Mazda Could Resurrect Its Midsize Sedan As an Electric “6e” Model

As with many other Mazda rumors over the years, though, take this one with a grain of salt

(Images: Mazda, logo via EUIPO)

Another year, another Mazda6 rumor? Well, this one could become a reality.

The midsize sedan market shrank dramatically as the 2010s drew to a close, with the venerated Mazda6 rolling off into the sunset after the 2021 model year. Ever since, we’ve seen rumor after rumor of what its replacement — if it even gets a replacement — might look like. Will it be on Mazda’s new rear-wheel drive architecture? Will it have a straight-six turbocharged engine? Does this mean Mazda actually have a rival to the BMW 5 Series!? According to this latest rumor, no…not exactly.

Instead, AutoGuide spotted an interesting European trademark application hinting at Mazda’s next-generation sedan. It might well be the “Mazda 6e”, and that little letter and “6e” logos are significant clues. As the current Mazda6 gears down production even in overseas markets, the new one may be electric. At least, that’s a possibility.

As ever, trademark applications don’t reveal too much public-facing information, and that’s the reality we face once again here. Mazda told the European Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), that Mazda 6e pertains to “automobiles and their parts; electric cars and their parts.” That last bit is fueling (pardon the expression) speculation that the next-gen car will be electric. We don’t know that for sure, nor has Mazda seen what we’d consider tremendous success when it comes to launching EVs so far. Remember the MX-30? Yeah, that only died a few months back, and I suspect most folks forgot it even existed by this point.

Coming back to that name for a second, “e” could refer to electrified, rather than purely electric as well.

The company is officially in the plug-in hybrid game thanks to the “eSkyActiv” powertrain available on the CX90 and CX-70. Mazda’s also dabbled with rotary engines for use as range extenders, though a big sedan doesn’t seem like the best application for that tech.

Since we are just dealing with a trademark here, all the variables make accurately predicting what will happen extremely difficult, to put it mildly. Odds are even if the Mazda6 lives into another generation, we Americans won’t see it as Mazda makes most of its money these days off SUVs (as does nearly every other automaker). We have also not seen an actual concept for such a car yet, while the company did tease us again with the notion of a revived RX sports car or a next, next-gen MX-5 Miata by way of the Iconic SP concept.

I’ve said or at least implied it before, and I’ll say it again here: Even as a brand enthusiast, I’m skeptical of any Mazda rumor. The company does need to think ahead toward an electrified future, so there could be some truth to it exploring opportunities in that direction. That’s especially true considering its recent ties with Toyota for hybrid components. Shifting industry and consumer trends may eventually wind up dragging Mazda away from internal combustion kicking and screaming, but it will need to expand its electrified offerings (and, ultimately, EV portfolio) to have any hope or prayer of competing in the evolving automotive landscape five, ten or more years down the line.