While we await the belated arrival of the CX-30 compact family car in South Africa, Mazda is reportedly planning to unveil a CX-50 (possibly based on an all-new platform) that will either replace – or complement – the award-winning CX-5.
Japanese website Spyder7 recently reported that Mazda had registered a whole string of names from "CX-10" through to "CX-90" with the European Patent Office, which suggests that the Hiroshima-based firm is planning to roll out a host of more stylised, coupe-like crossovers (as well as replacements for its various current SUV ranges). It does makes sense… with the traditional sedan and hatchback markets dwindling, Mazda is evidently seeking to futureproof its product line (at least as best as it can).
But whereas the coupe-SUV variants of (primarily European) brands’ off-roader-inspired products have usually been complementary; what the Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe is to the GLC, the BMW X4 is to the X3 and the Audi Q3 Sportback is to the Audi Q3 (different body shapes based on identical platforms), Mazda has followed a somewhat different, more improvisational formula with its CX models...
This design sketch (released at the release of the CX-5 in 2017) shows Mazda's designers had coupe styling in mind all along.
For example, the CX-3 is not based on the Mazda3, but on an adapted Mazda2 platform, the current CX-5 (KF) is based on the updated architecture of its KE predecessor, while the CX-30 is based on the latest Mazda3, even though its packaging is similar to that of the aforementioned 2019/20 #CarsAwards family-car category winner.
Skip forward to: Mazda CX-30 (2019) International Launch Review
This is where things get interesting… It’s quite possible that the CX-5, which was introduced in South Africa in 2017, could be replaced by the CX-50 as part of an overhaul of the Japanese firm’s crossover/SUV line-up (which will switch to models named in increments of 10) “in late 2021 or early 2022”, the Spyder7 reported.
The CX-3 is not a coupe-SUV per see, but rather an alternative execution for Mazda's compact platform as utilised by Mazda3.
On the other hand, one would think that given the global success of the CX-5, Mazda would be best served by introducing the CX-50 as a distinctively-styled complementary variant based on the existing family car’s architecture, but with a few alterations (just like the Volkswagen Tiguan X is based on the Tiguan Allspace’s wheelbase).
Why? Because that’d be the only way we could see a CX-50 come to market before 2023. The next generation Mazda6 business class sedan and CX-5/CX-50 will reportedly be based on the new-generation rear/all-wheel drive FR architecture... and Mazda president Akira Muramoto told Automotive News it won’t be finished until March 2023.
The CX-5 2.0 Dynamic Auto was named the family car category winner in the 2019/20 #CarsAwards - powered by WesBank.
The FR (large model) platform is a major deal for the Hiroshima-based firm, because apart from the fact that its RWD and AWD applications bode well for the dynamism and all-road ability of future Mazda models, it also supports 4-cylinder turbo and inline-6 petrol and diesel engines, plus plug-in hybrid and 48V mild-hybrid powertrains.
That means, if nothing else, the next-generation CX-5/CX-50 will be available with a mild-hybrid version of the current 2.5-litre 4-cylinder engine, as well as the turbocharged version of that motor (which recently debuted in the Mazda3 Turbo, which is yet to be confirmed for markets outside of North America), the 2.2-litre turbodiesel motor, as well as a 3.0-litre inline-6 mild hybrid and, believe it or not, a 3.3-litre inline-6 turbodiesel powerplant, the Japanese site says.
This render of the anticipated CX-50 model was recently published by Japanese website Spyder7.
The artist’s impression by Response (the green-coloured car) suggests the styling of the CX-50 will be rather derivative of the CX-5’s, replete with gently-raked A- and C-pillars, a pinched waistline with 3-dimensional-effect surfacing, Kodo-inspired sportily culpted bumpers and intricate, sweeping LED headlights.
Will the CX-50 be released before the FR platform, or will the new architecture underpin an all-new replacement for the CX-5? We'll bring you updates as the story unfolds!