2009 Mazda6 will start at $18,550 (USA)

U.S.-spec 2009 Mazda6 will start at $18,550
U.S.-spec 2009 Mazda6

The price is for the entry-level 2009 Mazda6 SV model, which is powered by a 170hp 2.5-liter inline-four engine mated to a six-speed manual transmission.

Although the announced price doesn’t include a $670 destination charge, the car will nevertheless be almost $600 cheaper than the outgoing model and will definitely beat its main competitors: Chevrolet Malibu, Honda Accord, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry. At least, in terms of recommended price.

2009 Mazda6

Well, the price may be down but it looks that the value of the car has also taken a dip.

Gone are alloy wheels, cruise control and keyless entry. And the vehicle’s standard CD stereo with steering-wheel controls lacks an auxiliary MP3 jack. On the other hand, the 2009 Mazda6 will still be available with standard power windows and locks, an air conditioner, ABS, stability control system, and six airbags.

2009 Mazda6 (V6 DOHC VVT engine)

Surprisingly enough, with its 20/29 mpg city/highway, the 2009 Mazda6 is less fuel efficient than the outgoing 2008MY car. Even in ideal city driving conditions, you’ll travel one mile less on a gallon of gasoline.

The problem, probably, lays with the manual transmission, since the optional five-speed automatic returns a noticeable decrease in fuel consumption of 21/29mpg city/highway.

The new 270hp, 3.7-liter V6 engine, which is available only with an automatic gearbox, will feature even worse fuel economy of about 17/25mpg and putting it on the scale of such gas-guzzler as the 2009 Honda Pilot (17/23mpg).

2009 Mazda6 (interior)

Even the 2007 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 with its powerful 400hp V8 and 18/28mpg rating is more fuel-efficient on the highway than the 2009 Mazda6!

The car will be available in four trims: SV, Sport, Touring and Grand Touring.

As of yet, there are no plans to bring a hatchback or wagon models to the U.S. market.

2009 Mazda6 (interior, engine start/stop button)
2009 Mazda6 (interior, entertainment system touchscreen display)
2009 Mazda6 (speedometer gauge)
2009 Mazda6 (interior, steering wheel controls)

Photos: Mazda

See also: 2009 Mazda6: first specs (North America)