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Mazda CX-60: non-turbo four-cylinder set for release ahead of straight-sixes, plug-in hybrid


The CX-60 will come to Australia with a broad spectrum of engine options but the price-leading entry-level will be a familiar powertrain

Mazda is primed to launch the CX-60 midsize SUV in Australia with a 2.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine ahead of already-announced six-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, plus a 241kW plug-in hybrid (PHEV).

Details of the entry-level powertrain are yet to be confirmed by Mazda Australia, but the engine is widely understood to be the 2.5-litre non-turbocharged high-compression four-cylinder petrol used in several current Mazda models.

The 2.5-litre ‘G25’ Skyactiv-G series engine is available in the current-generation CX-5 midsize SUV, CX-30 small SUV, Mazda 3 small car and Mazda 6 large car. It was recently announced by Mazda Japan as the entry powertrain in that market for the CX-60 luxury SUV, where it is set to produce around 138kW of power and 250Nm of torque.

The CX-60 will use the 2.5-litre engine found in the Mazda 3 and other Mazda vehicles

With vehicle supply sourced exclusively from Japan, Mazda Australia will launch the vehicle in the latter half of 2022 with a diverse range of PHEV and six-cylinder engines expected to follow quickly.

Chasing Cars has driven a late-stage prototype of the CX-60 plug-in hybrid and our road test will be published later this week.

$55,000 price leader to eschew turbocharging

With the CX-60 being the first vehicle in its onslaught of more premium Large Product Architecture, the decision to launch the midsizer with a relatively modest engine echoes a similar decision by Lexus to equip its latest NX midsize SUV with a non-turbocharged entry-level petrol engine.

The base-model Lexus NX 250 produces 152kW/243Nm and is priced from $60,800, whereas the 138kw CX-60 G25 variant is expected to cost about $55,000 before on-road costs.

Most rival luxury SUVs, though, use a turbo four-cylinder as their base powertrain, with examples ranging from the new $68,350 Audi Q5 35 TDI (120kW/370Nm) through to the Volvo XC60 B5 Momentum (183kW/350Nm) priced at $69,490.

It is significant that Mazda has not opted to utilise the turbocharged version of this engine, given the 2.5-litre turbo petrol seen in high-specification CX-5 grades, and all CX-9 variants, makes much more generous 170kW/420Nm outputs.

An array of straight-six engines and hybrid engines will become available following the launch

The non-turbo 2.5-litre is understood to be equipped with rear-wheel drive (RWD) only, while the six-cylinder 3.3-litre turbo diesel and non-turbo 3.0-litre petrol coming later have AWD. Only the BMW X3 is available in this segment with a pure-RWD entry-level configuration, whereas Audi’s new base Q5 is front-wheel drive.

With the four-cylinder petrol arriving around the $55,000 mark, it’s likely that the six-cylinder engines will attract a premium of $5,000-$15,000, while plug-in hybrid vehicles in this segment typically command around $90,000.

PHEV, inline-six turbodiesel and Skyactiv-X petrol to follow

The months following the initial launch of the CX-60 with the 2.5-litre engine will be followed by the arrival of the PHEV powertrain which features the same engine backed up by a 100kW electric motor for a total system output of 241kW/500Nm.

Australia will then see the introduction of a 187kW/550Nm 3.3-litre turbo-diesel straight-six engine, likely followed by the 3.0-litre petrol straight-six with expected outputs of around 230kW/350Nm.

All powertrains in the CX-60 range are equipped with an eight-speed single-clutch automatic transmission designed in-house.