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Mazda says no to BT-50 SUV

Wagons are circled: Mazda will complete its SUV lineup with the CX-9, and says it has no plans to follow Ford down the Everest route.

Mazda goes quiet on future SUV plans as turbocharged CX-9 readies for launch

25 Aug 2015

MAZDA claims it has no firm plans to expand its SUV range once its all-new CX-9 SUV is publicly unveiled at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show in November.

The news dampens speculation about a range of additions to the company’s line-up, including a coupe-styled SUV dubbed CX-4, a stretched CX-5 that has been linked to the revived CX-7 nameplate, and a wagon version of the BT-50.

Mazda Australia marketing director Alastair Doak told GoAuto he was “happy with what we have now” in response to questions about expanding the SUV range.

“There are no plans to expand the range,” he said at the launch of the Mazda2 sedan in Adelaide.

“We may look at new opportunities in the future, but there’s nothing on the horizon for us. We will also not participate in a 4WD wagon (a version of the BT-50).

“We are delighted with our sales in Australia, and we cover 75-80 per cent of the market. This year we are on target to get to 110,000 sales.”

The company’s BT-50 ute shares its underpinnings and powertrains with the Ford Ranger. A mid-life update is expected in September this year.

Mr Doak said the CX-3 was “going gangbusters”, and Mazda Australia was actively seeking to secure more units. The Mazda2-based crossover has notched up 5535 sales thus far in 2015.

 center imageLeft: Mazda Australia marketing director Alastair Doak

“We’re working to get more,” he said. “The back orders are around two to three months in some cases. In the meantime, it has been an excellent showroom drawcard to our other products.”

Mr Doak said the all-new version of Mazda’s biggest SUV, the CX-9, is expected to arrive in Australia by the middle of 2016. On sale now for almost eight years, the seven-seater still sells around 290 units a month for the brand.

He would not confirm rumours that it would be powered by a turbocharged petrol 2.5-litre engine that would be as powerful – but far more fuel-efficient – than its existing V6. No diesel engine has been confirmed for the CX-9, given the Japanese-made SUV’s biggest market is the US.

The introduction of a turbocharged version of the existing aspirated 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine in the Mazda 6 and CX-5 has also sparked rumours that it may also be used in a high-performance MPS version of the Mazda3 or Mazda6, but Mr Doak said that there were no plans for an MPS version of either car.

“It may happen in the future but there’s nothing confirmed, on the table, that Mazda will make such a car,” he said.”

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