Mazda is planning an August launch for its all-new Mazda6 midsize sedan in North America, almost a year after the car was first displayed at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show. Part of the reason for the delay is because the new car has been specifically designed for North America and includes a larger body and more powerful engines than the global version. Handling and comfort were also optimized for North American road conditions.

The North American Mazda6 will be powered by a newly developed 2.5L inline four-cylinder engine or a 3.7L V6. The four-cylinder is already available in the European and Japanese Mazda6 models, while the V6 engine is the same unit from the CX-9 SUV. Mazda is yet to reveal power ratings for the four-cylinder but expect to see more than 156hp offered by the previous 2.3L mill. The V6, meanwhile, should deliver the same 273hp as the unit in the CX-9.

A six-speed manual and a five-speed automatic transmission with manual-shift mode will be available for the four-cylinder, while the V6 is only available with a a six-speed automatic transmission with manual-shift mode. The only bodystyle will be the four-door sedan. Other unique features of the North American version include a new grille and rear fascia and bigger fenders.

The car will be built at the same AutoAlliance International Flat Rock site in Michigan where the previous version was sourced. The car will first hit showrooms in August and should be priced from just under $20,000.

North American 2009 Mazda6

European Mazda6