By Larry Lark, contributor
The Mazda CX-30 Crossover made its North American debut a year ago, and the 2021 edition builds on that momentum.
Featuring sleek styling, driving dynamics, and craftsmanship, the well-appointed, all-wheel drive crossover seats five adults, and delivers the freedom to match active lifestyles.
My tester came with a 2.5-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine mated to a Skyactiv drive six-speed automatic transmission with sport mode. The combination delivers 227 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque, and 30 miles per gallon fuel economy as estimated by the EPA.
Other features coming with the turbo engine are larger tailpipes, gloss black door mirrors, and a turbo badge.
The “Premium Plus” trim level creates an elevated experience that adds Bose 12-speaker premium audio, Sirius XM satellite radio, navigation system, leather seats, power lift gate, adaptive front lighting system, shark fin antenna, roof rails, paddle shifters, and LED signature headlight and taillight illumination.
Its compact profile help it gracefully navigate through tight turns, while its bold proportions provide ample space to travel with all the essentials.
CX-30 also comes in 2.5S, Select Package, Preferred Package and Premium Package trims.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come standard on all of this year’s models. Other standard goodies include Bluetooth hands-free phone, two front USB inputs, and electronic parking brake.
CX-30 is equipped with power windows, rain-sensing windshield wipers, push-button start, rearview camera, 19-inch aluminum alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, power moonroof, heated seats and steering wheel, and rear privacy glass.
With an appreciation for things not just well made, but well designed, Mazda wonders view interior design and craftsmanship with the utmost regard. New features include a frameless auto-dimming rearview mirror, chrome finishes, and a black upper dash reflect Mazda’s commitment to beautiful – yet functional – styling.
The beauty of a crossover is it offers sports utility versatility, yet drives like a sedan. The CX-30 glided down freeways and curvy backroads with equal grace, providing a refined, quiet, smooth ride.
That doesn’t happen by magic. CX-30 incorporates dynamic stability control, traction control, and ABS with brake assist, along with a myriad of safety features.
That list is headlined by Mazda radar cruise control with stop and go, lane departure warning system, lane keep assist, blind sport monitoring, driver attention alert, and high beam control which helped on several rainy, windy nights.
My personal favorite was rear cross-traffic alert, which saved me backing out of my driveway. The feature automatically applies the brakes when the CX-30 is reversing at speeds between
two and four miles per hour, and either an obstacle or crossing vehicle is detected.
All things considered, the CX-30 Crossover is your choice if you want a little panache and sophistication sprinkled in with some off-road versatility. And the price is affordable, not in the break the bank category.
Base Price: $35,400
Price As Driven: $35,400
Destination charge is included in base price. Vehicles are provided by the manufacturer. List price may vary at local dealerships.