A Mazda 6 Diesel Might Finally Make It to the U.S.
All-wheel drive is also in the works.
At the 2019 New York auto show, Mazda finally made the availability of a diesel engine on the CX-5 official. The engine is a 2.2-liter sequentially turbocharged inline-four making 168 horsepower and 290 lb-ft of torque that's spent years in development in an attempt to meet U.S. emissions regulations without urea injection. (Spoiler: It has urea injection now.) It will only be available on the Signature trim and come standard with all-wheel drive. Before ending the presentation, Jeff Guyton, the new president of Mazda North American Operations, announced that the automaker is also planning to bring the oil-burner to the Mazda 6 midsize sedan, as well as all-wheel drive.
"[The CX-5 diesel] is the ideal vehicle for enthusiastic drivers seeking higher mileage for long-distance adventures or outdoor enthusiasts who want low-end torque for carrying heavy loads on hilly climbs," Guyton said at Mazda's press conference. "So as Mazda continues our climb toward premium, we will offer more powertrain choices that customers expect, and diesel is such an option, and for that reason, we are working to bring diesel with all-wheel drive also to our beautiful Mazda 6. So please stay tuned for that."
Mazda originally announced the availability of a diesel engine on the Mazda 6 back when the current-generation model made its U.S. debut at the 2013 Los Angeles show (and we even drove a prototype and raced a diesel-powered 6, too). However, the engine faced those regulatory challenges and its chances of coming Stateside slimmed down even more thanks to Volkswagen's diesel-emissions cheating scandal. Two refreshes and six years later, Mazda casually revealed that the Mazda 6 will be the second U.S.-market vehicle to get the Skyactiv-D engine. As long as the feds give the OK, that is.
Last year, we found crash test ratings for an all-wheel-drive-equipped Mazda6 on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's website. Originally we suspected that Mazda intended to pair it with its 250-hp 2.5-liter turbo-four, but now we know the Japanese automaker plans to offer four-wheel traction with the diesel engine. It's not yet known whether the all-wheel-drive system will be made available on cars powered by the naturally aspirated and turbocharged gas engine options, but we expect the diesel-powered Mazda6 with all-wheel drive to arrive as part of the 2020 model year update, assuming all the emissions hurdles are cleared.