2020 Mazda CX-30 review: A fancy and fun small SUV

With the recognition of small crossover SUVs, there is certainly no shortage of proven entries presenting efficient drivetrain configurations and a lot of utility. What this section lacks, having said that, is compelling model and terrific driving dynamics. For the most aspect, small SUVs are forgettable place-A-to-place-B shuttles.


  • Handsome sheetmetal
  • Close to-luxury inside
  • Sporty dealing with

Really don’t Like

  • Clunky infotainment
  • No rear USB ports
  • Sluggish acceleration

Luckily for us for anyone in research of a compact SUV with extra visible pizzazz and a extra partaking character, the 2020 Mazda CX-30 can fill that position for your motoring enjoyment.

A authentic looker in and out

The Honda HR-V, Nissan Rogue Sport and Subaru Crosstrek don’t score large on the structure scale, but the CX-30 does. Slotting in concerning the CX-three and CX-5 in Mazda’s SUV lineup, the newest entry is beautiful, donning the most current acquire on the firm’s Kodo structure language. Like the Mazda3 sedan and hatchback that ended up new past 12 months, the CX-30 has flowing body traces that read clear, sporty and mature.

Also like the Mazda3, the CX-30 has an inside that deserves large praise for its simple, classy and intuitive format. The luxury-degree products ought to have a shout-out as well, and are truly extraordinary to see in this course, putting the environment in competing motor vehicles to disgrace. Important touchpoints are leather-based- or vinyl-wrapped, padded and stitched, and all plastic panels inside of are properly finished. The front seats have help in all the correct locations for lengthy drives and plenty of bolstering to hold on to travellers by way of turns.

Entrance-seat space is great for adults, but the again of the CX-30 isn’t what I’d connect with spacious. A pair of regular-sizing adults in the again will in shape great, with plenty of legroom, but a few travellers throughout would be a squeeze. For cargo, there is certainly twenty.2 cubic toes in the trunk, which grows to 45.2 cubic toes with the backseats folded down, revealing one of the Mazda’s weaknesses. The Honda (fifty seven.6), Nissan (53.three) and Subaru (fifty five.three) all boast very a little bit extra total baggage volume.

Sizeable tech

On the know-how front, all CX-30s get a Mazda Hook up infotainment system with an 8.8-inch center show, but it isn’t a touchscreen. That means controls drop primarily on the knob on the center console, flanked by shortcut buttons for my tester’s navigation system, twelve-speaker Bose audio setup and Bluetooth.

Mazda Hook up isn’t the best infotainment system to do the job by way of.

Jon Wong/Roadshow

Not possessing a touchscreen means it is really trickier to efficiently do the job by way of Mazda Hook up. Entering navigation destinations is extra time-consuming, and placing radio presets is way as well complicated. Though the system switches concerning various menus in brief get, working it continue to needs to be simplified, and extra vivid graphics would not hurt, both. Luckily for us, end users have the choice of handing infotainment controls around to Apple CarPlay or Android Car.

What’s an additional downer? There are only two USB ports and a twelve-volt outlet up front, with no electricity details inside uncomplicated get to of travellers in again.

For basic safety, every CX-30 will come conventional with adaptive cruise command, ahead-collision warning with computerized crisis braking and lane-departure warning with lane-keep assist. My loaded High quality Package motor vehicle also rewards from blind-place checking, rear cross-targeted visitors warn and a head-up show.

Navigation, Bose audio, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Car are conventional on the CX-30 High quality Package.

Jon Wong/Roadshow

Mazda dynamics

Motivating all CX-30s is a 2.5-liter by natural means aspirated I4 making 186 horsepower and 186 pound-toes of torque, connected to a sleek-shifting six-speed computerized transmission. Entrance-wheel push is conventional with all-wheel push out there for all trim concentrations. On my all-wheel-push High quality tester, the EPA estimates it’s going to return twenty five miles per gallon in the metropolis and 32 mpg on the freeway. Through a week of mostly metropolis driving, I observed a respectable 26 mpg.

The Mazda’s electricity figures are stout for the course, bettering the Honda (141 hp), Nissan (141 hp) and Subaru (152 hp). But off-the-line acceleration is sluggish with peak torque not out there right until even more up in the rev array at 4,000 rpm. To assistance matters some on the very low finish, partaking Sport mode unlocks peppier launches and lets the transmission dangle on to gears extended, permitting the engine operate up large wherever it does its very best do the job.

The CX-30’s engine is sluggish on the very low finish.

Jon Wong/Roadshow

Suspension tuning on the CX-30 is wonderful, providing a compliant, peaceful and snug experience for typical slogs all over city, and composed manners when flinging the Mazda all over on backroads. The steering is lightly weighted, but responsive for sharp transform-in which is made superior by the G-Vectoring Handle As well as system. This tech cuts down engine torque to the front wheels somewhat when the driver commences to dial in steering enter. That loads up the front 18-inch Bridgestone Turanza EL 400 tires for extra grip when getting into turns. I cannot sense the system in action, which is the place, but the outcomes are extraordinary — this crossover truly feels planted by way of corners.

Taken as a whole, the drivetrain, suspension, G-Vectoring tech, steering reaction and potent brakes generate a small SUV which is truly enjoyable and entertaining to wheel all over. And which is some thing you just cannot say about the HR-V, Rogue Sport or Crosstrek, placing the CX-30 aside in an ever more expanding section.

How I’d spec it

For the loaded all-wheel-push CX-30 High quality Package pictured in this article, you may have to aspect with $31,025, including $one,100 for vacation spot. That figure isn’t as well insane, but I’m generally seeking for techniques to be as frugal as doable and get the options I value most. 

A $31,025 cost tag for a loaded CX-30 is on the steep aspect.

Jon Wong/Roadshow

In this Mazda’s case, my best example is a Favored Package with all-wheel push that commences at $28,700, netting me blind-place checking, heated front seats, upgraded Bose sound and satellite radio. Tacking on $300 for a Equipment Gray Metallic paint task and $275 for a wireless charging pad for an additional electricity source provides the cost tag of my motor vehicle to $29,275.

The course athlete

The 2020 Mazda CX-30 starts off at $23,000, with all-wheel push costing an additional $one,400. It fees somewhat extra than the $21,940 HR-V and $23,155 Crosstrek, with that past possessing conventional all-wheel push, but it does undercut the $24,335 Rogue Sport. Specified the choice concerning all of these, it is really a no-brainer for me. Even with warts like a not-so-terrific infotainment system, the CX-30 is the distinct winner for its appears, inside create good quality and how fun it is guiding the wheel.