TOKYO — Mazda’s upcoming CX-50 crossover, designed specifically for American drivers, could be the brand’s new hero nameplate, delivering record U.S. sales as Mazda moves up market.

The entry, to be built at a new factory in Alabama, is envisioned boosting North American volume by 150,000, an impressive 34 percent surge over this year’s expected sales total.

Discussing the upcoming model while announcing Mazda Motor Corp.’s financial results last week, CEO Akira Marumoto said the CX-50 will play a crucial role in securing long-term profitability at the low-volume Japanese player. Mazda will release fresh details about the CX-50 in the United States on Monday, Nov. 15, Marumoto said.

But he teased some specs, saying the CX-50 was developed for U.S. market tastes with a wider tread and bigger cargo room. On the outside, it is expected to be around the size of Mazda’s CX-5 crossover, which is currently the automaker’s best-selling vehicle in the U.S.

“While continuing to sell the CX-5, we will introduce the CX-50 in North America in an attempt to bolster and expand our SUV lineup,” Marumoto said. Last year, in the heat of the pandemic, CX-5 sales declined only 5.3 percent to 146,420, in an overall market down 14 percent.

By Mistas

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