By on November 4, 2015

Mazda Motor Corporation - Mazda CX-9 - photo

Mazda announced Wednesday that it would unveil its next-generation CX-9 in Los Angeles later this month.

The three-row crossover made its debut in 2007 and hasn’t changed much since. Mazda’s seven-seater still sits atop the Ford CD3 platform used by previous generations of the Mazda6/Ford Fusion and Ford Edge. It also sports the same powertrain as the previous-generation Edge.

Mazda released a teaser image of the CX-9 on Monday that shows what the crossover would look like if the world had Photoshop filters turned on all the time.

Interestingly, there are hints from other concepts that may make their way into the CX-9. Mazda’s recently unveiled RX Vision rotary sports a similar grille as the CX-9, albeit much, much lower to the ground. There’s a hint of the Koeru D-pillar — OK, maybe it’s a whisper.

Mazda didn’t mention anything about the CX-9’s powertrain in its release. The company announced last week that it was indefinitely postponing plans to bring diesel to the States (gee, I wonder why?) and we’re willing to bet that the CX-9 won’t be rotary powered. The current CX-9 is powered by a 3.7-liter V-6 borrowed from Ford.

The Los Angeles Auto Show begins Nov. 17 and The Truth About Cars will be there reporting live from the TTAC LA Bureau Desk during the show*.

* The TTAC LA Bureau Desk is actually the gutter outside the Staples Center.

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24 Comments on “Mazda Goes All Hollywood for Next-gen CX-9 Premiere...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    What do you wanna bet the new gen spells the end of ANY V6 offering from Mazda, as they’re currently putting the 3.7 V6 in the CX-9 – which I assume is the Ford one.

    • 0 avatar
      Chocolatedeath

      I fear this but I am hopeful. They will fall way behind Honda and Toyota if this is true. DOnt know why they just dont buy Honda or Toyota V6 if they cant afford to make one themselves.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        They don’t seem bothered with competing on engine sizes with other manufacturers (not sure why). And that 3.7 is plenty old now as well, with Ford phasing it out.

        They’re content to work on a rotary for whatever future sports coupe, but not something with six cylinders. Mazda logic!

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          The 3.7L is still a very good engine. It is *slowly* being phased out. I wonder what Ford will replace it with though. It seems that the 2.7TT hasn’t been used as a 3.5L/3.7L replacement like I thought it would. Probably because it is so much beastier.

      • 0 avatar
        Demetri

        They can afford to make one, but just like everyone else, they’ve had to consider the potential efficiency and packaging advantages of a turbocharged engine. Even Honda and Toyota are replacing NA engines with smaller turbocharged ones.

        The speculation is this will be the first application of a new 2.5L turbo engine, but you never know. It could be a V6 or even an I6. You can see with the pet rotary project that they aren’t content with just copying what everyone else is doing. They want to have their own identity. Being one of the few still offering NA 6-cylinder power would certainly do that.

        • 0 avatar
          Fordson

          “You can see with the pet rotary project that they aren’t content with just copying what everyone else is doing.”

          Hahaha…they can’t AFFORD what everyone else is doing. They basically have two engines…a 2.0 and 2.5 NA fours. They don’t have two nickels to rub together for powertrains and they’re trying to resuscitate the rotary – ?

          Brilliant.

          • 0 avatar
            Demetri

            Mazda is doing fine financially at the moment. The rotary is just a little side project. Even if nothing comes of it, it’s at least something fun for the engineers to play with from time to time. I doubt it drains any significant amount of resources.

          • 0 avatar
            mike978

            “They don’t have two nickels to rub together for powertrains ” – really? Is that why they have managed to launch three new engines (1.5, 2.0 and 2.5) along with two new transmissions in the past few years. Along with the new platforms they ahve updated a lot of their technology in aa relatively short time and withoquality or reliability issues it would seem. Pretty impressive actually.

          • 0 avatar
            Fordson

            The platforms is where they spent the $$$ (and it shows – they’re wonderful).

            The engines…they are trying to power everything from a mini-CUV, to a compact hatch, to a mid-size sedan, to a rwd sportscar, with the same 2.0 liter engine.

            Their Skyactiv technology is interesting, but they are really quite low specific output designs, and they have only one version of each size engine, while competitors have low and high output versions of their four-cylinder engines.

            We have $2 gas and Mazda has no large vehicle with high profit margins…their most powerful engine that they make has like 184 horsepower.

          • 0 avatar
            mike978

            Mazda invested as you say in the key component of the car (along with revitalized interior and exterior design). For the market segments they are in you only need 2 or 3 engines. For example the Corolla, RAV4 and Camry can use just two engines. Excludes the V6 Camry which 10% or so buy. So Mazda is following the leaders in having a lean engine line up.
            ‘They will have a higher powered engine for the CX9, with more output than the current 2.5L. That will give them options to have a higher powered 6 and 3 as required. They provide more engine choices in the mainstream compact segment than either Ford, Honda or Toyota (excluding specific sports models like the ST or Si.

          • 0 avatar
            carlisimo

            As Mike978 says, there’s also a 1.5L in the Mazda2 (sold here as the Scion xA). In other countries there are also a gasoline 1.3L and a diesel 2.2L. But yes, all of the gasoline engines are very similar. They’re just scaled versions of each other.

            I’m really curious which is harder for Mazda: develop a completely different (V6) engine, or turbocharge their high-compression Skyactiv-G engines. The V6 may be more difficult. They’re using relatively bulky exhaust headers to keep combustion temperatures down and compression up, so it’d hurt even more to need to fit two of them.

        • 0 avatar
          Chocolatedeath

          Yes but not Honda or Toyota have taken V6 out of their “large” CUV’s. They are betting they can get equal emissions and MPG out of them compared to a 4 offered by others. So far they are right. Both the HIghlander and Pathfinder get great MPG for their size with a v6

        • 0 avatar
          gtemnykh

          Honda actually did the opposite with the RDX, if you recall it was launched to much fanfare amongst the Honda tuner crowd as the first US Honda with factory turbocharging. A 2.3L mill making 240hp. It sucked down a lot of gas so Honda made the new RDX with the ubiquitous J series 3.5L V6. The car actually got faster, smoother, and real world fuel economy jumped up a fair amount. To be fair part of the MPG gain was losing the sophisticated SH-AWD system and regressing to a more fuel efficient CRV-like setup.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    I’ve always been a little surprised (and slightly bothered) that the CX-9 is based on a lengthened Edge platform and not the Explorer platform, while the late CX-7 was a different platform entirely.

  • avatar
    shifter25

    I’m hoping they work out a deal with Toyota for the 3.5L V6. Seems like a better fit for a vehicle that size compare to a turbo 4 cylinder. Plus, the real world MPG would probably be better on the V6 than the turbo.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      It is possible but would it fit in the 6 as I would assume any CX9 engine option would also be used in other products. Especially since Mazda do seem to listen to complaints – within 2 years they revised the 6 to have a better infotainment system and reduced NVH.

  • avatar
    TMA1

    Without a V6 available, I wonder if Mazda is finally going to turbocharge a SkyActiv engine. That could bode well for future Mazdaspeed offerings.

    • 0 avatar
      Fordson

      I don’t see much about the design of that engine that lends itself to turbocharging…the really high compression ratio, the long-tube header design that they use as an integral part of the design philosophy…the whole Atkinson-cycle thing – just not that great a fit.

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        That’s what I’ve heard, but they’ve got to power this thing somehow. It’s too big for Mazda’s 2.5, and a Ford V6 goes against their corporate branding.

        Plus, I really want to see a new Mazdaspeed3 or 6.

  • avatar
    carlisimo

    “All Hollywood” would mean using blue and orange promotional images.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    That’s good, because the current Ford-CD3-based CX-9 is getting a little long in the tooth, even with its two facelifts.

  • avatar
    redav

    There are already camo shots of the new CX-9, so it’s no big secret what it will look like.

    The engine has repeatedly been rumored to be a turbo 4. It makes sense in some ways (the overall trend in reducing cylinder count, leveraging all the work they did for the SkyActiv engines) but not in others (they built an entire extra cell into their engine machining operation just to accommodate the V6, so if they drop the V6 they lose the investment, they talked about introducing more upscale cars with a 6 cylinder engine, there’s plenty of room to upgrade/modernize the current V6).

    My guess is that they will go with a turbo-4 because they see more future potential for it. It will be quite different than their current engines as it will be designed from the ground up with turbo in mind. The engine will be used in multiple cars, including a new Speed3. I would also put it in the 6 as the upgrade engine, especially since the diesel is not on the horizon. The direct applicability in the Speed3 and 6 are advantages that a V6 simply doesn’t have.

    The CX-9 won’t get a diesel (despite the high torque & efficiency are perfect for a CX-9) in part because of their problems with the diesel and the CX-9 is a North America product where diesel just isn’t that popular.

    I would like them to keep a V6 in their portfolio for use in a sports car (as an alternative to a rotary) and a future flagship luxury car. If they had those cars, then it would also make sense to use it in the CX-9. But they don’t have those cars, which means it doesn’t make sense in the CX-9, which means they shouldn’t keep the V6, from a dollars & cents perspective. They can’t indulge in every unique engine.


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