Mazda Delays Entry into U.S. Diesel Market

By Paul Riegler on 10 January 2014
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The 2014 Mazda Mazda6

The 2014 Mazda Mazda6

Just a few days before the start of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, announced it will once again delay the introduction of its SkyActiv-D models.

In 2013, Mazda, somewhat following in the footsteps of several other automakers that were about to introduce a diesel lineup to the U.S. market, entered two Mazda6 diesel sedans in the grueling Rolex 24 (also known as the 24 Hours of Daytona) race.  The automaker originally announced it would begin to sell an oilburner Mazda6 towards the end of 2013 as a 2014 model.

It later changed the planned launch date to Spring 2014.

On Thursday, Mazda released a brief statement saying that the diesel launch is being “further delayed” although its engines do meet current U.S. emissions requirements.

Mazda said it wants to take more time to find “the right balance between fuel economy and Mazda-appropriate driving performance.”  It did not provide any information on when the launch might take place.

The Mazda6’s 2.2-liter four-cylinder diesel, with a compression ratio of 14:1, develops 310 pound-feet of torque (the race-car version developed 445 pound-feet) and is expected to get 44 miles per gallon (5.3 l/100 km) in highway driving.  It won’t require costly urea injection or particulate filters to meet emissions standards.  Mazda credits the unprecedented low 14:1 compression ratio with the low emissions.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)