year or two as previously prescribed but if it doesn’t the update for 2019 should be enough to keep it standing tall until the next-gen model comes into play.
Three Years In, Mazda Trumps the Subcompact Segment with Small Improvements to the CX-3
With strong competition in a cut-throat market comes a need to remain relevant even if it means taking the effort to make excessively minor improvements. And, that’s exactly what Mazda did with the three-year-old CX-3. Mazda started by doing some minor rework to the 2.0-liter SkyActiv powerplant, marginally improving the horsepower and torque. It then followed up by adding some fresh trim accents outside to go with new LED taillights and a new set of 18-inch wheels. Playing the same trump card inside, Mazda has added new materials, revised the seats, and even changed the center console.
Mazda Introduces Virtual Reality Test Drives At U.K. Dealers
Mazda is giving its U.K. customers a chance to wring some zoom zoom out of the new CX-5 on the Longcross test track in Surrey, no helmets required. Sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen, right? Not when the experience happens via virtual reality.
“With virtual reality our aim is to create a sense of oneness with the car through an immersive experience,” says Kim Crawford, Mazda U.K. Marketing Communications Manager. “You literally get a test drive experience on a track, whilst sat inside the all-new Mazda CX-5 without leaving the building.” U.K. residents are encouraged to check out the new tech at four select Mazda shopping centers, including Bullring, Birmingham, August 5th and 6th, Trafford Centre, Manchester, August 12th and 13th, Bluewater, Kent, August 19th and 20th, and Braehead, Glasgow, September 2nd and 3rd. And while the 175-horsepower SUV isn’t exactly the Japanese automaker’s most adrenaline-inducing model on offer, the virtual experience should be a big step up from the normal test drive routine on public roads. Which begs the question – how will technology change the car buying experience in general? Read on for our take.
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2018 Mazda CX-8
In a world where SUVs have pretty much taken over the automotive market, Mazda is actually coming up quite short with its offerings, thanks to its current lineup featuring no more than the CX-3, CX-5, and CX-9. Over in Japan, Mazda’s home market, the offerings are even smaller with just the CX-3 and CX-5 making up the only options available to drive in SUV segment. Well, that latter fact is about to change, as Mazda has now introduced the Mazda CX-8. Essentially a slightly smaller CX-9 (we’re talking about inches here, folks) the CX-8 is designed specifically for the Japanese market, giving it something special from the brand that it helped produce so long ago. It takes on the same styling DNA as it’s taller, foreign sibling, while the power to go is derived from the 2.2-liter Diesel that Mazda has been using since 2012, but upgraded to deliver 140 kW or 187.74 horsepower or about 11 horsepower more than pre-2017 models.
Now, the CX-8 is being billed as an SUV that brings new style and depth to the KODO design language, with new “one of a kind” SUV styling. Well, go ahead and take a deep breath and sit down, because you just been taken for a long, hard ride. Mazda is about as bad as the German three when it comes to tooting its own horn, and the CX-8 is the proof. For the most part, the CX-8 is identical to the CX-9 that we have here in the states. The only real difference is the car’s size, which combines a drop in length of 6.49 inches with a drop in width of 4.76 inches, and a drop in height of just 0.89 inches. But, maybe it isn’t all the same as the CX-9 that you can find here in the States, so let’s take a better look at it to see what all Mazda is working with. Either way, it’s certain to be a plus for the Japanese market – those folks have been needed something larger than that CX-5 for a long time.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2018 Mazda CX-8.
2017 Mazda CX-5
When it was introduced for the 2013 model year, Mazda had high hopes for the CX-5. But, the model has been a major disappointment with sales in 2014 not even hitting the 100,000 mark while models from competitors, like the Honda CR-V, for example, saw much higher numbers to the tune of 350,000 examples sold. The CX-5 was facelifted in 2016, but it still failed to meet expectations, despite having a fair amount of muscle under the hood. Consider the CX-5 isn’t exactly a slouch, it must be the design that turns customers away, so Mazda got to work. It didn’t take long for Mazda to complete the second-gen model, and it made its debut at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show sporting an awesome new body color, G-Vectoring Control, a revamped body shell, slightly wider stance, and the addition of Mazda’s SKYACTIV, 2.2-liter diesel engine as an option for U.S. buyers.
The hardest thing Mazda really has to overcome is how overcrowded the compact SUV segment really is. Big names like CR-V, Escape, Equinox, and Rav 4 all resonate through the minds of those looking for the best ride in this segment, and that doesn’t help a newer model like the CX-5 – being around just a few years – establish a good hold in the market. But Mazda isn’t giving up yet, and the new design that makes front clip inherently longer than the outgoing model should help the CX-5 garner the attention of those really wanting a sporty compact SUV. On top of that, there’s lots of cool technology like Mazda’s G-Vectoring control, i-ACTIVESENSE safety features, and there’s even a two-step reclining mechanism built into the rear seats.
But, there’s a lot more to talk about when it comes to the 2018 Mazda CX-5, so let’s dive on in a take a good look at what it brings to the table and how it compares to the rather stiff competition in this segment.
New Mazda CX-5 Brings Diesel Engine to the U.S.
Mazda has been promising to bring its 2.2-liter diesel engine to the U.S. ever since it introduced the new family of SkyActiv engines in 2011, but that has yet to happen as of 2016. Fortunately, this will change in 2017, when the Japanese automaker plans to launch the oil burner Stateside in the redesigned CX-5 crossover.
According to Mazda, the 2.2-liter four-cylinder will arrive in North America after four years of delays as part of a diversification drive that will also include an electric car and a plug-in hybrid over the next few years. However, the diesel won’t cross the pond in the same specification available in Europe, as the SkyActiv-D powerplant has to be tweaked to meet the more stringent U.S. regulations for nitrogen oxide emissions. Given the fact that Volkswagen’s "Dieselgate" scandal has damaged the diesel’s already not-so-encouraging reputation in North America, this is far from surprising.
The new CX-5 debuted at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show with three engines: the 2.0- and 2.5-liter gasoline units and the 2.2-liter turbodiesel. Although output figures are not yet available, we do know that the oil burner pumps 173 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque in other models. Given that the recently announced Chevrolet Equinox diesel will come with 136 horses and 236 pound-feet, the CX-5’s rating is nothing to sneeze at. Sure, the output may differ depending on tweaks, but not by much.
Mazda went on to add that the diesel mill will make the CX-5 one of the most fuel-efficient vehicles in its class. The engine will also use the Natural Sound Smoother and Natural Sound Frequency Control, two technologies that reduce diesel knock for a quieter and more pleasing sound.
Look for the diesel-powered Mazda CX-5 to hit U.S. dealerships in the second half of 2017.
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Mazda Redesigns CX-5 for 2017, Gives It CX-9 Features
It’s been only four years since the Mazda CX-5 made its global debut and introduced the company’s then-new Kodo design language and SkyActiv technology, and the crossover has already been redesigned. And no, I’m not talking about a comprehensive facelift, but a full overhaul inside and out, alongside notable changes under the hood.
Introduced at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show, the new CX-5 borrows heavily from the larger and newer CX-9. It actually looks like a shrunken CX-9 to some extent, but it has plenty of unique features of its own. For instance, while the headlamps and grille are shaped like the CX-9, the mesh is honeycomb-like, while the chrome frame extends further into the headlamps. The latter are also longer and have thin LED stripes toward both the inner and outer edges. Also, the chrome frame and the engine hood don’t make contact like they do on the CX-9. This gives the crossover a sporty feel, but it also make it look somewhat awkward from certain angles. Definitely a "love it or hate it" features.
There are obvious similarities around back too. The headlamps are slimmer and more stylish, while the tailgate sports a big trapezoidal license plate recess. Unlike the CX-9, the CX-5 doesn’t have the chrome strip between the taillights and the black bumper insert is significantly lower. I really prefer the CX-9’s more massive looking bumper, but hey, I’m sure other drivers dig the CX-5 as it is.
The interior has also been updated to current Mazda standards, with the most notable change being the infotainment screen sitting on top of the dashboard. There’s also a new control knob on the center console, revised seats, and new materials. Customers can choose from one of three interior packages, including pure white or black leather, or black fabric.
Mazda didn’t release output figures yet, but confirmed that the engine lineup include three engines. There’s the familiar 2.0-liter and 2.5-liter gasoline units, as well as the 2.2-liter diesel powerplant. The six-speed manual and automatic transmissions carry over with modifications. As usual, all-wheel-drive is optional.
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