2016 Mazda CX-9: KODO Style And Turbo Engine

The all-new Mazda CX-9 will arrive on the market in the spring of 2016, and will feature a turbocharged 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine. For its large SUV, the Japanese automaker decided to add forced induction to the engine that equips the Mazda6 and the Mazda CX-5.

Over time, the first-generation CX-9 had become the least “Mazda” of Mazdas, with its V6 engine that shared its basic design with Ford’s Duratec powertrain family, and its style that looked nothing like the brand’s more recent products, even if the vehicle’s front end got a redesign in 2013. The new model, unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show, gets a whole new look, and especially a new powertrain. Mazda is imitating Volvo, who also relies on a force-fed four-cylinder engine in their XC90.

The new turbocharged engine

The 2.5-litre four adds a turbo and produces 227 horsepower as well as 310 lb-ft of torque. According to Mazda, that’s the torque equivalent of a naturally aspirated engine with a displacement of 4.0 litres. The compression ratio of this new mill is rather high at 10.5:1, but it can still run on regular fuel. In addition, it features a technology called Dynamic Pressure Turbo, which allows it to change the degree of exhaust pulsation depending on engine speed.

At low rpms, the volume of the exhaust ports can be reduced by a series of valves just before the exhaust gases arrive at the turbine, which maximizes the energy of each pulse. At higher rpms, the valves open up, which allows the turbine to be driven by a constant flow of exhaust gases. We’ll soon have the opportunity to drive a preproduction prototype of the CX-9, and we’ll certainly share our impressions after discovering what this new engine is capable of.

KODO style and a cockpit inspired by Audi

From a style standpoint, the CX-9 clearly adopts the brand’s KODO design language, in addition to several styling cues lifted from the recently introduced CX-3. The production model looks a lot like the Koeru Concept unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show. The 2016 Mazda CX-9 boasts a length of 5,065 mm, or about 30 less than the outgoing model, but its wheelbase has increased by 55 mm, which translates into more rear-seat legroom.

The third row of seats is obviously still included, and accessing them is easier, now that the second row can slide forward – even if a baby seat is hooked up to it. The driver's environment is very similar to the ones in the brand’s other products, with a look inspired by recent Audi models and a high-quality interior finish. The CX-9 has also been filled with several accessories and features such as advanced safety driving aids and a head-up display, for example.

We’ll have our driving impressions of the new 2016 Mazda CX-9 ready very soon, so stay tuned.

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