Another Zoomy Crossover: Meet the Rugged Mazda CX-50

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey
another zoomy crossover meet the rugged mazda cx 50

The Los Angeles Auto Show is this week — yes, it’s actually happening, as of this writing, and this author is boarding a flight for Cali tomorrow — and one of the vehicles that had been teased in advance of the show was the Mazda CX-50.

Your humble scribe was supposed to be in L.A. this past weekend to see it, but COVID caused Mazda’s off-site to be binned. Which is why I’m instead looking at press photos while sitting here in cold-ass Chicago.

The CX-50 is a new model, slated to be built in Huntsville, Alabama. It’s another crossover, full of the Mazda “zoom-zoom” ethos, but meant to be rugged enough for relatively light off-roading. All-wheel drive will be standard, along with a system of customizable drive modes. Two engines will be on offer — a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder or a turbocharged 2.5-liter four. A six-speed automatic is the sole transmission available.

Electrification is in the cards, and that includes a hybrid model, though Mazda is mum on further details at this point. A panoramic moonroof will be available for the first time on any Mazda. A terracotta interior color joins some new-to-Mazda exterior colors.

“This new Mazda vehicle has been developed for North America, particularly to support the active and outdoor lifestyles of customers in this region,” Jeff Guyton, President and CEO of Mazda North American Operations said in the press release. “The CX-50 encourages people to immerse themselves in nature without compromising on the premium design and outstanding on-road performance Mazda is known for.”

You’ll notice I’m not saying much on specs. That’s because Mazda will be releasing more info at a later date. For now, we can gaze upon Mazda’s newest crossover, which seems like a natural competitor to the upcoming Subaru Solterra and Toyota bZ4X.

One thing we do know — Mazda intends to begin production in January 2022.

[Images: Mazda]

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  • Lightspeed Lightspeed on Nov 17, 2021

    "...the active and outdoor lifestyles of customers in this region,” don't they know everyone rides a Peloton indoors? When will this myth of outdoors lifestyle be put to bed? It should read, 'the numerous trips to Costco made by customers in this region.'

  • Protege5 Protege5 on Dec 08, 2021

    am I the only one who is in love with the look of this car? I kind of liked the other cxs but this one is so good-looking.

  • MaintenanceCosts We hear endlessly from the usual suspects about the scenarios where EVs don't work as well as gas cars. We never hear the opposite side of the coin. From an EV owner (since 2019) who has a second EV reserved, here are a few points the "I road trip 1000 miles every day" crowd won't tell you about:[list][*]When you have a convenient charging situation, EV fueling is more convenient than a gas car. There is no stopping at gas stations and you start every day with a full tank.[/*][*]Where there are no-idling rules (school pickup/dropoff, lines for ferries or services, city loading, whatever else) you can keep warm or cool to your heart's content in your EV.[/*][*]In the cold, EVs will give you heat from the second you turn them on.[/*][*]EVs don't care one bit if you use them for tons of very short trips. Their mechanicals don't need to boil off condensation. (Just tonight, I used my EV to drive six blocks, because it was 31 degrees and raining, and walking would have been unpleasant.)[/*][*]EVs don't stink and don't make you breathe carcinogens on cold start.[/*][*]EV maintenance is much less frequent and much cheaper, eliminating almost all items having to do with engine, transmission, or brakes in a gas car. In most EVs the maintenance schedule consists of battery coolant changes and tire maintenance.[/*][*]You can accelerate fast in EVs without noisily attracting the attention of the cops and every passerby on the street.[/*][/list]
  • MaintenanceCosts Still can't get a RAV4 Prime for love or money. Availability of normal hybrid RAV4s and Highlanders is only slightly better. At least around here I think Toyota could sell twice the number of vehicles that they are actually bringing in at the moment.
  • Tree Trunk Been in the market for a new Highlander Hybrid, it is sold out with order time of 6 months plus. Probably would have bit the bullet if it was not for the dealers the refuse to take an order but instead want to sell from allotment whether it fits or not and at thousands over MRSP.
  • AKHusky The expense argument is nonsense. My mach e was $42k after tax credit. Basically the same as similarly equipped edge. And it completely ignores that the best selling vehicles are Rams, F150s, and Silverados, all more expensive that a bolt, MAch e or ID4. As an owner, I'd say they are still in second car territory for most places in the country.
  • Johnster I live in a red state and I see quite a few EVs being purchased by conservative, upper-class Republicans (many of them Trump-supporters). I suspect that it is a way for them to flaunt their wealth and that, over time, the preference for EVs will trickle down to less well-off Republicans.