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2009 Mazda CX-9 - The Award-Winning Flagship SUV - (UK)

August 27th, 2008
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At a Glance*

Exterior
• Mazda’s flagship SUV and largest vehicle in its product line-up
• Sleek and sporty design
• Large front bumper with chrome grille bar
• Headlamps with silver-look mouldings that bend into the fenders, and a sculptured bonnet
• Sporty silhouette with steep windscreen angle, and kick-up belt line
• 10-spoke, 20-inch alloy wheels and door mirror turning lamps
• Five-point rear window design, roof spoiler, dual trapezoidal exhaust pipes

Interior
• Mazda’s first three-seat-row SUV
• Seating capacity of up to 6 people
• Decorative, wood-like embellishments and silver garnishes throughout the cabin for quality look
• Hooded instrument cluster, black-out meters with silver rings, indirect illumination for easy reading
• High floor console with high-mount shift lever for fun and easy driving
• Power adjustable and heated driver and front passenger seats
• Driver’s seat with memory function (three driver positions inside the car and two additional positions with the two key cards)
• Driver seat with power adjustable lumbar support
• Foam insulation applied at 22 locations in body shell – most ever used on a Mazda vehicle – for superior cabin quietness
• SUV interior flexibility with seat configurations from 2 up to 6 seats
• VDA load volume from 267 litres (all seats up) to 1,911 litres (2nd and 3rd rows folded)

Powertrain
• New MZI 3.7-litre V6 petrol engine is the most powerful unit in the Mazda line-up
• Produces 204 kW/273 hp (SAE-NET) of maximum power at 6,250 rpm, and 366 Nm of torque at 4,250 rpm
• Six-speed automatic transmission, with manual shift mode
• Durable, lightweight, 60° V6 short-stroke engine for smooth, powerful operation
• Extensive NVH measures mean quiet engine operation
• Sequential Valve Timing (S-VT) for optimised torque at all engine speeds
• High compression ratio and electronic throttle for excellent pedal response

Chassis & Safety
• Highly rigid body shell as basis for outstanding handling and steering attributes
• MacPherson strut front suspension with 6-point rubber mount perimeter frame for sharp, linear steering feel
• Hydraulic power assistance for rack-and-pinion steering system
• Multi-link rear suspension with optimised link layout for consistent wheel alignment and predictable handling
• Rear suspension with one trailing arm and two lateral locating members on each side
• Trailing arms positioned higher for superior stability during braking
• Mazda’s Active Torque-Split all-wheel drive system for reliable traction in all road conditions
• Large diameter 320 mm front and 325 mm rear ventilated disc brakes
• Roll stability control (RSC), ABS, emergency brake assist (EBA), electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and DSC
• High-tensile steel and large-section body members for a robust passenger cell that resists deformation
• Special front sub-frame extension designed to help prevent the front of the CX-9 from climbing up the front of an on-coming vehicle in a head-on collision
• Impact-absorbing pads in all four doors and door inside trim to help prevent side intrusion
• Front, side and full length (three-row) curtain airbags
• Special front head restraint anti-whiplash design to reduce possibility of neck injury in rear collision
• Collapsible brake pedal to help avoid lower leg injury to driver
• Highest possible ranking of five stars on frontal and side impact crash testing from the U.S. government’s NHTSA, and a four-star rollover resistance rating

Available Equipment
• High quality leather seats with double stitching
• Premium BOSE®, 10 speaker audio system with 277 watt output, including Centerpoint® surround system and AudioPilot® noise compensation
• Three-zone heating and air conditioning system with dual front and independent rear control
• Rain sensor and auto light systems
• AUX jack for connecting MP3 players and playing music on car’s audio system
• Advanced keyless entry and start system
• Power windows front and back
• Power liftgate can be operated with card key
 • Privacy glass
• Theft alarm system

First launched in North America in 2007, Mazda CX-9 was praised as a new crossover SUV that combined a sleek and sporty look and an exhilarating driving experience with high quality, generous space and practical flexibility.  Mazda’s first three-row SUV has been a hit since then with customers and experts alike – winning North America’s coveted 2008 Truck of the Year award, which includes medium/large SUVs – and selling more than 53,000 units globally up to June 2008.

The secret to this success has been an outstanding package that befits a Mazda flagship SUV.  CX-9 combines great looks, room for up to six to travel in comfort and style, fun driving attributes and a great specification (depending on market) including a new 3.7-litre V6 engine coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode, and an Active Torque-Split All-Wheel Drive system that ensures great traction in all road conditions.  This package makes it a highly appealing alternative in the medium/large SUV segment.

Exterior Design – Emotional Appeal and Prestige
Mazda CX-9 provides SUV roominess and comfort for six on the inside, with a sleek appearance that has high emotional appeal.  This effect is created by a silhouette with a steep windscreen angle, thin tapered windows, large fenders and a rising belt line.  At the front, the new CX-9 emphasises power and build quality with a big front bumper, sleek headlamps with silver-look edges that wrap into the fenders, and a sculptured bonnet.  The rear design features a five-point rear window and a large rear bumper for stability and strength.  To this look it adds sporty touches like a roof spoiler, dual trapezoidal exhaust pipes and, in profile, 10-spoke, 20-inch diameter alloy wheels (depending on market).  Intriguing details like the silver-look mouldings for the lamps, the chrome used for the front grille bar and front intake areas and available turning signals in the door mirrors – all add a sense of prestige to owning a new Mazda CX-9.

Interior Design – Roominess and Quality
Despite looking more like a sports car than an SUV on the outside, on the inside Mazda CX-9 uses its full size – with a length of 5,089 mm, a width of 1,936 mm and height of 1,728 mm – to deliver SUV roominess, high quality craftsmanship and premium materials.  Occupants are greeted by decorative, wood-like embellishments on each side of the centre console and at both ends of the dashboard.  The cockpit has an instrument cluster with black-out meters, indirect illumination and silver rings.  Its leather seats (depending on market and grade) have a sporty look, are firm and durable, with high-quality stitching and are matched to trim materials with superior quality feel and silver accents throughout the cabin.  Two interior colour packages are available, in either black or sand.

Comfort, Functionality & Equipment – Fun to be in and Use
The new Mazda CX-9 offers a long list of standard features.  This includes an all-new 3.7-litre V6 petrol engine coupled to a 6-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode and Active Torque-Split all-wheel drive.  Also available (depending on market) are a burglar alarm, privacy glass, power windows front and back, power adjustable and heated front seats and driver’s seat memory function (for up to five settings).  Other available features include three-zone heating and air conditioning, a premium BOSE®, 10 speaker 277 W audio system with Centerpoint® surround system and AudioPilot® noise compensation, rain sensor and auto light systems, and an Advanced keyless entry and start system (for unlocking all four doors automatically from outside the car).  The card key also operates the power rear liftgate.  Combine the high level of craftsmanship and the build quality of Mazda’s flagship SUV, and you have an overall package that stands out in the SUV market.

Superior NVH for a Quiet Cabin
All these features can be enjoyed to the fullest, because CX- 9’s cabin is designed to be quiet and relaxing, even at cruising speed on the motorway.  Its new V6 engine and automatic transmission are smooth and quiet (see Powertrain below).  Noise-suppressing foam is applied at 22 locations in the body shell – the most of any Mazda vehicle ever – and various structural technologies which effectively dampen road and wind noise from reaching the cabin are employed.

Roominess, Comfort and Seat Variability
The dynamic exterior of the Mazda CX-9 is not achieved by sacrificing SUV comfort and seat flexibility.  With one of the segment’s longest wheelbases (2,875 mm), the Mazda CX- 9 offers space for a maximum of six people.  The cockpit is designed to support this by being easy to use and practical.  The steering wheel is both rake and reach adjustable.  The leather driver’s seat is power adjustable for slide and height, has electric lumbar support adjustment and a seat position memory system that can store up to three different driving positions and two additional positions using the two card keys – and the front passenger seat is power adjustable as well. 

The shift lever of the six-speed automatic transmission is positioned high at the front of the floor console where it can be easily operated in either automatic or manual modes, and the steering wheel has audio controls and cruise control buttons (depending on market).  This is combined with large and comfortable back seats that can be folded individually to create a large load space.  There is even a handy strap at the back of both third row seats that lets you fold them into the floor and lets you pull them back up again.  And practical storage compartments can be found everywhere in the cabin.  There is a large front floor console that comes with an auxiliary jack (AUX) for hooking up and playing an MP3 player using the car’s premium audio system.  A 12-volt power outlet can be used to recharge the batteries of your notebook, mobile phone and other electrical equipment.

Powertrain – Smooth and Powerful
The powertrain for the Mazda CX-9 was chosen specifically to back-up the vehicle’s high quality look and feel with an exhilarating yet sophisticated driving experience.  Under the bonnet is a new MZI 3.7-litre V6 petrol engine that produces 204 kW/273 hp (SAE-NET) of maximum power at 6,250 rpm, and a robust 366 Nm of torque at 4,250 rpm – making it the most powerful engine in Mazda’s line-up.

This 60° V6 short-stroke unit has a die-cast aluminium block with cast-in iron cylinder lines and aluminium cylinder heads – for minimal weight and high durability – and it adds advanced engine technologies to optimally combine performance with acceptable fuel consumption.  These include sequential valve timing (S-VT) for optimised engine torque at all speeds.  It also has a high compression ratio (10.3:1) and electronic throttle control, which helps provides instant response to accelerator pedal input for lots of driving fun.  Two catalytic converters make sure the Mazda CX-9 meets Euro Stage IV emission standards.

Yet despite its fun-to-drive nature, the CX-9 has low NVH levels for a crossover SUV.  To achieve this, a highly rigid cylinder block is used to reduce engine vibration, the side frame engine mounts are reinforced to reduce transmission vibration, and the forged-steel crankshaft has a dual-mass damper for smooth operation.  Camshaft vibration is kept to a minimum by the use of sprockets with rubber cushion rings, and the intake manifold is designed to reduce intake air undulation and resistance.

Six-Speed Automatic Transmission with Manual Shift Mode
These engine technologies are combined with a six-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode as standard equipment.  This transmission provides an optimal balance between acceleration, driving comfort and quietness.  Broad gear ratios ensure lively acceleration and smooth, powerful cruising speeds, while the top two gears are overdrive ratios, which help save fuel when driving on the motorway.  In automatic mode, it delivers a sporty shift feel and quick response to pedal input, and near manual-like shift characteristics in manual shift modes, for the best of both worlds.

Chassis & Safety – Responsive and Safe
Mazda CX-9’s stiff body shell and chassis systems – combined with the smooth, cultivated power of its V6 engine – make for an exciting Mazda-style driving experience not usually found on an SUV this size.  And these superior dynamic attributes play a major role in making the CX-9 something very special in its class.

Zoom-Zoom Handling
The CX-9 body shell is a highly rigid structure with multiple cross members under the floor, a reinforced upper body area at the C-pillar, a high-tensile steel B-pillar and special roof reinforcements.  This structure is made even more robust by the incorporation of additional seat frames between the cross members on the floor and by the use of more laser spot welds and weld bonds than most of its competitors.  All these measures result in high torsional and flexural rigidity, which delivers superior stability and Zoom-Zoom handling – without making Mazda’s flagship SUV unduly heavy.

Its MacPherson strut front suspension is supported on a 6-point rubber mounted sub-frame.  This gives strong support and a sharp, linear feel to its hydraulic power assisted rack-and-pinion steering system.  The multi-link rear suspension employs one trailing arm and two lateral locating members on each side, and a rear sub-frame with two rubber mounts on each side.  The connecting points of the trailing arms are placed higher than usual, which further improves their stability during braking.  The link layout is optimised to provide consistent wheel alignment when external forces are acting on the rear suspension, for predictable handling.

Superior Traction – Mazda’s Active Torque-Split All-Wheel Drive
A main contributor to the predictable handling of the CX-9 is its Active Torque-Split All-Wheel Drive system that provides good traction in all road situations.  Based on the system used by the CX-7, it monitors road conditions, ABS/DSC operating conditions, individual wheel speed and engine operations to optimise torque between the front and rear wheels – with a torque split between 100:0% and 50:50% front/rear.  Depending on these factors, the system automatically selects snow mode or normal mode, and torque is distributed to the front and rear wheels by the coupling unit for optimised traction.

High Levels of Safety
Mazda CX-9 is also one of the safest SUVs.  Active safety features include a high seating position for great all around visibility, large diameter front and rear ventilated disc brakes (320 mm and 325 mm respectively) combined with roll stability control (RSC), ABS, emergency brake assist (EBA), electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and DSC (depending on market and grade).

The foundation for CX-9’s passive safety system is its body shell.  Using high-tensile steel and large-section body members, it disperses impact energy away from the passengers and keeps body deformation to a minimum during a collision.  Also onboard is a special front sub-frame extension designed to help prevent the front of the CX-9 from climbing up the front of an on-coming vehicle in a head-on collision.  Passengers are further protected by front, side and full length (three-row) curtain airbags (depending on market and grade), three-point seat belts with pretensioners and load-limiters for the front seats, a collapsible brake pedal and specially designed front head restraints that help reduce possible whiplash neck injuries during a rear impact. 

No wonder the Mazda CX-9 received the highest possible ranking of five stars on frontal and side impact crash testing from the U.S. government’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and a four-star rollover resistance rating.


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