Mazda CX-3

Mazda have kept us waiting for the CX-3 but there could not have been a better time for this delightful compact crossover to join the Scheme. This ‘booming’ segment sees the turbo-less 2.0 litre petrol CX-3 pitched against other new entrants such as the Toyota C-HR, which has a option for a hybrid power source, and the Honda HRV, which offers an excellent diesel engine. The CX-3 has the advantage of offering a four wheel drive option (only as a Manual gearbox car) and it is also the best value with Advance Payments starting at £399.

 

As well as being quite a looker from the pavement the Mazda CX-3 really stands out from behind the wheel, it’s possibly the best small crossover to drive, aside from a bit of noise at cruising speeds. The CX-3 is a compact car, much smaller than the Nissan Qashqai in fact it’s more comparable with the Nissan Juke, being the same width and only 14cm longer. These neat dimensions pay dividends in town, where it’s really easy to manoeuvre in and out of tight parking spaces but it doesn’t translate into an especially roomy interior, while its fine upfront, the rear passengers suffer and the boot is only 350 litres, Nissan Juke offers 354-litres, a Vauxhall Mokka 362-litres and a Renault Captur 377-litres. Opt for the Sport trim in the CX-3 and the Bose speakers cut the boot size to 287 litres.

 

There are two trims on offer to mobility customers, the SE-L and Sport. Standard equipment is fantastic, climate control air-conditioning, cruise control, start / stop button, 16 inch alloy wheels, auto lights, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth, DAB radio, 7 inch touchscreen with built in sat nav (no apple carplay or android auto) heated front seats and safety features including lane departure warning and city brake support. The Sport trim has has a Bose stereo, keyless entry, 18 inch alloy wheels LED lights front and rear, reversing camera, half leather seats, heated steering wheel and a ‘heads up’ driving display.

 

Mazda have bucked the trend in engine technology, while other manufactures are producing 1.0 and 1.2 litre three cylinder turbo charged petrol engines, Mazda have produced a 2.0 litre four cylinder non turbo engine avaialble with 118bhp in two wheel drive or 148 in four, plump for the smaller engine unless you need the extra driving wheels as the throttle response is very sharp, making this the best-driving car in its class. It’ll cover 0-62mph in nine seconds flat, but thanks to the way it accelerates, it feels more exciting than the figures suggest. Official MPG figures are 47.9 miles per gallon and real world returns suggest that 40+ is realistic which is excellent. The Sky-Active Automatic is a six speed box which performs well and neither dents the performance or economy to a great degree, with 48.7 mpg claimed. The CX-3 is avaialble as a four wheel drive car but bizarrely only with a manual gearbox in Sport trim, the same engine is pumped up to produce 148 bhp but the extra weight and drive mechanism means its sprint to 62mph is only 0.3 of a second faster at 8.7 seconds while the economy is reduced to 44.1 miles per gallon.

 Autumn Best Buy – Mazda CX-3 SE-L Nav 2.0 petrol 118bhp Manual   –  £399 Advance Payment (£62.07 wpms) or £699 (£64.07 wpms) in Sport Nav trim

 Autumn Best Buy – Mazda CX-3 SE-L Nav 2.0 petrol 118bhp Automatic   –  £599 Advance Payment (£63.40 wpms) or £999 (£64.80 +£191 wpms) in Sport Nav trim

 Autumn Best Buy – Mazda CX-3 Sport Nav 2.0 petrol 148bhp Manual ‘All wheel drive’ –  £1399 Advance Payment (£346 wpms)

To see a 35 minute in depth review of the CX-3 by the RAC click here: Which Mobility Car – RAC Video Review