Here’s something you’ll probably find just as unusual as I do: In America, where we love SUVs, where we buy SUVs by the bushel, where our unquenchable thirst for SUVs makes us seem like we’re a nation that’s been collectively walking through an SUV desert for the last 20 years, Mazda does not sell all their SUVs.
I discovered this a few days ago when I was having dinner with my friend Filippo, whose Kia Spectra I ran over back in June. Filippo told me there’s a Mazda CX-4 and a Mazda CX-8 available for sale in foreign markets. As usual, I did not believe Filippo. As usual, I was wrong.
Here’s what I learned: Mazda does, indeed, sell a CX-4, and it’s basically a sloped-roof little “coupe” version of the CX-5 — in modern parlance, of course, not the traditional usage where “coupe” means “2-door.” It’s actually a handsome little vehicle, effectively a sportier CX-5, and I personally like it a lot. Right now, it’s built in China and it’s only offered in the Chinese market, while Americans miss out. It’s offered with a 2.0- or 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine.
The CX-8 is even more perplexing. Although Mazda sells a subcompact crossover (CX-3) here in the U.S., along with a compact crossover (CX-5) and midsize crossover (CX-9), they don’t have an entrant in the segment that includes the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Nissan Murano and Ford Edge — basically, the midsize crossover that’s smaller than the increasingly large “midsize” crossover. But they do make such a vehicle, and it’s called the CX-8 — but it’s only offered in Japan. Once again, no U.S. sales for this thing.
I’m surprised by all this. BMW makes six SUVs; they sell all six in the United States. Most other automakers sell basically every SUV they make in the United States — and many make SUVs specifically for the U.S. market, even if they’re foreign brands. Meanwhile, Mazda seems to be ducking away from selling these two perfectly marketable SUVs here in the U.S. market, despite our apparent love for all things SUV and crossover. Find a Mazda SUV for sale
Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.
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