Why Mazda Just Killed the CX-9 3-Row SUV
Mazda announced today that production of the CX-9 three-row SUV ends this year. Despite its best year ever in 2022, Mazda wants to make room for the forthcoming CX-90 SUV. Instead of running the two SUVs concurrently, as it has done with the CX-5 and CX-50, the Japanese automaker is choosing to eliminate the CX-9 altogether.
Was the Mazda CX-9 a poor seller?
The all-new CX-90 SUV will make its debut this year. Mazda’s well-received CX-9 SUV first hit the market in 2007. Since then, it has held its yearly production numbers fairly consistently between 20,000 and 25,000 before breaking out last year at 34,580 sales. And as sales of three-row SUVs continue to rise amongst all manufacturers, it figured that Mazda would build upon its SUV knowledge to bring a new CX-90 to market.
Mazda also hopes that the CX-90 will bring higher sales which was the expectation from the CX-9. To that end, Mazda has really upped its three-row game. For starters, the CX-9 interior is quite an upgrade from the CX-9. And many more luxury features come with the eight-passenger SUV, it slots in well with Mazda’s premium automaker aspirations.
There are also two new engines, both turbocharged 3.3-liter inline-six offerings. Standard is the 280 hp version, and a more powerful S tune 340 hp engine. There is also a plug-in hybrid option as well. It’s based on its four-cylinder tagged with an electric motor and 17.8-kWh battery. All of these engines come with Mazda’s eight-speed automatic transmission. Mileage is slightly better with 23 mpg City, 28 mpg Highway, and 25 mpg overall.
Did Mazda improve the CX-9 interior in the 2024 CX-90?
Inside, the CX-90 features inspired design and an upgrade in materials, even for the standard versions, over the outgoing CX-9. Premium Plus trims get Nappa leather throughout, including covering the dash. Leather is standard with the Premium trim. On the base models, a 7.0-inch infotainment screen greets drivers, with 10.3-inch or 12.3-inch screens on higher trims.
Besides Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard equipment, wireless connectivity is also a feature. All trims get the i-Activsense driver-assist suite, according to Mazda. It includes automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, and adaptive cruise control.
How much will the 2024 CX-90 cost?
Pricing starts at $40,970 for the base CX-90 Select trim, with the S Premium Plus topping out at $61,325. Nestled between are the Preferred, Preferred Plus, Premium, Premium S, and Premium Plus trims.
Early next year, it is expected that Mazda will debut a shortened two-row CX-70 version of this CX-90 platform. For now, we don’t know exactly when CX-9 SUVs will stop showing up at dealerships. Should you be inclined to consider the CX-9 and save a few grand over its replacement, you may find limited or no new ones to choose from.