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Mazda to debut all-new CX-9 in LA

As expected, SKYACTIV and KODO big parts of new CUV

Published: November 4, 2015, 5:35 PM
Updated: December 27, 2015, 12:36 AM

Mazda CX-9 design sketch

Mazda has made it official that an all-new CX-9 large crossover utility vehicle (CUV) will have its world debut at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show.

The new vehicle will share the KODO-Soul of Motion design of the current generation of vehicles in Mazda showrooms, while evolving the bodystyle and space of the current generation CX-9 (introduced in 2007). Although it’s been updated several times to keep it current with the Mazda look, it didn’t hide that the CX-9 is actually based on the old Ford Flex platform and shares much of the mechanicals. Not that that’s a bad thing.

The new CX-9 will be built on new architecture, which earlier suggested to many that it might mean the resurrection of the CX-7, perhaps as a 3-row crossover. It will, of course, use the latest SKYACTIV technologies, which probably means power from a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine but a smoother ride and more dynamic handling.

Mazda calls the new CX-9 a high-end model of its new-generation lineup, moving toward a more premium design execution that befits a 3-row midsize crossover SUV. That suggests that maybe the CX-7 is not part of the company’s future, and the new CX-9 may be downsized slightly to bridge the existing gap the compact CX-5.