Automotive

Mazda tackles turbo lag in new CX-9 SUV

Mazda tackles turbo lag in new...
The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
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The Mazda CX-9 on show in Los Angeles
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The Mazda CX-9 on show in Los Angeles
The SUV draws on Mazda's Kodo design philosophy
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The SUV draws on Mazda's Kodo design philosophy
Power comes from a 2.5-liter turbo petrol engine
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Power comes from a 2.5-liter turbo petrol engine
Mazda has worked hard to cut the CX-9's weight, resulting in the the new SUV being 90 kg (198 lb) lighter than its predecessor in all-wheel drive trim
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Mazda has worked hard to cut the CX-9's weight, resulting in the the new SUV being 90 kg (198 lb) lighter than its predecessor in all-wheel drive trim
The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
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The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
The CX-9 is 130 kg lighter than its predecessor, in front-wheel drive trim
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The CX-9 is 130 kg lighter than its predecessor, in front-wheel drive trim
The car's all-wheel drive system calculates how much torque should be sent to each wheel based on input from 27 sensors
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The car's all-wheel drive system calculates how much torque should be sent to each wheel based on input from 27 sensors
The CX-9 will be available with a range of active safety features, including blind spot monitoring and radar cruise control
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The CX-9 will be available with a range of active safety features, including blind spot monitoring and radar cruise control
The car shares more than a passing resemblance with the CX-3 we drove earlier in the year
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The car shares more than a passing resemblance with the CX-3 we drove earlier in the year
Mazda's engineers have worked hard to make sure the car still feels light on its feet
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Mazda's engineers have worked hard to make sure the car still feels light on its feet
The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
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The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
Inside, the focus was on using quality materials on all the touchpoints
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Inside, the focus was on using quality materials on all the touchpoints
The new CX-9's interior features an 8-inch screen in the center
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The new CX-9's interior features an 8-inch screen in the center
Rear seat passengers are well looked after in the CX-9
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Rear seat passengers are well looked after in the CX-9
Mazda's infotainment system is one of the best in the business
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Mazda's infotainment system is one of the best in the business
The CX-9's interior design draws on the rest of the range, but is aimed at upmarket drivers
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The CX-9's interior design draws on the rest of the range, but is aimed at upmarket drivers
Mazda hasn't revealed details about pricing yet
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Mazda hasn't revealed details about pricing yet
View gallery - 17 images

Mazda might have stolen the show in Tokyo with its gorgeous RX-Vision Coupe, but it's back to business as usual for the Japanese brand in Los Angeles. Instead of launching a slinky rotary concept, Mazda has taken the covers off its new CX-9 SUV. Designed to ferry the kids to school in style, the CX-9 will be powered by a 2.5-liter engine debuting new turbo technology that cuts down on lag.

Just like the little CX-3 we reviewed earlier in the year, the new CX-9 is a seriously handsome car. Mazda's Kodo design philosophy has been adapted to look more upmarket, but there's a clear family resemblance in the car's squinting headlamps and big chrome grille.

The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas
The engine features technology that cools and recirculates exhaust gas

Under the hood is a 2.5-liter turbocharged petrol engine, which debuts new technology that cuts down on turbo lag by changing the degree of exhaust pulsation across the rev range. A set of valves, which is located before the turbine that drives the turbocharger, reduces the volume of the exhaust ports below 1,620 rpm to reduce interference between exhaust pulses and maximize the energy of each pulse to more effectively drive the turbine.

That's not the only bit of tech Mazda has used to improve engine, there's a cooled gas recirculation system, too. The system takes some of the inert exhaust gas that the engine produces, reducing the temperature and feeding it back into the air intake.

According to Mazda, the system helps to reduce engine temperatures from over 500° C (932° F) to just over 100° C (212° F), allowing the engine to run with a compression ratio of 10.5:1 – high for a petrol-powered turbo engine.

Mazda's engineers have worked hard to make sure the car still feels light on its feet
Mazda's engineers have worked hard to make sure the car still feels light on its feet

In spite of all this tech, the CX-9 isn't particularly powerful, with 169 kW (227 hp) and 420 Nm of torque from just 2,000 rpm. It's worth keeping in mind, though, that the new CX-9 is 90 kg (198 lb) lighter than its predecessor in all-wheel drive trim and 130 kg (287 lb) lighter in front-wheel drive trim, so that engine has less mass to push.

Because Mazda is aiming upmarket with its new big SUV, the car will be jam-packed with active safety technology. That translates to blind spot monitoring, radar cruise control, lane keeping assist, auto emergency braking and a system that reduces the severity of city crashes.

Mazda has also fitted the CX-9 with an active all-wheel drive system that collates information from 27 different sensors to create an accurate picture of road conditions and shuffles torque between the wheels as necessary.

The CX-9 is on display at the Los Angeles Motor Show.

Source: Mazda

View gallery - 17 images
3 comments
StephenTerlizzi
The HP and Torque numbers you quoted are with 87 octane gas... yes, you can put 87 octane in it. If you use premium, HP rises to 250 HP and 310 lb/ft torque at 2,000 RPM. I have read that in numerous articles describing the way the new turbo engine in the CX-9 works. I think that pretty much says use premium if you get AWD, and your choice, depending on performance you want, with FWD.
PaulRuff
I would liked price and the auto stopping info.
nedge2k
Considering you can reliably get 150-200bhp per litre from a turbo engine, 100bhp per litre in this day and age is quite underwhelming. Can only assume it's all down to emissions.