The 2010 Mazda CX-7 will enjoy a host of new refinements, but you won't be able to see many of them.

Mazda unveiled the facelifted Mazda CX-7 at the New York Motor Show this week. Surprisingly, more changes seem to have been made to the vehicle's skeleton and muscles than its exterior.  Along with the expected freshening up of the vehicle's design comes a new engine choice for the car's customers.

Just about three years old, the CX-7 model now includes an aluminum block, naturally aspirated 2.5-liter DOHC MZR four cylinder engine. This engine produces 161 hp with 161 ft-lb of torque. Sound familiar? This machine is also available on both the Mazda3 and Mazda6. The updated front-wheel drive vehicle also gets a "light-weight, efficient, five-speed automatic transmission," to bring fuel economy figures to 21 mpg in the city, and 28 mpg highway. The engine/transmission pairing may also be purchased on the i SV and i Sport trims, but not as an all-wheel drive.

Not enough power, you say? Well, you can still opt for the 2.3-Liter DISI turbo engine. Mazda is pretty proud of their "award-winning" engine, which delivers 244 hp and a beefy 258 ft-lb of torque. What's more impressive is that 90% of the torque is available between 2000 and 5000 rpm, meaning a quick launch when the light turns green.

Mazda attacked other angles of the car as well. By refining the platform, they were able to reduce "noise, vibration & harshness" to make a more comfortable ride. Wind noise has also been diminished, thanks to the improvements, which come at only a marginal weight increase. Changes include retuned dampers at the front and rear, and a new isolators for the powertrain.

On the outside, you will notice the larger five-point grille meant to tie the car to the RX-8, MX-5, and Mazda3. The front grille is now lower to the ground, and is the centerpiece of a very Mazda-esque front fascia. When you upgrade to the Grand Touring line you also get new front foglamps and GT detailing on the mirrors and door handles. Wheel choices range from base level 17-inchers, up to brand new 19-inch alloys. From the side, the vehicle looks a bit bolder, but the rear end still looks rather disjointed.

Inside, drivers will use a new multi-function steering wheel with the typical controls. Bluetooth functionality is included. Displays are blacked out, with white pointers, and wrapped in blue light. Now, the center panel may also be covered in either Piano black or metallic edging. From inside, you also notice the change in the roofline, made to accommodate the data display for the onboard computer, and available rear-view camera. A 3.5-inch monochrome and 4.1-inch color LCD screen is available. Blind spot monitoring is also available.

North American customers can purchase the freshened up 2010 Mazda CX-7 beginning later this summer.


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