Mazda fans get ready, the automaker could just be introducing a new concept Mazdaspeed3 hot hatch at the 2015 Frankfurt Auto Show this September. Even more exciting, it could potentially head into production soon thereafter. Plus, there are also rumors swirling about that Mazda will be introducing a revived three-row CX-7 SUV shortly after the new CX-9 is released.
The reports come from Motoring which claims the new Mazdaspeed3 hot hatch will have a new turbocharged 2.5-liter engine with over 295 horsepower. Also, unlike the previous Mazda3, the Mazdaspeed3 will be an all-wheel-drive. It will also herald the return of the Mazdaspeed name, which is Mazda’s performance series. It’s known as the MPS performance brand in other markets outside the U.S.
The hot hatch will act as a performance step up to the Mazda3 and is anticipated to be released with a mid-cycle update to the Mazda3 in the 2017 model year. So that means that it could be released mid-2016 as an early 2017 model.
If the new Mazdaspeed3 makes it to market, it would join fellow performance hatchbacks such as the Honda Civic Type R, Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf and Subaru WRX STI. It’s a segment that’s really starting to heat up after a few lean years, but as you might imagine, all that performance doesn’t come cheap. If the Mazdaspeed3 is priced like similar models, it could cost more than $35,000.
There’s also speculation Mazda could soon offer a step up MPS performance model of the Mazda6. However, Mazda won’t confirm anything yet.
What we do know for sure is that Mazda plans to revive the CX-7 after it launches the mid-size CX-9. The CX-7 will fall between the CX-5 and CX-9 and get seven seats, making it bigger than the last generation, and also making it competitive with the Mitsubishi Outlander, Nissan Rogue, and the Land Rover Discovery Sport. The addition of the CX-7 would expand the Mazda SUV lineup to four models which matches the current trend of automakers who are expanding their SUV lineups to meet demand and give drivers more options.
No pricing figures for the CX-7 yet, but we expect it to fall between the CX-5 and the larger CX-9, which starts at $29,985.
As for the CX-9, the second-generation model will debut this November at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show and marks the first complete redesign of the model. It will face tough competition from the Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot.