After a drawn-out tease, Mazda has finally unveiled its critical 2020 BT-50 dual-cab ute.

It goes on sale for Australia towards the end of 2020, at which point it will go head-to-head with the powered-up Toyota HiLux, all-new Isuzu D-Max, and the current best-sellers from Ford and Mitsubishi.

While the previous-generation of the BT-50 sat on the same Ford T6 platform as the Ranger, Mazda has teamed up with Isuzu for its latest dual-cab ute – not a bad idea, given Isuzu’s reputation in the ute scene.

This preliminary batch of information is expected to be followed by more details in the coming months.

New Mazda BT-50 key details

  • On sale in Australia late in 2020
  • The BT-50 will be powered by a 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine producing 140kW of power and 450Nm of torque
  • It packs a 3500kg braked towing capacity
  • There’s a payload over 1000kg
  • A full suite of active safety features comes standard

New BT-50 Design

The new BT-50 features a look inspired by the Mazda Kodo design concept. It packs full-LED headlights across the range with a thin, cylindrical lamp shape mimicked in the rear combination lamps.

There’s a lot of Mazda CX-9 in the front end with a four slat grille, chrome highlights, and narrow LED headlights.

At the rear, the Mazda badge is proudly worn alongside BT-50 branding and a chrome tailgate handle.

The BT-50 will launch with three wheel designs ranging from 16- to 18-inches in size, along with seven exterior colours.

The exterior colours are called Gunblue Mica, Concrete Grey Mica, Red Volcano Mica, True Black Mica, Ingot Silver Metallic, Ice White, and Rock Grey Mica. Soul Red doesn’t feature, by the looks of it.

The cabin the design appears to mimic the Isuzu D-Max for the most part, with Mazda even retaining the Isuzu 9.0-inch tablet style infotainment system, which comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Grab handles are integrated into the a-pillar for off-road enthusiasts and to help entry and egress from the cabin.

New BT-50 engine details

Officially, Mazda has only confirmed the power and torque outputs of its new engine.

It’s a 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine producing 140kW of power and 450Nm of torque, likely to be mated with a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.

It’s worth noting the new Mazda BT-50 engine will be a downgrade for customers in terms of power and torque. The outgoing model uses a 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbo-diesel with 147kW of power and 470Nm of torque.

Mazda says the new BT-50 is lighter, which is likely to cover up the slightly lower torque figure.

The BT-50 is also expected to also pick up the rear differential lock now fitted to the Isuzu D-Max, along with an improved wading depth of 800mm.

New BT-50 safety technology

Isuzu and Mazda have worked to include a raft of active safety technology that will all be fitted as standard equipment to the BT-50.

This includes autonomous emergency braking, rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, and lane-departure assistant.

A move to an electrically-assisted steering rack (instead of the hydraulic unit used in the outgoing Mazda BT-50) will mean a likely inclusion of semi-autonomous parking, which is available on the D-Max.

Both the front and rear will now also be covered by parking sensors, backed by a reversing camera.

New BT-50 interior

In addition to a 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the new BT-50 picks up dual-zone climate control, and the option of perforated leather sports seats.

Ahead of the driver is a 4.2-inch LCD screen displaying a trip computer, a digital speedometer, and other critical vehicle information.

Expected to be available with the Mazda BT-50 locally is a function allowing the driver to remotely start the vehicle to commence cabin heating or cooling, a nice touch on a roasting summer day.

Automatic headlights and wipers appear to be standard, along with a proximity entry and start system.

Unlike other proximity keys, this one allows the driver to simply walk up to the vehicle and it will unlock when the key is within two metres of the car and subsequently lock the vehicle when the key is more than three metres away.

When does the new BT-50 launch in Australia?

Mazda says the all-new BT-50 will launch locally during Q4 of 2020 and will launch locally with a dual-cab before expanding the range down the track.

Pricing is still to be confirmed, but as a reference the current Mazda BT-50 range starts from just under $30,000 before on-road costs and runs all the way through to just over $63,000 plus on-roads.

What do you think of the all-new Mazda BT-50? Is it an improvement over the outgoing model?

Paul Maric

Paul Maric is an Australian car expert based in Melbourne, Australia. Paul is a founder of & formerly part of the CarAdvice founding team.

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