While the Highlander, Explorer, Telluride and Palisade are direct rivals, the CX-90 can also be as well-equipped as the Acura MDX, Buick Enclave, Infiniti QX60, Jeep Grand Cherokee L, and even Cadillac’s XT6 and Lincoln’s Aviator.

Mazda has received more than 10,000 dealer preorders for the crossover, and expects U.S. sales to top out at around 90,000 — triple the typical volume of the CX-9.

A sporty alternative to the CX-90, the CX-70, will be based on the same platform and launch in the fall, with combined sales of the two targeted at 120,000 annually.

Stephanie Brinley, associate director of auto intelligence at S&P Global Mobility, said the CX-90 allows Mazda to move in a direction the brand needs to target: more profitable vehicles in core segments.

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