It looks like we’ll have to wait longer before getting the Mazda6 diesel in North America.

Mazda’s North American Operations, including U.S and Canadian operations, announced today that the launch of its SKYACTIV-D clean diesel engine in North America is being further delayed from its Spring 2014 announced debut timing.

“Although it is fully possible to deliver a SKYACTIV-D clean diesel engine that exceeds all North American specifications, we are unable to tune that engine to deliver the sort of driving performance that befits a Mazda,” said Sandra Lemaitre, National Manager, Public Relations, Mazda Canada Inc. “We felt it is more important to get the product right the first time than to rush to market with a vehicle that will not meet customers’ expectations.”

Mazda made a similar declaration in a press release, stating that while it understands its SKYACTIV-D can meet emission regulation requirements without the use of a NOx after-treatment system, it has decided that further development is required to deliver the right balance between fuel economy and Mazda-appropriate driving performance.

In short, the engine tuned to meet North American emissions requirements does not yet provide the “zoom-zoom” desired by Mazda for its products.

Mazda could not specify if this is a few months or a full model-year delay. The only statement to that effect comes from the official press release, stating that “further information on the program, including a timeline of launch for North America, technical specifications and fuel economy will be available at a later date, closer to launch.”