The 2023 Mazda CX-8 has just made its debut in Japan–nearly two months after the updated CX-8 made its Philippine debut at the Philippine International Motor Show. This is the most comprehensive update to the CX-8 so far, as it comes with a revised exterior and interior design and a number of new tech features.
First and foremost, let’s talk about its exterior design. The 2023 Mazda CX-8 comes with a more elegant face that’s practically the same as what’s found in the facelifted CX-5. This includes a new front bumper with a mesh grille, new LED headlights, and a revised tailgate design that incorporates the new LED taillights. There are also new alloy wheel designs that are similar to those in the CX-5. Just like its two-row sibling, the three-row CX-8 now has the option to have the black cladding color matched to the body on higher variants.
Moving inside the CX-8, the 7-inch digital instrument cluster has been slightly redesigned to feature an Off-Road Mode theme when the aforementioned drive mode is selected. It also comes with the second-generation Mazda Connect infotainment system, which is housed in a 10.25-inch screen. There are also USB-C ports in various locations around the interior, as well as wireless Apple CarPlay (though Android Auto is still wired). Depending on the variant, the upholstery can either be in standard leather or Nappa Leather.
As for engines, there are still three to choose from for the Japanese market. Entry-level models come with a naturally-aspirated 190-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine, while higher-end variants have two turbocharged options. The first one is the 2.2-liter four-cylinder diesel engine that produces 200 hp, while the other one is a 2.5-liter gas-fed motor that produces 227 hp. All are mated to a 6-speed automatic, driving either the front or all four wheels.
Mazda has also updated the advanced driver-assist features of the CX-8. The adaptive LED headlights now have 20 arrays versus the previous 12, while its adaptive cruise control now has lane centering that works in conjunction with its stop-and-go function.
The 2023 Mazda CX-8 will go on sale first in Japan this December. A Philippine launch will depend on when the Malaysian plant will start assembling the new CX-8 since this is where the ASEAN region sources this three-row SUV.
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