Underpinned by the Ford CD3 platform and animated by a 3.7-liter version of the Ford Cyclone engine, this model is gray-haired anyway you look at the facts and figures. Heck, it’s wearing Mazda badges, it’s manufactured in Japan, yet Mazda doesn’t even sell it in the Land of the Rising Sun.
Without a shadow of a doubt, the Japanese manufacturer is aware of the hard spot the CX-9 finds itself in right now. As such, guess what happens next? You’re spot on - Mazda is working on an all-new generation, due to go on sale early next year. And oh, isn’t that vehicle the 2017 Mazda CX-9?
Automotive tipster Ferd is to thank for the adjacent photos of the new Mazda CX-9. Despite the swirly camouflage model, it’s easy to spot the aesthetic differences over the current CX-9. The upright front fascia will borrow cues from the CX-5, including the adaptive LED headlamps and wing-shaped grille. From the side profile, the CX-9 has the allure of a longroof thanks to a lower roofline and an elegant D-pillar design.
Around the rear, it’s business as usual for the Mazda CX-9, including the short rear overhang. To be underpinned by the most generous variation of the SkyActiv vehicle platform, the 2017 Mazda CX-9 will be offered in front and AWD form. A 6-speed auto will be standard, mated to a 2.5 SkyActiv-G engine.
In comparison to the naturally aspirated version of the motor, producing 184 horsepower in US specification, the CX-9’s 2.5-liter SkyActiv-G is rumored to go turbo. With the aid of forced induction, expect the 2.5 turbo-six to develop 275+ horsepower and sufficient torque to tow 3,500 lbs (1,587 kg).