Mazda Australia Managing Director Martin Benders claims that the next generation CX-9 will be better than than the Toyota duo of Prado and Kluger. The latter two have been heavily dominating the segment but Mr. Benders is confident the 2016 CX-9 will provide serious competition to them.
“Even today the CX-9 still gets really good raps and the only complaints we really get about it are fuel economy,” said Mr. Benders to Australian website motoring.com.au.
He further added: “So if we can deliver a similar drive experience and torque experience and bring the fuel down to manageable levels then I think we are on to a winner, because from a packaging point of view when you stack a CX-9 up against a Prado it’s a lot more comfortable, a lot more easy access, a lot more room. Against a Kluger? Well, I think we will be better than that.”
The first generation Mazda CX-9 went into production in 2006 and has received two facelifts till date. The full-size crossover is due for a major redesign now and will likely feature the latest KODO design language.
A report released in May said that the second generation CX-9 will be unveiled at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show in November. According to this report, the crossover will be powered by a new 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine that will debut on the all-new Mazdaspeed 3 at the 2015 International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt.
Since the D-segment crossover is primarily developed for the U.S. market, it will come without a turbo-diesel engine.
“The new engine that is going into the CX-9 will perform as well as a diesel would,” Mr. Benders commented.
The second generation CX-9 will be the last all-new Mazda scheduled for launch and production before the next generation of Skyactiv II vehicles start rolling from the company’s factory in 2017, led by the second generation CX-5. Mr. Benders suggested it would be the only seven-seat crossover to be introduced by the Japanese automaker in the short-term future.