For 2022, the CX-8 is getting a pretty substantial upgrade, giving buyers a choice of two additional engines instead of just a single naturally-aspirated 2.5-litre SkyActiv petrol unit available since launch.
Introduced alongside the launch of the MX-30 BEV electric crossover, the Mazda CX-8 range now has triple the engine count as well as two new variants that, at the high end, bridge the gap between it and the venerable (but merely 5-seat in Malaysia) flagship CX-9, which arrives fully imported from Japan.
Going forward, the locally-assembled (Kulim, Kedah) 2022 model year CX-8 will comprise 5 variants, with on-the-road prices excluding insurance as follows:
These two new mills aren’t new to Mazda, nor even the second-generation CX-5 that the CX-8 is based on. Starting with the 2.2-litre SkyActiv-D turbodiesel, it generates 188hp at 4,500rpm and 450Nm from 2,000rpm. As has been proven in its other applications, no other engine from the Japanese automaker beats it for sheer pulling power.
At the helm of 2022’s revised CX-8 range is the 2.5T motor, lifted straight out of the CX-9. With 228hp and 420Nm of torque, this turbocharged petrol engine even develops the exact same output as the one found in the more expensive SUV. All variants share the 6-speed SkyActiv-Drive automatic transmission with shift paddles.
What’s more, to help distribute power, it even gains all-wheel-drive traction. Mazda isn’t disclosing how much more accelerative the juiced-up CX-8 range-topper is but we expect it to be a pretty brisk 7ish seconds.
New to this year’s refreshed range and standard on all variants is Mazda’s G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) which builds upon the original GVC system to improve overall driving comfort by strategically, though almost imperceptibly intervening via small Traction Control and torque vectoring adjustments to reduce lateral movement forces and fatigue upon the occupants, leading to a more composed and stable ride.
While the full spec rundown remains fairly similar between this 2022 revision and the outgoing CX-8, this newer car can be differentiated by an updated front-end treatment for variants in ‘High’ and ‘High Plus’ trim lines (basically 4 of the 5 variants), gaining a gunmetal accented finish and chrome bumper garnish, LED Signature headlamps, as well as a wireless smartphone charger to work with the wirelessly connected Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.
Perhaps more significantly, they also receive heated and ventilated front seats (in leather, of course) as well as an updated i-Activsense active safety suite which now includes adaptive headlights with high beam control, Smart Brake Support (AEB) for the front, and rear, and Mazda Radar Cruise Control with stop and go.
As before, each CX-8 comes with Mazda’s 5-year manufacturer’s warranty with inclusive 5-year free maintenance (or up to 100,000km whichever comes first). Exterior colour options include Platinum Quartz, Polymetal Gray, Soul Red Crystal, Machine Gray, Snowflake White Pearl, Deep Crystal Blue, and Jet Black.
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