The Mazda CX-9 is due to be launched by the end of 2023 in North America. Its future in Australia — where it is one of the best-selling seven-seater SUVs — has not yet been determined.
That Mazda CX-9 large family SUV will be discontinued in North America within two years to make room for a new exclusive CX-90 SUV but the future of one of Australia’s favorite seven-seater has not yet been determined.
According to a global announcement from Mazda on Thursday, the Japanese carmaker will introduce five new models internationally over the next two years, four of which will be based on a new rear-wheel drive platform: CX-60, CX-70, CX-80 and CX-90 .
As part of the announcements, it was revealed that the Mazda CX-9 will be replaced in the US and Canada by the new, rear-wheel drive CX-90, as the brand’s only SUV offering with three rows of seats.
”While the CX-50 and CX-70 [the new two-row SUVs due in the US in 2022 or 2023] will serve as additions to Mazda’s lineup in the United States, the CX-90 will replace the current generation CX-9 as Mazda’s American three-row SUV, ”reads a statement from Mazda USA.
Although the CX-9 will be phased out in North America — its main market — Mazda Australia says it is “too early to speculate” on the future of the popular seven-seater locally, as the all-new CX-90 is only under consideration for an Australian launch, and not yet locked inside.
While Mazda has confirmed that the existing CX-5 midsize and CX-8 large SUVs will continue to be sold along with the new two-row CX-60 – the only ‘large platform’ model locked inside Australia until now the CX-9 was conspicuously missing in last week’s announcement, prompting some to speculate that the model could be dropped without replacement in sight.
“America has confirmed exactly which of the four [‘large’ platform SUVs] they get it so they are better able to clarify what it means for their existing line-up. For us, we have only locked the CX-60 to Australia at this time, so it is most important for us to also confirm that the CX-5 will live next to it, ”said a Mazda Australia spokesman Drive.
“When we are able to confirm whether we want to bring the CX-70, CX-80 and CX-90 here, we get better visibility about what it means for the CX-9, and whether the specifications and grade offerings can complement each other in a similar way to CX-3 and CX-30, or not. ”
As a refresher, last week Mazda saw five new midsize and large SUVs for launch in 2022 and 2023, wearing CX-50, CX-60, CX-70, CX-80 and CX-90 nameplates.
Although the CX-50 will be a US market model based on the Mazda CX-30’s front-wheel drive platform – rated as “extremely unlikely” for Australia – the remaining four models will run on a new ‘Large’ platform, based around the longitudinally mounted (front to rear) four-cylinder or inline-six motors driving behind or all wheels.
The CX-60 and CX-70 models offer two rows of seats, while the CX-80 and CX-90 step up to three rows.
The vehicles will be further divided across the markets in which they will be sold; the ‘narrow body’ CX-60 and CX-80 will be put on markets with tighter parking lots and streets like Europe and Japan, while the CX-70 and CX-90 will target interior space-hungry regions, including North America.
Given its North American focus, the new CX-90 expects to be similar in size to (or slightly larger than) today’s Mazda CX-9. Expect space for up to seven passengers and their luggage and market position between regular SUVs like the Hyundai Palisade and Toyota Kluger and premium Audi Q7, Volvo XC90 and Genesis GV80.
Mazda’s North American models will be available with a new turbocharged inline-six petrol engine or a plug-in hybrid system expected to pair a four-cylinder petrol engine with an electric motor. All Mazda SUVs sold in the United States from model year 2022 onwards are equipped with four-wheel drive as standard.
The new Mazda CX-90 – together with wider CX-50, CX-60, CX-70 and CX-80 line-up will launch in markets in 2022 and 2023, the Japanese brand has confirmed.
Specific launch dates remain thin on the ground, though the front-wheel-drive CX-50 will launch, with a global unveiling scheduled for November 2021 (probably at the Los Angeles Motor Show) and the first cars scheduled to roll out of the Alabama production line in January 2022.
The Mazda CX-60 will be launched in Australia sometime in 2022. Across the Pacific, Mazda USA has confirmed that the three-row CX-90 will be launched before the two-row CX-70, although these vehicles are scheduled for 2022 or 2023 is back to be seen.
Read more about Alex Misoyannis