We had a feeling this was coming, but the cat's now officially out of the bag: The Mazda CX-7 is being discontinued in the United States.
The recently launched 2013 CX-5 will effectively replace the CX-7 (as well as the Ford-sourced Tribute), meaning there won't really be a void in Mazda's product lineup. "CX-5 has a clearer competitive set, unlike CX-7, which was in the middle of two segments," explains Mazda product communications specialist Beverly Braga.
Dimensionally, the CX-5 is slightly smaller than the CX-7, but actually boasts more cargo capacity and overall interior volume. With the rear seats folded, the CX-5 can hold up to 65.4 cubic feet of cargo (compared to 58.6 cubic feet in the CX-7) and has a total of 103.8 cubic feet of overall passenger space (101.7 in CX-7).
What's more, the CX-5's nifty new 2.0-liter Skyactiv four-cylinder engine offers substantially better fuel economy than the base 2.5-liter four of the CX-7. And while we'll certainly miss the potency of the optional 2.3-liter turbo four of the CX-7 – a version of the mill used in the Mazdaspeed3 – we can easily do without its fuel economy ratings of 18/24 miles per gallon city/highway (or 17/21 when paired with all-wheel drive – ouch!).
This may be the end of the road for the CX-7 in the U.S., but Mazda says that sales of the crossover will still continue in other markets. The CX-7 will officially be phased out at the end of the 2012 model year.