Mazda is believed to be working on a 'CX-6' coupe-style SUV, to sit between the high-selling CX-5 and seven-seat CX-8/9 in the Japanese brand's SUV line-up.
It is understood that the new model will launch in 2021, and will be underpinned by the next iteration of the SkyActiv chassis and powertrains that will debut in the next-generation CX-5.
However, the exterior will likely be completely unique, sporting an edgier, premium look compared with the more traditional CX-5.
Mazda Australia refused to comment on the validity of the CX-6, however its marketing director Alastair Doak said any new SUV model “would be warmly welcomed in Australia, due to the growing popularity of SUVs”.
The new model's styling may have been previewed by the Koeru concept – unveiled at the Frankfurt motor show in 2015 – which boasts smooth and futuristic body lines.
As the so-called CX-6 will be aimed at the premium end of the market, it will likely be powered by a the 2.5-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine from the CX-9 large SUV and Mazda6 mid-size sedan.
Mazda is also planning to launch its innovative SkyActiv-X petrol engines which use compression ignition (like a diesel) as well as conventional spark plugs to increase efficiency, which could also be a possible feature on the new model.
Late last year, Mazda Motor Corporation (MMC) president and CEO Masamichi Kogai told Automotive News that the company plans to develop an all-new SUV line-up from 2021.
“We are going to introduce a totally new and different type of SUV,” he said. “R&D is co-ordinating with our North American operations on that right now.”
It is also expected to be produced in North America at a new joint-venture manufacturing facility with Toyota, in Alabama.
Mazda and Toyota announced the joint-venture company, Mazda Toyota Manufacturing USA Inc, in May, confirming plans for 150,000 units of a Mazda SUV as well as 150,000 Toyota Corollas that will be built in Alabama each year.
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