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2023 Mazda CX-60’s New 3.3-Liter Inline-Six Engine Wants To Prove Diesel Is Still Relevant

Most carmakers are rowing back from diesel but Mazda has just announced details of the European version of a new spark-less 3.3-liter inline-six destined for its CX-60 premium SUV.

Called e-Skyactiv D, it will join a 3.0-liter plug-in hybrid gasoline powertrain, and eventually, a regular gasoline engine, in the European CX-60 lineup as part of what Mazda calls a “Multi Solution Approach” to meeting customers’ differing needs. The new motor is available in two states of tune: a 197 hp (200 PS) version for rear-wheel drive versions of the SUV, and a 251 hp (254 PS) upgrade that comes only when buyers select a CX-60 equipped with Mazda’s i-Activ all-wheel drive system.

Both derivatives feature 48V mild hybrid assistance and a piece of combustion tech called Distribution-Controlled Partially Premixed Compression Ignition that helps them achieve a thermal efficiency of over 40 percent. The 251 hp engine helps the all-wheel drive CX-60 hit 62 mph (100 km/h) in 7.4 seconds, return 53.3 mpg (44.4 mpg U.S.) on the WLTP cycle and emit 137 g/km of CO2. Mazda doesn’t say how much slower the base engine is, but does say that the payoff is improved efficiency of 57.6 mpg (48 mpg U.S) and a reduction in CO2 output to 127 g/km.

Related: Take A Close Look At The New Mazda CX-60 That Introduces Us To Straight-Sixes And RWD

Aside from its six-cylinder layout making it more refined than an inline-four, Mazda claims the new 3.3 produces a “smooth and quiet engine tone, whilst delivering a clean and engaging sound,” and also says the lightweight construction means it weighs around the same as the 2.2-liter diesel engine found in the CX-5.

It’s worth highlighting that this mini-renaissance of the diesel is targeted at Europe. The CX-60, its still-secret CX-80 big brother and the e-Skyactiv diesel engine won’t be coming to the U.S., which will get a larger CX-70 SUV and an even larger CX-90 specifically designed for the North American market.

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