Mazda’s CX-30 is an extremely impressive compact SUV.
Superb styling, a premium interior that wouldn’t look out of place in an Audi, sharp handling and excellent refinement are among its many hallmarks.
I spent a week with the CX-30 when it was first released around 18 months ago but was glad to enjoy a refresher drive when Mazda brought its range to Edinburgh for motoring hacks to enjoy.
Diesels used to be de rigueur but we now know they produce dangerous particles and so petrol power is making a comeback.
That’s bad news for big, heavy SUVs like the Audi Q7 or BMW X5, which need a diesel’s low range torque to get them moving without having to rev them like crazy.
A petrol unit suits a smaller, much lighter car such as the Mazda CX-30 much better – especially when it’s one of Mazda’s excellent engines.
The 2.0 litre Skyactiv engine under the bonnet of my test car developed 186hp. That’s enough to do 0-62mph in 8.6 seconds and reach a top speed of 127mph. Fuel economy, meanwhile, nudges just shy of 50mpg.
Prices start at £22,670 and there are five trim levels to choose from: SE-L, SE-L Lux, Sport Lux, GT Sport and GT Sport Tech. I drove the Sport Lux model, which costs £27,805 and comes with niceties including leather seats, electric sunroof, heated seats, dual zone climate control and keyless entry.
Looks great and drives well too
Dressed in Mazda’s stunning soul red colour, the CX-30 is a fantastic looking car. Its next best attribute is refinement. Sitting at 60mph in sixth gear it’s a good few decibels quieter inside than any of its rivals.
The interior is excellent, with comfortable leather seats, a clear display screen with rotary control, and buttons that are well laid out, easy to use and built to last. You would need to trade up to an Audi Q3 before you would find an interior that’s any better.
Room in the back seats and boot should be plenty for most, though Mazda can’t quite match class leaders such as the capacious Skoda Karoq.
Few people will emerge from the CX-30 feeling anything but delighted though. It’s a worthy sibling to the larger and equally impressive Mazda CX-5, and light years better than its days-are-surely-numbered little brother the CX-3, which now feels like the black sheep of the family.