So why isn’t it referred to as the CX-Four, you ask? That already exists as a automobile for the Chinese language market and is a special proposition, whereas this newcomer is trying to construct on the momentum established by its hatchback sibling: the not too long ago launched new Mazda Three.
Sizing up at Four,395mm lengthy and 1,795mm huge, the CX-30 slots neatly into the compact crossover class, being just a bit bit bigger than the Volkswagen T-Roc, pretty comparable in dimension to the Vary Rover Evoque, and just a bit bit smaller than the chunky Volvo XC40. However there actually is not any finish to the record of rivals this new automobile faces; the Toyota C-HR, Mercedes GLA, Peugeot 3008 and extra line up in opposition to it.
On nearer inspection it’s actually greater than only a Mazda Three on stilts. The bodywork is all new and subtly completely different, with a extra sensible rear third to go along with the rugged-looking black cladding that strains the sills and wheelarches. Apart from that, although, this automobile makes use of the identical platform as the three and is being launched with the identical engines: a 114bhp 1.Eight-litre SkyActiv-D diesel and a 120bhp SkyActiv-G 2.Zero-litre petrol, as pushed right here with a six-speed computerized gearbox. The brand new SkyActiv-X compression-ignition petrol engine can even be accessible when the CX-30 arrives in sellers in November, we’re instructed.
Inside, the format of the dashboard and switchgear is much like that of the Mazda Three, save for a bit of additional padding on the highest of the facia. That is excellent news; the brand new Three wowed us with its stage of perceived high quality after we first drove it, and it’s the identical case right here. Supplies are robust and high-quality, switches function satisfyingly and are logically laid out, and the brand new Eight.Eight-inch infotainment show is sharp and simple to make use of. General, the CX-30 undoubtedly steps on the toes of premium rivals for luxurious, and leaves behind its extra mainstream rivals.
There’s loads of area up entrance, and Mazda has nailed the CX-30’s driving place. Nonetheless, a tall passenger sitting behind a tall driver might discover legroom a little bit restricted, and the transmission tunnel is sort of excessive, limiting legroom within the center seat. The boot opening is huge and tall, however with all seats in place the capability is 430 litres – significantly lower than you’d discover in, say, a Skoda Karoq.
Get behind the wheel and the CX-30 feels each bit as robust as the three – though this isn’t all the way down to the engine. The modest torque of the 120bhp SkyActiv-G means progress is a little bit lacklustre, with 11.2 seconds wanted to hit 62mph from a standstill. On hilly roads the auto gearbox retains the engine within the increased reaches of the rev-band, spoiling its in any other case spectacular refinement. We’d persist with the wonderful sharp-shifting six-speed guide gearbox in any case.
The torque of the diesel might be a tempting treatment for a lot of, however fortunately the CX-30 is a crossover suited to carrying its momentum. With the raised trip peak, there’s extra physique roll than within the Three, but the essential strengths of that automobile’s chassis stay, together with correct, nicely weighted steering.
At velocity, the trip smooths out properly and the engine could be very quiet at a motorway cruise, making it enjoyable away from the bends. However our check automobile’s damping appeared a little bit too eager to transmit judders into the cabin at low speeds on the town.
We’ll discover out about UK specs and costs shortly, however we’re instructed that the line-up will strongly mirror that of the three. If that’s the case, anticipate good ranges of normal gear for the cash. However bear in mind, the CX-30’s rivals might not characteristic such impressively executed interiors or strong dynamics, but nearly all of them supply torquier, extra highly effective turbocharged engines.