Mazda’s flagship, the CX-9, has a new flagship model itself, while also gaining an additional couple of variants and a larger infotainment screen.
The updated model goes on sale early next year.
UPDATE, 17/12/20 2:30pm: An earlier version of this article said the new 10.25-inch screen would be standard across the range. The Sport and Touring, however, will retain their old touchscreens.
It replaces the 9.0-inch touchscreens in the GT and up and is controlled via a rotary dial.
Sport and Touring models will retain their 7.0- and 9.0-inch screens with touch functionality, running the older MZD Connect system.
Slotting in above the Azami is the new Azami LE, the only CX-9 variant to offer second-row captain’s chairs. Separated by a centre console, these are individually power-adjustable, heated and ventilated.
Both it and the Azami feature quilted Nappa leather upholstery for the first two rows, as well as redesigned aluminium interior trim.
They’re also distinguished from the 2020 Azami through the use of a new 20-inch alloy wheel design and a brighter titanium grey finish for the grille and exhaust outlets.
Another new trim level is the GT SP, which takes the mid-range GT and gives it a sportier appearance.
There’s a dark gunmetal grille, black mirror caps, and black 20-inch alloy wheels, while inside there’s black interior trim, red stitching on the steering wheel, door trims, centre console and armrests, and burgundy leather upholstery.
As with the rest of the range, Mazda will also offer the CX-9 as a 100th Anniversary Special Edition based on the all-wheel drive Azami.
Just 110 examples will be offered, each finished in pearl white paint with a burgundy Nappa leather interior that’s colour-matched to the floor mats and carpets.
The colourway harks back to Mazda’s first passenger car, the R360, though the CX-9 is a considerably larger beast.
All 2021 CX-9 variants are more expensive than 2020 models, though the price increases range from tiny – for example, $70 in the Sport – to larger, like the $1986 price-increase for the all-wheel drive Azami. That model has picked up the most new features of any returning model, however.
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Sport FWD: $45,990 (+$70)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Sport AWD: $49,990 (+$70)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Touring FWD: $53,490 (+$180)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Touring AWD: $57,490 (+$180)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 GT FWD: $62,990 (+$1270)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 GT SP FWD: $63,490
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Azami FWD: $66,190 (+$1297)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 GT AWD: $66,990 (+$1270)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 GT SP AWD: $67,490
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Azami AWD: $70,625 (+$1986)
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 100th Anniversary Special Edition: $72,575
- 2021 Mazda CX-9 Azami LE AWD: $73,875
All prices exclude on-road costs.
The 2021 Mazda CX-9 is powered by a 2.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine with 170kW of power and 420Nm of torque.
It’s mated to a six-speed automatic transmission, with the CX-9 available with a choice of front- or all-wheel drive on all trim levels except the AWD-only Azami LE.
The front-wheel drive 2021 Mazda CX-9 uses 8.4L/100km on the ADR combined city and highway cycle, while all-wheel drive models are rated at 9.0L/100km.
It requires only 91RON regular unleaded fuel.
The 2021 Mazda CX-9 measures 5075mm long, 1747mm tall, 1969mm wide, and has a 2930mm wheelbase.
The base front-wheel drive CX-9 weighs 1878kg. Adding all-wheel drive adds another 72kg, bringing the total to 1950kg.
The Mazda CX-9’s boot has a luggage capacity of 230L with all three rows up, and 810L when the third row is folded down.
The 2021 Mazda CX-9 has a five-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty and requires servicing every 12 months or 10,000km, whichever comes first.
Currently, servicing prices for the CX-9 range between $363 and $408.
The CX-9 has an ANCAP safety rating of five stars, based on testing conducted in 2016. It received an overall score of 35.87 out of 37 plus Good grades for whiplash and pedestrian protection.
All 2021 CX-9 models come with the following safety equipment:
- Front and rear autonomous emergency braking with night time pedestrian detection
- Blind spot monitoring
- Rear cross-traffic alert
- Driver attention monitoring
- Traffic sign recognition
- Lane departure warning
- Lane-keeping assist
- Front, front-side and curtain airbags
The Mazda CX-9 Sport comes with the following standard features:
- 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with satellite navigation, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
- 18-inch alloy wheels with 255/60 tyres
- Automatic LED headlights
- Rain-sensing wipers
- Power-folding exterior mirrors
- Head-up display
- Three-zone climate control with controls in the rear
- Six-speaker sound system
- DAB+ digital radio
- Push-button start
- Automatic high-beam
- Adaptive cruise control with stop and go
- Reversing camera with rear parking sensors
- Tilt-and-telescoping steering column
- Off-road traction assist (AWD models only)
Moving up to the CX-9 Touring adds:
- 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with satellite navigation, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
- Paddle shifters
- LED fog lights
- Leather upholstery (black)
- Keyless entry
- Front parking sensors
- Heated front seats
- Eight-way power driver’s seat
- Six-way power passenger’s seat
- Rear centre armrest with storage and USB ports
- One-touch tip and slide switch for second row
The CX-9 GT adds:
- 10.25-inch infotainment system with satellite navigation, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
- Qi wireless smart phone charging
- 20-inch alloy wheels with 255/55 tyres
- Hands-free power tailgate
- Power tilt-and-slide sunroof
- Leather seats (black, natural stone or beige)
- 12-speaker 294W Bose sound system
- 10-way power driver’s seat with memory
- Heated second row seats (outboard only)
- Third-row USB ports
The CX-9 GT SP adds:
- Leather seats (burgundy)
- Red interior highlights
- Dark gunmetal grille
- Black mirror caps
- Black 20-inch alloy wheels
Over the GT, the Azami adds:
- Adaptive LED headlights
- Windscreen de-icer
- 7.0-inch information display
- Heated steering wheel
- Frameless rear-view mirror
- Ventilated front seats
- Surround-view camera
- Real wood trim
- LED centre console ambient lighting
- Quilted Nappa leather upholstery (brown or white nappa leather)
The CX-9 Azami LE has the same leather interior options as the Azami and adds:
- Power-adjustable, heated and ventilated second-row captain’s chairs
- Second-row centre console