2016 mazda cx

The subcompact-crossover segment is erupting like an overdue volcano—witness the new Chevy Trax, Fiat 500X, and Honda HR-V joining other wee hatchbacks on stilts, such as the Buichồng Encore, Jeep Renegade, Kia Soul, Mini Countryman, & Nissan Juke. Now, having spent several hours behind the wheel of Mazda’s new CX-3, we think it just may be the most compelling of the bunch. Of course, only a comparison chạy thử can prove sầu out that initial impression—stay tuned—but there’s no doubt the Mazda is quite good.

Classy Chassis

Although at first glance the CX-3 looks like a larger CX-5 that’s shrunk in the hot sun, Mazda’s Kobởi thiết kế language lends a more muscular stance và a premium aura to the mini-ute. Bold character lines combined with minimal overhangs, a pronounced snout, and a crimped greenhouse give sầu a taut and compact appearance, which is even more fetching in person. Base Thể Thao models get by with 16-inch steel wheels & midmàn chơi Touring versions have aluminum wheels of the same diameter, but the Grand Touring’s 18-inch pieces offer the most appealing aesthetics.

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The CX-3 foretells much of what lớn expect from the upcoming năm 2016 Mazdomain authority 2 (the two vehicles mô tả an architecture), with a rigid-yet-light unibody structure serving as a solid foundation. Sixty-three percent of the structure is composed of high-strength steels, và there’s also ample insulation from the road. Struts are used up front & a torsion-beam axle resides out baông xã. As with most current Mazdas, the CX-3’s body toàn thân, chassis, transmission, & engine employ the brand’s Skyactiv engineering philosophy, which is intended khổng lồ harmonize all elements of the vehicle khổng lồ operate with maximum efficiency. In short, it works.


Momentum is Key

On the highways and curvy mountain roads of our drive near Phoenix, Arizona, this cohesion translates lớn an intimate và rewarding driving experience, not unlike that of our long-term năm ngoái Mazda 3 hatchbachồng. In fact, despite the slightly raised seating position and the “predictive” all-wheel-drive sầu system similar khổng lồ the lakiểm tra CX-5’s (an estimated $1250 option on all trims), the CX-3 feels like a normal hatchbachồng oto, which may actually be off-putting for buyers seeking a high-riding feel. The ride is pleasantly compliant for commutes, the amount of feedbaông xã from the electric power steering would make some BMWs blush, & the overall comportment is balanced and responsive sầu.


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The Mazda’s Skyactiv-G 2.0-liter four-cylinder, unfortunately, isn’t as enthralling. While it’s mated lớn a six-tốc độ automatic with a smartly tuned Thể Thao mode & optional paddle shifters (GT models only), the engine struggles khổng lồ motivate the CX-3 with any verve. Tuned for this application, output is rated at 146 horsepower at 6000 rpm và 146 lb-ft of torque at 2800 revs—slightly more than the HR-V’s 1.8-liter but considerably less than the turbocharged Juke’s 188 ponies.

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Granted, part of our drive was at higher mountain elevations, which sapped the naturally aspirated 2.0-liter of some strength. But this is not a quick vehicle; we estimate the dash to lớn 60 mph will take at least eight seconds. The 2.0 can also sound rather coarse when prodded. Mazdomain authority expects the CX-3 khổng lồ be a class leader in fuel economy, however, with preliminary estimates of 29 mpg in the thành phố & 35 on the highway for front-drivers & 27/32 mpg with all-wheel drive.

A Pint-Size Palace

The highlight of the CX-3, however, is its interior, which is wonderfully upscale for an entry-màn chơi vehicle & supremely comfortable—at least for front-seat occupants. Here, too, the CX-3 mimics the Mazdomain authority 2 with a slyên ổn, flowing aesthetic accented by three circular vents & a clever slat-type vent hidden within the chrome piece that slashes across the dash. Regardless of tryên ổn, the materials are good. There are tasteful red và metallic accents, contrasting stitching on the seats & dash, & suedelike seat inserts on GT models.

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Solid ergonomics make for easy use, such as the rotary HVAC knobs và a simple, central controller on the console, which helps navigate the seven-inch display perched high on the dash (the screen is also touch-activated). Anyone with seat time in the current Mazda 3 will feel right at trang chủ in the supportive driver’s seat of the CX-3. The GT’s cài đặt, with its central tachometer & digital speedometer, is our favorite, with lesser models putting the two main gauges in separate readouts that aren’t as easy to lớn view.


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The compact second row of seats is best left khổng lồ smaller folks & children. A stadium-seating layout affords good visibility from the bachồng, but leg and shoulder room are limited và the front seatbacks encroach upon comfort. Overall visibility is good despite the slender windows and high beltline, but pack light because a couple of carry-on bags may nearly fill the rear cargo compartment.

Loaded With Goods

Basic CX-3 Thể Thao models should start around $trăng tròn,000 with front-wheel drive & will feature a healthy dose of standard gear, including cloth seats with a split-folding rear bench, push-button start, a tilt-and-telescoping steering column, a rearview camera, và Mazda Connect infotainment with the central control knob. Touring models add nicer materials và accents throughout, a center armrest, an upgraded audio system with six speakers, Advanced Keyless Entry, & heated exterior mirrors, as well as options for faux leather upholstery, a premium Bose stereo, satellite radio, a power sunroof, & heated front seats.

Gr& Touring CX-3s are the overachievers, with even more premium tryên ổn & a multi-toned interior color palette, plus standard 18-inch wheels, full LED lighting, leather upholstery, navigation, automatic climate control, heated front seats, a pop-up head-up display, Bose audio, and more. While an optional SD card can also activate the navigation function in lesser models, only the GT is available with Mazda’s i-Activsense package, which includes radar cruise control; lane-departure warning; automatic smart braking; & automatic headlights, high beams, & rain-sensing wipers.

Although Mazdomain authority has yet to lớn confirm exact pricing, it’s entirely possible that a loaded CX-3 GT may push $30,000 when the lineup goes on sale this fall, considering the last CX-5 we tested stickered for 34 grand. That’s a lot of cash for such a diminutive vehicle. Yet, with its excellent road manners & attention khổng lồ detail, the CX-3 feels lượt thích it just may be worth it.


VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, front- or 4-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door hatchback

ESTIMATED BASE PRICE: Thể Thao, $20,000; Touring, $23,000; Grand Touring, $25,000

ENGINE TYPE: DOHC 16-valve Atkinson-capable inline-4, aluminum blochồng and head, direct fuel injection

Displacement: 122 cu in, 1998 ccPower: 146 hp
2800 rpm

TRANSMISSION: 6-tốc độ automatic with manual shifting mode

DIMENSIONS:Wheelbase: 101.2 inLength: 168.3 inWidth: 69.6 in Height: 60.7 inCurb weight (C/D est): 3100-3250 lb

PERFORMANCE (C/D EST):Zero to 60 mph: 8.1-8.2 secZero to 100 mph: 22.0-22.2 secStanding ¼-mile: 16.5-16.6 secTop speed: 125 mph


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