2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck

The new 2006 Mazda BT-50 one-ton pickup truck will be unveiled just in a couple of weeks. The event will take place during the 2006 Bangkok Motor Show that will be held from March 22 through April 2 at the Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Center, Thailand.

Code-named J97M, the new truck will replace the older Mazda Fighter commercial vehicle.

2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck
2006 Mazda BT-50

Being essentially a slightly upgraded Mazda B-4000 pickup, the new truck (as it often happens) will also be re-badged and presented to the North American working class as the new Ford Ranger.

Anyway, the work-horse will be offered with a choice of two engines, which will also be shared with the aforementioned Ford Ranger pickup.

Depending on your preferences, the BT-50 may be animated either by a 3.0-liter Duratorq diesel inline-four powerplant (it will be available only with the 4WD version of the truck) or a new 2.5-liter MZR-CD direct-injection turbo oil-burner with common-rail system.

2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck (side view)

Churning out about 141bhp of power, the smaller engine makes the BT-50 more powerful than the Mitsubishi L200 (134bhp) and the Toyota Hilux 2.5-liter D-4D (134 hp) but makes it suck a great deal comparing to the new Nissan Navara with its much more impressive 169bhp.

There is also said to be a heavy-duty five-speed automatic transmission in the works. It will not only make the ride smoother, but also will help you to save a penny or two thanks to the greater fuel economy.

Alas, Mazda doesn’t go into details yet as to the truck’s performance and fuel consumption, although claiming ‘an exciting blend of sophisticated design, refinement, responsive handling and dynamic performance’.

2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck (rear view)
2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck (interior, dashboard)
2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck (interior, side view)
2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck (interior, cup holders and central storage space)
2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck (interior, central tunnel, gear shifter)

Photos: Mazda

2006 Mazda BT-50 pickup truck technical specifications:

Estimated price: N/A
Body Type: pickup truck (4×2 and 4×4 Single Cab, 4×4 Double Cab)
Layout: front engine, RWD or 4WD
Engine: 156 PS @ 3200 rpm, 280 lb ft (380 Nm) @ 1800 rpm of torque, 3.0-liter / 143 PS @ 3500 rpm, 243 lb ft (330 Nm) @ 1800 rpm of torque, 2.5-liter
Transmission: N/A
Top Speed: 98 mph (157 km/h)
0 – 62 mph: 10.4 seconds
Fuel Economy combined mpg (l/100 km): 30.4 (7.74)
Exterior Dimensions (L/W/H/WB) mm: 5075 / 1805 / 1755 or 1760 / N/A
Ground clearance: N/A
Track (frt/rr): N/A / N/A
Curb to curb turning circle: N/A
Curb Weight: 1625/1694 (2.5 MZR-CD Diesel) or 1879/1976 (3.0 MZR-CD Diesel)
Coefficient of Drag (Cd): N/A
Seating Capacity: 2 or 5 (2/3)
Cargo Volume (seats DO NOT fold): N/A
Payload (max w/ occupants and cargo): N/A
Towing Capacity (max): N/A
Direct Competitors: Mitsubishi L200, Toyota Hilux, Nissan Navara

See also: Renault Kangoo Wallace & Gromit Limited Edition