Mazda has had a slower rollout of electric vehicles (EVs) than the majority of legacy carmakers, but the Japanese brand is planning a new one that will adopt a familiar name.
As reported by Automotive News, Mazda North America CEO Tom Donnelly confirmed a new EV will launch in the US in 2025, adding it will be a crossover and use an existing nameplate.
This new Mazda EV will likely slot alongside the funky MX-30 Electric which was recently discontinued in the US following slow sales.
It’s unlikely the upcoming Mazda EV will be based on the CX-90 as, although it’s understood its Large Architecture underpinning can technically support all-electric powertrains, it’s “not ideal”.
The Japanese carmaker’s forthcoming EV will likely be based on the SkyActiv Scalable EV Architecture which is set to debut between 2025 and 2030.
As part of a revised “mid-term management plan” announced in 2022, Mazda intends to invest ¥1.5 trillion (~A$16 billion) to develop EVs as part of a three-phase strategy.
By 2030 Mazda expects “100 per cent of our products will have some level of electrification”, with EVs set to account for between 25 to 40 per cent of its global sales.
Currently, its only EV – the MX-30 – shares its platform with the petrol-powered CX-30, not to mention mild-hybrid petrol MX-30s.
The company’s Chinese joint venture, Changan Mazda, recently teased two upcoming models – potentially sedans – that will offer a choice of plug-in hybrid and electric powertrains.
It’s unclear what platform these will use, and if they’ll be based on existing models – Mazda in China, for example, sells an electric version of the CX-30.
In the meantime, Mazda’s new Large Architecture vehicles, including the CX-60 and CX-90, will offer entirely electrified powertrain line-ups comprising mild-hybrid petrol and diesel engines and plug-in hybrids.
The plug-in hybrid CX-90 is due here in the second half of 2024.
While Mazda offers a range of mild-hybrid vehicles and will soon have at least two plug-in hybrids, ‘conventional’ hybrids are the missing piece of the puzzle – at least in Australia.
In China, Mazda has revealed a version of its mid-sized CX-50 crossover with hybrid technology from Toyota.