Better-equipped 2019 Mazda CX-9 priced from $32,280

Android Auto and Apple CarPlay now come standard on Touring models and above

Mazda has kicked off sales of the 2019 CX-9 SUV, which brings more equipment than before for a slightly raised base price of $32,280 (excluding a $995 destination and handling charge).

That’s what an entry-level 2019 Mazda CX-9 Sport in front-wheel-drive configuration costs, and customers do get plenty of standard kit for the money.

Highlights include the 18-inch alloys, LED headlights and taillights, 7-inch Mazda Connect infotainment  system with revised Commander control knob, three-zone automatic climate control, cloth seats, Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio pairing, as well as keyless entry and push-button start.

Standard safety features consist of Smart City Brake Support automatic emergency braking, and Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert.

The 2019 Mazda CX-9 Touring starts at $35,330 and adds new-for-2019 factory-installed Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, as well as a frameless auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Grand Touring models (from $40,840) offer more standard features and add a new 7-inch TFT reconfigurable gauge cluster display first seen in the 2018 Mazda6 sedan, ventilated front seats, new power-folding door mirrors and a new 360° View Monitor.

Finally, the 2019 Mazda CX-9 Signature ($45,365) carries on as the flagship of the range, adding new new Santos rosewood interior trim and supplemental interior lighting around the transmission shifter for the new model year.

All Mazda CX-9 models get a retuned suspension that’s said to offer “a smoother, quieter and more natural ride,” with refinement further enhanced by greater sound suppresion courtesy of a thicker headliner and thicker floor mats.

As before, the only powertrain choice is the SkyActiv-G 2.5T turbocharged gasoline engine that delivers 250 hp and 310 lb-ft (420 Nm) of torque. The SkyActiv-Drive six-speed automatic transmission is standard, while Mazda’s predictive i-Activ all-wheel drive is an option on all models except CX-9 Signature that gets it as standard.

Mazda will start shipping the 2019 CX-9 to dealerships nationwide in September.

READ MORE: Top 10 three-row midsize SUVs to buy in the US in 2018

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