2018 Mazda CX-5 Skyactiv-D Diesel Confirmed for U.S.
Model will be Mazda’s First Diesel Offering in U.S. Since 1984
With the introduction of the new Mazda6 midsize sedan and CX-5 crossover in for 2014, it initially appeared that a return of a diesel to Mazda’s U.S. lineup was imminent. Yet, month after month and year after year went by with vague statements along the lines of “we’re still working on it” and “it’s still in the plans.” Many had given up hope of the torquey, free-revving Skyactiv-D of ever making it to the U.S., thinking Mazda had secretly euthanized the project altogether. But it appears all hope is not lost. At the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show, Mazda has officially announced that the 2018 CX-5 crossover will receive the 2.2L Skyactiv-D I-4 turbodiesel engine that has been a hit in overseas markets.
Details such as output, fuel economy, and whether or not it will employ urea fluid selective catalyst reduction (SCR) remain unanswered. A few factors probably tipped the scales in favor of Mazda offering the Skyactiv-D. The Volkswagen emissions scandal almost singlehandedly removed the once 800-pound gorilla from the light diesel market, and so far, VW has not announced any major plans to try to reintroduce the TDI in the U.S. in the immediate future. Secondly, Chevrolet’s announcement that it will offer the 2018 Equinox with an optional 1.6L diesel opens up a large and growing segment to diesel powertrains.
The higher-output 2.2L Skyactiv-D in overseas markets produces 173 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. We expect the U.S. model will have slightly lower output to meet strict U.S. emissions requirements. However, more than 160 hp and 300 lb-ft of torque are likely. The CX-5 will be the first diesel that Mazda has sold in more than 30 years, the last being the B2200 diesel pickup in 1984.