MAZDA has introduced new front-wheel-drive versions of its CX-9, making the big, seven-seater SUV cheaper to buy and run.
The Japanese brand cut the price on its CX-9 SUV in response to recently updated competitors including the Ford Territory and Holden Captiva7.
The entry-level CX-9 Classic is now priced from $44,425 plus costs, a drop of $5590 over the previous all-wheel-drive Classic it replaces. While it loses the traction benefits of AWD, the Classic features 18-inch alloys, auto headlights, cruise control, tri-zone climate control and leather-trimmed steering wheel and gear knob.
Mazda will also offer the mid-range Luxury model in front-wheel-drive. Priced at $51,725, the Luxury model gains 20-inch alloys, sunroof, heated mirrors, power-adjustable leather seats with memory function, and a 10-speaker Bose stereo.
Mazda is also offering the option of an integrated 7-inch touch screen sat-nav system with Bluetooth audio streaming for $2600.
However, buyers will have to pay several thousand dollars more than before for an all-wheel-drive CX-9, which now starts at $56,225.
Higher trim levels of the all-wheel-drive CX-9 models mean slight drops in pricing further up the range, with the Luxury AWD with Satnav dropping by $790 and the Grand Touring by $1027.
Front-wheel-drive CX-9 models retain the same 3.7-litre V6 engine and six-speed automatic transmission as the rest of the range, although removing the extra mechanicals and weight from the rear of the car mean fuel consumption drops slightly from 11.2 litres per 100 kilometres to a still relatively thirsty 11.0L/100km.
The 3.7-litre V6 produces 204kW of power and 367Nm of torque.
Mazda CX-9 line-up:
- Classic FWD $44,425
- Luxury FWD $51,725
- Luxury FWD with sat-nav $54,325
- Luxury AWD $56,225
- Luxury AWD with sat-nav $59,233
- Grand Touring AWD $62,106
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