waited until the lights were out to tease the tidy rear end of a brand new
. The Japanese automaker didn't say much about the model that will debut at the
Geneva Motor Show
next month, only calling it "a brand-new addition to the
lineup," and "the second model in new-generation lineup." We're going to put our chips down on this being the next
crossover, which has been predicted to arrive by 2020.
If that's so, we can expect a larger model than the one currently on sale. The present, first-gen
rides on the
platform. The coming CX-3 will use the Skyactiv Vehicle Architecture supporting the new
, growing out of the subcompact class into the compact segment. According to one report last year, the extra girth is a play for better sales in the U.S. market. In 2017,
Mazda sold more CX-3s in Australia
than in the U.S.
The stronger, stiffer platform will introduce Mazda3's delights such as the human-centric interior ergonomics, and hopefully the same driving dynamics that we called "the life of the compact sedan party" in our
Mazda3 First Drive
. Yes, that's all but certain to mean a torsion beam rear suspension, which was said to have been done for NVH reasons after
Mazda said it "got a lot of complaints
from the media" over the multi-link rear. The engine lineup should mirror the Mazda3 in the U.S., being the naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder at launch, followed by the Skyactiv-X.
We can probably expect more teasers before Geneva press days kick off on March 5.