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Aussie input helped shape Mazda CX-9

Help from Aus: Feedback from the Australian market helped shape the new-generation Mazda CX-9.

Mazda Australia execs were involved in the CX-9 project from the beginning

13 Jul 2016

MAZDA has revealed that Australian input in the new-generation CX-9 was extensive, with members of the local team present from the first product meeting more than three years ago.

Speaking at the launch of the second-generation CX-9 in Melbourne this week, Mazda North America vice-president of research and development Masashi Otsuka said that the Australian product planning team were consulted on design, packaging, performance and dynamic parameters.

“Australia was involved from the beginning,” he explained. “Australia is a very important market.”

Highlighting Australia’s influence in the project is the fact that the local outfit requested to have Mazda’s i-Eloop energy recuperation and i-Stop idle-stop systems integrated into the CX-9, even though neither the United States nor the Canadian markets wanted it. “The i-Eloop and i-Stop systems were developed exclusively for Australia,” according to Mazda Australia marketing director Alastair Doak.

“No other market in the world had requested them. We asked for them and they made it happen.”

Currently ranked third for overall CX-9 volume behind the US and Canada, Australia is the biggest right-hand-drive country for the seven-seat SUV.

Since its launch in December 2007, about 33,000 of the first-gen CX-9s have been registered in Australia. The newcomer is expected to eclipse that total over time, with the forecast calling for about 6000 sales annually.

With development starting in 2012, the TC CX-9 is the first Mazda passenger vehicle to be completely designed and engineered outside of Japan, at Mazda’s North American headquarters in Irvine, California.

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