The Mazda CX-90 will have its global debut at the end of the month. But that’s not going to stop the carmaker from issuing relentless teasers building up to that point. We aren’t treated to a full view of the upcoming rear-wheel-drive SUV, but there’s far more here than we’ve seen from previous teasers.
Not surprisingly, it appears to closely resemble a larger European-market CX-60. A closeup of the front fascia reveals Mazda’s a similarly shaped lower opening beneath Mazda’s signature five-sided grille. As on the CX-60, the outer corners of that corporate crest blend with the headlight elements, with DRLs slicing into the neighboring brightwork.
There are differences as well. The CX-90’s sides look to be more sculpted, perhaps because designers had more width to play with. Its grille is composed of staggered vertical bars rather than horizontal ones on the CX-60. The bigger brother’s vents on either side of the main opening are integrated much better with the fascia than the deep gouges on the CX-60. There’s also more chrome all around, on the front lower lip and the rocker panels.
Thankfully there’s no CX-30 black plastic cladding. However, Mazda seems to have hidden some body-colored cladding over all the wheel arches, like on some newer versions of the CX-5.
Powertrain Performance Manager Jay Chen describes how engineers eliminated the traditional automatic transmission’s large, bell-shaped torque converter to make the engine and gearbox unit more compact. Like on the CX-60, the eight-speed will use multi-plate clutches, planetary gears, and an integrated electric motor. Beyond the advantages to quicker shifting, it also lets the engine sit further back against the transmission tunnel. “That opened up some of the space for the front area to have more steering angle, proper sports car suspension,” Chen explains in the video.
Those are the key takeaways, but the video also shows craftsmen assembling an entire CX-90. Its parts start out in a stack of boxes, hence the “unboxing” title of the video. Hosting the exercise is actor Hiroyuki Sanada, who viewers may recognize from “Westworld, The Last Samurai,” as Scorpion in the latest iteration of “Mortal Kombat,” and his many roles in Japanese-language films.
The global reveal of the CX-90 takes place at noon Eastern on January 31.