Mazda CX-3 (2015 – 2019) Review
Mazda CX-3 (2015 – 2019) At A Glance
Mazda expanded its SUV offering in 2015 with the Mazda CX-3, which was a smaller car than the Mazda CX-5 but did not skimp on quality or driving fun. It was pitched as a premium option with an upmarket cabin, lots of standard kit and the option of AWD. Up against the likes of the dependable Honda HR-V, good-value Skoda Karoq and stylish Toyota CH-R, the Mazda has a lot to recommend it. Read on for our full Mazda CX-3 review.
At first sight, the Mazda CX-3 looks very much like the larger Mazda CX-5, but it is appreciably smaller, with bolder lines, sleeker headlights and a more prominent grille. Inside it is very much like the Mazda 2 of the same period, with a classy, neat dashboard layout and an abundance of quality materials.
There is a standard fit seven-inch touchscreen with a rotary controller for use on the move. It’s not as slick as the touchscreen system you’d find in a Volkswagen T-Roc, but it works well enough and means there’s no mess of buttons to clutter up the centre console.
The finish is good, with plush leather or suede inlays in the doors and on the dashboard, depending on trim level, while practicality is fine for a family.
There is plenty of legroom and enough headroom for all but the tallest passengers. A 350-litre boot is about average for the class, although it has the benefit of a false floor for hiding items out of sight.
Engines include a frugal 1.5-litre diesel (later changed to a 1.8-litre) and a 2.0-litre petrol, the top version with 150PS. All of the engines give the light Mazda CX-3 punchy performance, with plenty of pace to overtake slower traffic and gearing that gives a relaxed, quiet motorway cruise, notwithstanding a little wind noise around the large door mirrors.
But it’s on a country road where the Mazda CX-3 really shines, thanks to ample grip and lively steering. It’s a fun car on a back road, with suspension that blends a comfortable ride with impressive handling and body control.
For those who live out in the wilds, there is even an all-wheel-drive variant on offer for some extra traction in poor conditions.
Looking for a second opinion? Why not read heycar’s Mazda CX-3 review?