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2021 Mazda CX-9 Review: Expected Prices, Release Date, MPG and Performance

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John Bedrow

Automotive Journalist

August 26, 2020 at 09:04 AM

The Mazda CX-9 is a practical, 3-row SUV from the reliable Japanese manufacturer and for the 2021 model year, it will remain largely unchanged but that’s no bad news since it comes with plenty of space, a punchy and frugal engine and one of the best interiors at this price point which makes it a strong contender for the 2021 lineup.

The SUV segment is full of cut-throat competition. Companies are striving hard and keen to bring out the best each year. Mazda is one of the most successful car manufacturers in the market. Be it the sedans, the hatches, or the SUVs, Mazda has proven how capable it is in delivering affordable vehicles with no compromises. The biggest in Mazda’s line-up is the 2021 Mazda CX-9 which is going to be a perfect blend of style, luxury, performance, and fuel efficiency. 

The 2021 Mazda CX-9 is quite a compelling package with all the features it offers and performance it does without compromising with safety or fuel economy. While it comes to the competition part, the Honda Passport stands to be a huge rival. Then comes the Korean Hyundai Palisade and the German Volkswagen Atlas. So what makes the Mazda go special on the markets with its new CX-9, let’s check out!

What’s New with the 2021 Mazda CX-9?

The 2021 Mazda CX-9 is to remain unchanged from the current year model. The newer vehicle would carry over the same bold characters in the exterior and luxury-packed interior from the 2020 model. 

What’s the expected price and release date of the 2021 Mazda CX-9?

Mazda hasn’t made any official announcements regarding the launch or release of the 2021 CX-9. But as per the release done every year, the new SUV would come to the market by the fall of 2020. No official confirmation about the prices is also made by the manufacturers. Being a carryover vehicle, the prices are expected to be around $34,990 to $47,315. 

What to expect in the engine department of the 2021 Mazda CX-9?

The 2021 Mazda CX-9 comes equipped with a 2.5L Turbocharged Inline-4 engine paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission which together produces a massive 250 horsepower and 329 lb-ft of torque when fed with 93 Octane fuel. The figures drop to 227 horsepowers and 310 lb-ft of torque for normal grade fuel. 

The CX-9 has undergone many refinements all these years and has developed an efficient and power-saving engine with uncompromised performance. The CX-9 also gets an optional All-wheel drivetrain which gives much better performance while off-roading. 

Models

2021 Mazda CX-9 (Expected)

2020 Hyundai Palisade

2020 Honda Passport

2020 Volkswagen Atlas

Base MSRP

$34,990

$35,065

$37,530

$35,915

Engine

2.5L Turbocharged I-4

3.8L V6

3.5L V6

2.0L Turbocharged I-4

Transmission

6-Speed Automatic transmission

8-Speed Automatic transmission

9-Speed Automatic transmission

8-Speed Automatic transmission

Horsepower

227 hp @ 5000 rpm

291 hp @ 6000 rpm

280 hp @ 6000 rpm

235 hp @ 4500 rpm

Torque

310 lb-ft @ 2000 rpm

262 lb-ft @ 5200

262 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm

258 lb-ft @ 1600 rpm

0-60 (sec)

7.1

6.9

6.1

7.2

Quarter-mile (sec)

15.5

15.3

15.0

14.9

*2020 figures used for reference

From the figures, the Mazda CX-9 is the lowest in the race, whereas the Palisade wins in terms of engine power. The Honda Passport ought to be the second followed by the Atlas. The CX-9 also gets decent acceleration timings, but the Quarter-mile acceleration seems quite disappointing. However, the Passport gets better 0-60 acceleration whereas the Atlas is the fastest to cover the Quarter-mile. 

How will the 2021 Mazda CX-9 handle?

The Mazda CX-9 is a decently sized crossover but the maneuverability isn’t compromised at by any means in spite of its large footprint. The CX-9 is blessed with extremely good on-road mannerisms and is a dynamically sound SUV. The adaptive suspension system improves the ride quality and elevates the experience of luxury and comfort even in rugged terrain. The steering is really quick and responsive and offers good feedback to the driver. 

The extremely comfortable ride quality lets you take it out for long drives and the ease of handling promotes you to go on many adventures. The intelligent system lets you take on most of the bumps unnoticed, which makes you as comfortable as possible. 

How many miles to the gallon does the 2021 Mazda CX-9 deliver?

The 2020 Mazda CX-9 gets you around 22 miles per gallon in the city, 28 miles per gallon on the highways, and a combined value of 24 mpg. With a decently sized 19-gallon fuel tank, a good fuel economy would offer you a decent range which means you need not stop at the gas station frequently.

Models

2021 Mazda CX-9 (Expected)

2020 Hyundai Palisade

2020 Honda Passport

2020 Volkswagen Atlas

MPG (City)

22

19

20

21

MPG (Highway)

28

26

25

24

MPG (Combined)

24

22

22

22

Fuel Tank Capacity (gallons)

19

18.8

19.5

18.6

Range (City/highway) (miles)

418/532

357.2/488.8

390/487.5

390.6/446.4

*2020 figures used for reference

The figures clearly show that the Mazda CX-9 has been the best in terms of fuel efficiency and range, which leads the segment. The rest of the rivals do perform equally such that if one excels in City drives, the other does better on the highways. However, the figures are expected to be the same for the upcoming model also. 

What to expect from the 2021 Mazda CX-9’s interiors?

The CX-9 gets extremely sophisticated interiors with a supreme luxurious cabin and ultra-modern tech inside. The leather upholstery makes the looks premium and the top-end comes with the most premium Nappa Leather on all surfaces. The seats offer good support and let you settle down comfortably as it offers multiple power adjustments. The seats also feature heating and ventilating facilities which makes you convenient during longer rides. 

The cabin is extremely spacious and roomy to occupy 7 passengers comfortably. The third-row seats better suit children due to somewhat cramped dimensions. Some of the creature comfort features include three-zone Automatic Climate Control, LED accent lighting, moonroof, and many more. 

Models

2021 Mazda CX-9 (Expected)

2020 Hyundai Palisade

2020 Honda Passport

2020 Volkswagen Atlas

Passenger Capacity

7

7

5

7

Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

39.3/57.9/41.0

40.7/61.2/44.1

39.5/62/40.9

41.3/61.5/41.5

Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

38.5/58.1/39.4

40.1/60.8/42.4

40/61.9/39.6

40.4/60.8/37.6

Third (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

35.4/53.1/29.7

37.8/55.2/31.4

N/A

38.3/54.9/33.7

Cargo Capacity (ft. cu.)

14.4

18

50.5

20.6

*2020 figures used for reference

The figures show that the CX-9 is spacious and roomy in the first and second rows. The third row is a bit cramped than the rivals and better suits children as we mentioned earlier. The available cargo capacity in the CX-9 is around 14.4 cubic feet which shall be improved by the 50/50 split fold-down third-row seats and 60/40 split fold-down second-row. 

2021 Mazda CX-9: Infotainment System and Connectivity

The Mazda CX-9 gets the Mazda Connect Infotainment System. The system is very intelligent and popular among the folks due to the interactive assistance features it offers which helps you while on long trips or in tough traffic. The base trim gets a 7-inch touchscreen and the higher trims get the 9-inch screen. 

The digital driver display gives you all the information you need while driving. Bluetooth streaming and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto let you enjoy connectivity. SiriusXM satellite HD radio is also available. The system also gets the Satellite Navigation with Real-Time Traffic and the Mazda Navigation System. The sound quality gets enhanced with the 12-speaker Bose Centerpoint 2 Surround System with AudioPilot. Radio specs available include the Aha Internet Radio integration, Pandora Internet Radio System, and the Stitcher Internet Radio System. 

Will there be any changes to the exterior of the 2021 Mazda CX-9?

The Mazda CX-9 is a premium looking classy vehicle with impactful design. The bird-eyed design impresses the crowd and stands out in the traffic. The CX-9 gets a sleek and simple design all around, with elegant chrome touch, eagle-eyed LED headlights, and a massive front grille. The alloy wheels catch our eyes in the side profile. 

This award-winning design that emphasizes minimalism has been a huge hit over the years and its no surprise that Mazda has continued to stick with this design through 2021 as it continues to look fresh even today and stands out in a sea of otherwise boxy and conventional-looking 3-row SUVs.

Models

2021 Mazda CX-9 (Expected)

2020 Hyundai Palisade

2020 Honda Passport

2020 Volkswagen Atlas

Curb Weight (lbs)

4317

4231

4017

N/A

Length (in.)

199.4

196.1

190.5

198.3

Width (in.)

77.5

77.8

78.6

78.3

Height (in.)

67.6

68.9

71.6

70

Ground Clearance (in.)

N/A

7.9

N/A

N/A

Wheelbase (in.)

115.3

114.2

111

117.3

Track Width (in.) F/R

65.3/65.2

67.2/67.6

67/66.7

67.2/67.8

*2020 figures used for reference

The CX-9 is the longest among all its rivals. Moreover, it is the heaviest of all but handles well indeed. The Honda Passport is the widest and tallest. Mazda gets the second-most wheelbase after the Volkswagen Atlas. 

Will the 2021 Mazda CX-9 be worth my money and time?

The Mazda CX-9 is a bold, sporty, and classy-looking vehicle with the best ride quality and luxurious interiors. The SUV is a value-for-money and compelling buy which gives a perfect balance of comfort and performance. Being a carry-over model, it won’t be too necessary that you should wait for the 2021 model release. The 2020 model itself would satisfy you with its features. If you aren’t in a hurry, then we would recommend you to wait for the release of the newer Mazda.

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