Living with a Mazda CX-60 e-Skyactiv D MHEV: a mild improvement? | CAR Magazine

Living with a Mazda CX-60 e-Skyactiv D MHEV: a mild improvement?

Published: 25 May 2024 Updated: 25 May 2024

► We live with a Mazda CX-60
► This time we test the mild hybrid
► The start of our long-term test

You may recall Chris Chilton’s recent mixed experiences with a plug-in hybrid version of the Mazda CX-60. There was plenty he liked, but not the powertrain. So now we’re running another one, only this time it’s the 3.3-litre inline-six mild-hybrid diesel.

Initial impressions are mixed – there’s that striking front end with its aggressive grille and high bonnet line, crisp and distinctive LED lights and sleek lines. It’s not exactly a mould-breaking or daring design, but it’s clean, unfussy and inoffensive.

I’m not a fan of the 20-inch black wheels on our mid-level Homura specification, but frustratingly the silver variants are only available on the top-tier Takumi spec.

Inside the cabin the CX- 60 lives up to its premium aspirations, with comfortable leather seats that are both heated and cooled; the rear seats are heated too, as is the steering wheel. What I’m most impressed by is the ergonomics in the cabin. There are actual, physical buttons, and everything can be controlled without laying a finger on a touchscreen. The main display is a touchscreen until the car is in motion, when you need to switch to the rotary controller.

When you get in, a camera (usually) recognises who is driving, and moves the seat, wheel and mirrors to the desired position. You can even make use of the car’s suggested position to get you seated in the right place by inputting your height and letting it shift everything into place. It’s not perfect, but it gets you 90 per cent of the way there.

And what about the elephant in the room – that powertrain? Well, initial impressions are good. The 251bhp diesel inline-six is remarkably smooth and emits a satisfying burble. There’s bags of torque on tap, 406lb ft to be exact, and the eight-speed auto ’box delivers every drop without stutter.

In Homura trim, with extras including a panoramic roof and metallic paint, our CX-60 weighs in at £54,357 on the road. Not cheap, but a good amount of car for the money when you view it next to its competitors. Over the next few months I hope to really get under the skin of the CX-60 and see if it actually lives up to its lofty aspirations.

Logbook: Mazda CX-60 Homura e-Skyactiv D MHEV 3.3

Price: £50,705 (£54,357 as tested)
Performance: 3283cc diesel six-cylinder, 251bhp, 7.4sec 0-62mph, 136mph
Efficiency: 53.3mpg (official), 42.3mpg (tested), 138g/km CO2
Energy cost: 20.9p per mile
Miles this month: 1081
Total miles: 4396