05 May 2011 by Parkers Team

  • CX-5 compact MPV will kick off SKYACTIV range
  • Weight-cutting key to improving fuel efficiency
  • Whole Mazda range to get eco treatment

Mazda's new CX-5 will be the first of several SKYACTIV eco-models, promising low CO2 emissions and improved fuel economy, when it is launched in spring next year. 

The CX-5, a compact MPV based on the Minagi concept unveiled at Geneva Motor Show in March 2011, will kick-start the SKYACTIV technology due to feature in the whole Mazda range. 

Mazda says the CX-5 will return between 60-70mpg and emit less than 120g/km of CO2 emissions. It will be powered by a 2.2-litre 180bhp diesel engine and although the fuel-saving technology has not compromised the power output, Mazda says a reduction in torque has been the only trade-off.

A spokesman said: "The aim is to make our cars meet all our customers' needs. The SKYACTIV technology will not compromise the driving experience." 

Mazda says that rather than developing cars powered by alternative fuels such as electricity and hydrogen, it is concentrating on improving vehicles using conventional internal combustion engines.  

Reducing weight it key to the process and the Japanese company is hoping to lop off 100 kilos on all of its cars. 

It also says that improving compression ratios on all of its diesel and petrol engines has been one of its key priorities. The latest SKYACTIV petrol engine has a compression ratio of 14:1 and Mazda claims that is better than that in the latest state-of-the-art Formula One engines. 

Mazda will be cutting weight in all areas including the engine, gearbox, body and chassis. Its aim is improve the average fuel economy and CO2 emissions across its range by 30% before the end of 2015. It will also include other fuel-saving technologies such as stop/start and regenerative braking in its SKYACTIV range. 

The spokesman added: "The current internal combustion engines are only around 30% efficient - we think that by concentrating our efforts on improving this we can drastically decrease fuel consumption and CO2 emissions."

The CX-5 is expected to go on sale in spring next year but prices have not been announced yet.