The new Mazda CX-50 is a tough 4x4 crossover designed for America.

 The new Mazda CX-50 is a tough 4x4 crossover designed for America.



Mazda has unveiled the CX-50, the first of five new SUVs set to be released in the coming years, aimed squarely at customers who live "active and outdoor lifestyles."

From January 2022, the CX-50, which was developed specifically for the US market, will be produced at Mazda and Toyota's shared Huntsville, Alabama factory. It is the first vehicle to bear the CX-50 brand, and it sits between the CX-30 and the CX-5 in Mazda's lineup.

The CX-50 gets four-wheel drive as standard for "greater confidence on- and off-road", with Mazda's new Intelligent Drive Select function (Mi-Drive) providing a variety of drive modes for tackling a range of different terrains and conditions. Mazda claims it will drive "naturally" both on challenging terrain and while towing.

It will be available with either a turbocharged or naturally aspirated version of Mazda's 2.5-litre Skyactiv-G petrol engine, both combined with a six-speed automatic transmission, from the start, while electrified options, including a complete hybrid, will be available later.

Mazda has previously confirmed it will introduce plug-in hybrid technology to its line-up with the Europe-bound CX-60 and CX-80, but has given no indication that this US-only model will be available as a PHEV. The CX-50 will soon be joined by the larger CX-70 and CX-90, which will be among the first models to use the Japanese brand's new six-cylinder petrol engines.

The CX-50 shares a design language with the 3, CX-30, and MX-30, all of which were inspired by the radical Vision Coupé concept from 2017. Narrow LED headlights, a broad chrome-surround grille, and a long, sloping bonnet are all part of the brand's 'Kodo' design concept. The MX-30 EV is referenced by the contrasting body cladding, which is a tribute to its off-road ambitions.

The cabin is similar to that of the 3, while Mazda has added "features inspired by technological, modern outdoor gear" to distinguish the CX-50 as the company's more outdoor-focused SUV.

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