Aside from the MX-30, Bermaz has also introduced the 2022 Mazda CX-8 in Malaysia today. The updated three-row SUV may not grab the headlines like its electric sibling, but it’s a popular model all the same and this latest version comes with some meaningful upgrades.
The biggest of these is the addition of a turbocharged petrol 2.5 T High Plus AWD variant, which tops the range at RM212,225 on-the-road without insurance. The rest of the petrol lineup remains, with the 2.5 Mid 2WD kicking off the range at RM177,674 and the Mid High variant, now renamed the 2.5 High 2WD, priced at RM183,452.
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In turn, the outgoing High model has been rechristened the 2.5 High Plus 2WD, costing RM197,553. Also changed is the sole 2.2 D High Plus diesel, ditching its all-wheel-drive system; it now retails at RM204,759. These figures exclude the sales and service tax (SST), the exemption of which ends on Friday. As usual, every purchase comes with a five-year/100,000 km warranty and five years of free service.
The new 2.5 litre forced-induction mill, badged the Skyactiv-G 2.5 T, is shared with the CX-5 and develops 228 hp at 5,000 rpm and 420 Nm of torque at 2,000 rpm. That’s a useful boost over the naturally-aspirated version, which produces 192 hp at 6,000 rpm and 258 Nm at 4,000 rpm. The turbo CX-8 is also now the only model to come with Mazda’s i-Activ AWD.
The 2.2 litre Skyactiv-D turbodiesel continues to churn out 188 hp at 4,500 rpm and 450 Nm at 2,000 rpm. All models get the same six-speed Skyactiv-Drive automatic gearbox, along with the new G-Vectoring Control Plus (GVC Plus) that now also applies the brakes to stabilise the car.
Beyond the new engine, the 2022 model year adds a few other enhancements, as well as some minor aesthetic tweaks. On the outside, the CX-8 ditches the previous slatted grille in favour of an array of interlocking vertical bars, fitted to the High Plus variants and finished in gunmetal.
These models also get additional chrome strips on the front bumper and new 19-inch ten-spoke alloy wheels; the lower-end versions retain the previous 19-inch rollers that are painted black on the 2.5 High. Lastly, there are two new metallic colour options – Platinum Quartz and the Mazda 3‘s Polymetal Grey.
Inside, the previously optional eight-inch touchscreen is now standard, although the Malaysian spec misses out on the 8.8- and 10.25-inch displays offered in other markets. Still you now get wireless Apple CarPlay connectivity, Qi wireless charging and LED interior lighting on the 2.5 High model and above, plus leather upholstery and a six-way power-adjustable passenger seat as standard. The High Plus cars also add seat heating and ventilation, including second-row heating.
Otherwise, standard kit has been retained and includes automatic LED head- and taillights, LED fog lights, keyless entry, push-button start, triple-zone auto climate control, a seven-inch instrument display, an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with memory, a seven-seat layout, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, six speakers, a reverse camera and a hands-free powered tailgate.
As per the old Mid Plus model, the 2.5 High adds adaptive LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, signature LED taillights, a frameless rear-view mirror and six seats, the latter with second-row captain’s chairs and a centre storage console. The High Plus throws on deep red Nappa leather, a head-up display, a 360-degree camera system and manual rear side window sunshades, as well as roof rails on the turbo models.
Safety-wise, the CX-8 comes as standard with six airbags and stability control, with the 2.5 High retaining the Mid Plus’ i-Activsense driver assistance systems. These include autonomous emergency braking, blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert.
New for 2022 are additional functions on the High Plus models, these being adaptive cruise control with stop and go (finally), lane centring assist and a full-speed AEB system. They join the existing lane keeping assist, reverse AEB and automatic high beam that are exclusive to the range-topping variants.