Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Autoshow Season: Mazda to show CX-9 at NY

Mazda CX-9 crossoverWell, not long after Mazda spent time making sure the press knew that their new CX-7 crossover was _not_ a twin to the new Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX twins...and is a Mazda3 derivative that can only hold a turbo 4-cylinder (vs the larger vehicle's 3.5l V-6).

Why the duplication of effort for a smaller crossover? Well, it is simply the CX-9 boys and girls.

Mazda CX-7 crossoverCX-9 is similar in styling to the CX-7 - see the picture of the 7 here and compare to the 9 above - (explaining the past year of confusing spy shots identifying a future Mazda crossover as sometimes bigger than the CX-7 turned out to be). CX-9 is actually not only a larger crossover for Mazda but will likely replace the slow-selling MPV minivan. Where CX-7 only seats, at most, 5 - the CX-9 has a third-row seat and can seat 6-7.

Not to mention that the MPV really didn't fit the whole sporty 'zoom zoom' branding Mazda has been aiming for (and is the reason we expect the Tribute and B-series pickups to go bye-bye pretty soon).

Expect the CX-9 with 3.5l V-6 (like its Edge and MKX brothers), in both front and all-wheel drive, and a 6-speed automatic to go on sale later this year.

Wow, consistent styling _and_ coherent brand message? This Mazda thing might work out for Ford after all.

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