The exterior design of the new Mazda6 is likely to be inspired by the Vision Coupe Concept.
The exterior design of the new Mazda6 is likely to be inspired by the Vision Coupe Concept.

Next Mazda6 to get rear-wheel drive and six-cylinder engine - report

By Motoring Staff Time of article published Apr 14, 2020

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Hiroshima, Japan - Last year it emerged that Mazda was developing a brand new rear-wheel-drive platform and a longitudinal straight six engine line-up to go with it, and now it appears that the first benefactor of this upmarket architecture will be the next-generation Mazda6.

This is according to Car and Driver magazine, which reports that the new and more upmarket Mazda6 was likely to hit the scene in late 2022, assuming there aren’t any delays brought about the Covid-19 pandemic.

Not only will it adopt a rear-wheel drive layout, but the new inline six-cylinder petrol engine could also power various Lexus models through Mazda’s recent tie-up with Toyota, the US publication said.

It could be a relatively powerful engine too, with various sourced mentioning numbers in the region of 260kW, Car and Driver added. 

Mazda first revealed the plans for its new RWD architecture a year ago, inconspicuously hidden on the 25th page of its financial results presentation. The document mentions an all-wheel-drive option too, but it’s not clear whether this will be standard or simply fitted to the top models.

It also revealed plans for a six-cylinder diesel engine to complement the petrol unit. The petrol version, meanwhile, would adopt Mazda’s Skyactiv-X compression-ignition technology, which is a world first for petrol engines.

Mazda Vision Coupe Concept.

At this stage, it’s not clear what other models could be built around the new RWD architecture, but given the popularity of SUVs these days we’d be surprised if there wasn’t at least one crossover on the agenda. A successor to the Mazda CX-7 perhaps? Now that’s an interesting thought.

One thing is for certain though - these new Mazda models will be positioned more upmarket in terms of pricing, with the aforementioned financial document also revealing that Mazda planned to forge its way into higher price brackets.

Watch this space for more information on the new Mazda models as it become available.

IOL Motoring

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