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2020 Mazda CX-9 gets new standard features, but a hefty price bump

And available second-row captain's chairs? Aye-aye, says Mazda.

2020 Mazda CX-9
Making upmarket moves; that's the new Mazda way.

The 2020 Mazda CX-9 receives a doozy of a price increase for the new model year, but thankfully, there's extra standard gear present to at least present a value proposition.

Meandering around a 2020 CX-9 and stumbling upon the window sticker will reveal a base price of $34,835, which jumps $1,510 from the 2019 model year.  All prices include a mandatory $1,045 destination charge. The extra cash needed to put a CX-9 in the garage does reward owners with standard heated front seats, rain-sensing windshield wipers, Mazda's suite of active safety technology and a power driver's seat with lumbar support.

If this gear intrigues you, the $1,510 extra isn't so bad. Do keep in mind all-wheel drive is a $1,900 option on all trims save for the range-topping Signature model.

What you won't find on a base CX-9 is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability. That's unlocked in the Touring trim, which starts at $36,655. That's only $280 more than last year and still includes leather-trimmed seats and a power liftgate. The Touring trim also gets Mazda's fancy new keyless entry and start system, plus power function for the second-row seats to slide and tilt them.

On the options list, the CX-9 is also the first Mazda to offer the company's latest 9.0-inch touchscreen unit. It's available on the CX-9 Touring and other pricier trim levels. Opt for the Touring model's Premium Package, which adds Bose audio, more USB ports, sunshades and more, and you're looking at an extra $2,100.

If those aren't enough comforts, Mazda will gladly show you a CX-9 Grand Touring, which starts at $42,495 -- up $610 from last year. Ponying up unlocks a hands-free power liftgate, a 360-degree view monitor, heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats, adaptive front lighting system and more gear. New for 2020 is the option to swap in captain's chairs for the second row, which are also heated, in the Grand Touring trim. Buyers can plop the same seats in a Touring model, but they won't feature the heating element.

At the tippy-top of the CX-9 lineup is the Signature trim, which costs $47,160, or $750 more than last year. Here, the CX-9 does its best top-tier luxury impression with real Nappa leather and a Santos Rosewood interior trim.

No matter which trim, Mazda was able to squeeze a little more oomph out of the standard 2.5-liter turbo-four engine. For 2020, there's an extra 10 pound-feet of torque available for a total of 320 pound-feet (anything less than 93 octane diminishes the figure, do note). Horsepower holds steady at 250 hp.

The ritzier CX-9 will be shipping out to dealers as you read this and should be on lots soon.

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