Review: 2019 Mazda CX-3 Grand Touring AWD
What's. Up everybody Matt Moran here for another car review this is of course the 2019, Mazda, cx-3, Grand, Touring all-wheel drive huge, thanks to Mazda for providing me with this very cool little cx-3 to review for you guys today so. About, the cx-3 well had a very light refresh, for 2019 here, but, it didn't really need much change because it still looks fantastic I, absolutely love especially in the sole red metallic paint it just really really pops but, I really love how you have a little bit of sharper, nose there up front that's a signature, trade of all these Mazdas, these days and just looks so good, and they get those piercing, headlamps, with a nice little LED accents, that also look very attractive coming. Down to the sides I also really love how you know this body line that flows starting, from the hood down through the sides and, out towards, the back there, and looks really good you know they didn't go overkill, with the, black plastic, around the fenders and stuff either you know even though you have to have that for these small crossovers, these days I think, it's very tastefully, done I like these 18-inch wheels as well I think those look really good I also really like the c-pillar treatment, they're how they kind of painted that little back. Portion black, and I think that looks pretty nice as well I also really appreciate that it doesn't look too squished, in the back you know a lot of these small compact, crossovers. They look so squished, in the back it really makes for a disproportional. Look this, looks very proportional. I think and a little bit more flowing and just, a little bit of a better, look out back there than a lot of the competitors which I really appreciate, I also really like you know the nice LED tail lamps you have here you also get that dual exhaust which look very good and a little bit of a sport of your touch here for the cx-3 and so. Overall I think it's a really good look from just about every angle first, for the interior of the 2019, cx3, well it's a pretty nice place to be in a lot of ways so first off thing that on these seats in these very nice parchment, leather seats, here in the Grand Touring trim the top of the line trim here and they're very comfortable seats, they, also have with this Premium Package memory, functionality. As well as power lumbar and power seat adjustment, here and also, I have heated seats here as well in the Grand, Touring version which are very nice and very comfortable, seats really nice and supportive too I mean they don't look like they have super aggressive bolstering, up here by the torso but they actually hold you in place really, really well also. Thigh support is nice substantial. And so overall just very nice soft comfortable, but. Very supportive seats as well next, to the steering wheel here in the cx-3 which is basically, the same as any other Mazda, steering wheel has a nice thinner rim to it nicely, leather wrap though has a great, nine in three grip nice little ten and two notches just, a few buttons here on it and this one again me Grand Touring you have the adaptive cruise so that is. Built. Into the steering wheel functions. There as well then, you even have paddle shifters here in the cx-3 which is also a nice inclusion, here and gives. A little bit of a sporty ER vibe and so overall just a great steering wheel gauges, are really, nice and simple here in the cx-3, very similar to the Mazda 3 that, I reviewed previously, but. There I just really admire the simplicity of them you have a nice large tachometer, front and center which is very, sporty and I appreciate, that and you also have a little digital speed read out there in the bottom of it which is cool then, on the right hand side used to have a fuel gauge and a basic, a trip computer there with just will you know calculate, your average mpg, s and a few other basic, things on the left hand side though you basically have a gear position indicator and, then also your trip odometer there, which is a very simple, again you know there are some other vehicles, that will have a little bit of a fancier, gauge. Set up here these days in this class but, you, know I think this gets the basics, done well, and you, know it, just depends on how much tech you want but I think you know this will be more than enough for, most people with just the basics and nothing additional one, cool feature that you do have with a/c x3, which only a couple other competitors, have is this optional heads-up display which is only on the Grand Touring trim here, of the cx-3 and I'm. Not a huge fan of these little pop-up ones but, a lot of the other ones in the segment like the Hyundai kind of do also have a little pop-up display like that as well it, doesn't work quite as well to me as the actual ones that are projected onto the windshield because you still look down a little bit for these.
Little Pop-up ones but it's cool and here, with, the Premium Package in the Grand Touring version the cx-3, here you also do get traffic, sign recognition so, it'll highlight speed, limits and stop signs things like that which is kind of cool in addition, to showing you your speed there so. It's a nice feature I guess you know but certainly something I could live without to come, over to the side of the dashboard here up top you have the 7 inch at Mazda Connect system here now it's unfortunately, this being that ca'line shrim you only still get the seven inch display which is a base display, and all the other Mazdas, and the higher nia, ranges, but still, is a good display still all the same great stuff you get in the 8 inch display, just a little bit smaller just looks a little small on top of the dash there but, it works the same as all the other Mazda systems I've reviewed over the past several years you know it's touchscreen, whenever, you're stopped but, then if you're moving if to use this controller, which, is a nice controller it always feels great you know nice knurled, metal on it here and feels, pretty high-quality and, definitely better than most stuff in this class so that's still great, unfortunately. Though there isn't any apple carplay or Android auto even though that was promised, for other 2019, Mazdas unfortunately. The cx-3 doesn't, get it here I thought it was going to get it for 2019 but it is still absent, now, you can get a retrofit, kit from maza any infotainment. Display. From, like 2014, and up that, has this system, in these Mazdas you can get it retrofitted, at, your dealer, but it's $200, plus labor so after it's all said and done it's about $400, so, it is possible to get and maybe you could negotiate that into the deal if you're wanting, that and just, have the dealer do that for you but it doesn't come standard, here on the 2019, cx3 unfortunately, which is a bummer considering, all the competitors basically, especially, when you get to their top trim levels do have it as standard, but, anyway you. Know still like I said a good infotainment display and, you has Sirius, XM and all that kind of stuff and pretty, easy to navigate and, use coming.
Down You just have your heated, seat controls and, heated steering wheel control there as well and then you have auto climate control here in the Grand Touring version as well but it doesn't show you any displays, it's just you, just go to the auto thing and you still have to slide, these little knobs around so you, know not quite as high-tech as some of the other ones where you can actually I have a little display there, but so, they work great and again more nice metal. Finishes. Or what feels like metal might be plastic but still feels very nice and then, coming down you, have your first, storage space here which is a nice large deep Center cubby you also find two USB, Jack's and also, a power outlet in there and also an auxilary jack as well so, great to have all those and a very deep usable, space although it is on a pretty steep incline, so things are going to slide towards, the back of it there but, nice nonetheless coming. Back over to the doors here you have a nice large bottle, holder. Another little small pocket as well and so great usable space there and it's good that has good bottle holders because the, couple our setup is really strange in the cx-3, so, you, have this little area here that's open. Partially. You have like one and a half cup holders here out in the open but as you'll see they're squares, so, first off this center armrest we'll get this out of the way it is nice and softly padded, and, feels great to rest your elbow on but anyway you open that up and doesn't really seal anything off it's just over like hovering over these two, squares and a rectangle, here in the back so it's. Just weird you can use them I guess as storage and I guess they give you the capability. To do whatever you want with them because you hit these little buttons and then you have this little like stabilizer. Basically, that. Comes and you know kind of acts as a cup holder but still not a very secure cup holder by any means and. You know and you're quartering, and stuff like that your drinks are still gonna be going, left and right and, so. Not not, very good couple of our solutions, here I'm not sure what was wrong with just standard you know two cup holders and a little square you, know copy, area and behind it but, they chose to go a little bit of a different route here for whatever reason, I'm, personally not a fan of it but you know maybe it works for some people I don't know but anyway just a little bit of an interesting. Thing to note there but, that's about it as far as all the storage space up front here but one other, nice little things I do want to mention here about the. Cx-3 interior that I really like is first, off this nice red, accenting. You have around these round vents. For the air vents and I think it's just a nice little touch also, another thing that's very commendable is you have padded, knee, rest here by the transmission, tunnel which even. In some high-end BMWs, they can't figure out that people want this to be padded when you're on long trips and you're resting your knee against this it's really nice to have it padded and so that's, outstanding, that the cx-3 has that here at least on the Grand Touring trim and again it's something you really don't see in almost any of the other competitors so that. Just gives it a much more premium, feeling interior, here backseat space in the cx-3, isn't. Great even. In this segment so obviously. You know a lot of the other vehicles in this segment are also very, tight, these, small, crossovers, are really. Best, used as two speakers but you can't use the seats of a pinch now I'm five-foot-nine me sitting behind myself, I do fit, but my knees, are basically, in the seat back there so if anyone's taller than five foot nine you're, not gonna be able to fit back there at least as far as leg room goes comfortably, head. Room is pretty plentiful there so no complaints as far as that goes but it's just you know just feels a little snug back there you do a full down center armrest which has, somewhat. Of a couple door arrangement, there they kind of pop up but again not, great cupholders again for the backseat occupants, either but does have a nice soft you know armrest there there's also bottle holders and the doors back there but that's about it as far as amenities for the rear seat occupants there aren't any air vents no, USB, jacks or anything like that but.
A Lot of the other competitors in this segment don't have that stuff either but. Just it's just you know not a very roomy, back seat that's, this the main thing there so, you, know it just depends, on your your, situation, what your going to be using that backseat for but, if you do want a usable backseat I would recommend spending a few grand extra and just going after the cx-5 that. Has much more space after, you know just a couple thousand dollars extra trunk. Space in the cx-3 is a similar, story to the back seats so you, know it's a little bit less than even some of the other competitors in this segment although, a lot of them do also have a pretty shallow floor and that's my main complaint here with this cargo areas it's just pretty shallow tonight they did that to make it a level load, floor there so if you fold the seats flat it'll all be level. But you know you can remove that little. Tray there and then you'll see it does go down deeper, so you do have a little more space there if you do need it but. It still isn't a ton of space as either as far as depth or as far as you know how wide or how long. It is and so you know I mean it's decent, but you know to be perfectly honest, the Mazda 3 has much, more cargo space and. It's sedan form and so, you know these crossovers it's, you know if you want the all-wheel drive you obviously can't get that with the Mazda 3 currently, although will be offered on the new 2019, version the Mazda 3 but, for right now if you do absolutely need all-wheel drive the cf3 seems to make sense but otherwise I honestly think the Mazda 3 has a more spacious, interior more cargo space and, you. Know does it all for a little bit less money as well let's, start up and go for a drive the. Cx-3 here, has the nice slim Mazda key that I absolutely love nice, metal buttons on it is out here which is a great touch of course is keyless access keyless, entry and push-button start, here in the Grand Touring trim especially, so anyway you sleeve the key in your pocket at the end of start button, and.
It Starts right up alright so setting off in the 2019, Mazda, cx-3, Grand, Touring well. The first thing that I think you notice about these is, you can have a nice low sitting position position I actually have my seat up pretty, high here, just, to kind of give me a little bit better, visibility but you can get this seat super, low so even taller folks, should be able to really, have a nice seating position here in the, cx-3 which is really cool a lot of these other crossovers, forced you to sit up very very high and this one doesn't which I really appreciate, other things to note here though it's just a really great, driving, position with everything else with the mazi like I said all that everything's, very easy to use it's. Very easy to see out of as well you have pretty thin eight pillars here a good, view out of the sides although you do have this, is common with all vehicles, in this segment since they're so scrunch the b-pillar is like right next to your line of vision whenever you're looking over, it's like you're staring straight into a pillar instead of actually having window, but. Again, that's something you're gonna encounter and just about every vehicle in this segment and. The note of the back is also pretty good as long as you don't have those rear headrests, up now they do have to be up if you have people sitting back there because otherwise that, to be hunched over and be very uncomfortable for them but. As long as you don't you know regularly, carry tall people in the back that you should have a pretty good view out of the back as well other, things I'm noticing here about the cx-3 though early on is just there's such good drivers. Vehicles, everything, is very precise, there's than in guessing games everything, does exactly what you expect it to do in a very natural way throttle. Response is immediate and sharp even whenever you're not in the sport mode here brakes, also, very, nice progressive. Feeling, to them but they are very responsive and, start biting around to the top of the pedal and so all those things the things that you know, used to drive are the things that are spectacular. But we'll go ahead and put it into the sport, mode here it does have a sport mode which is really cool that it does and let's turn down onto this back road here, and see, how it does, here. We go. It's, cancer. It, makes a bunch of fuss and drama, you're not going quite as fast as it feels like you're going but. So anyway the, cx-3 here only runs the 2 litre SKYACTIV, four-cylinder engine does 146. Horsepower, 146. Pound-feet of torque and. It'll do is there to 60 in 8.1. Seconds. And honestly it feels a little quicker than that that sounds like a very slow number, I know but, this, engine is just so eager, to rev and it just immediately, just wants to go for it not even just in sport mode but there's a nice little button at the bottom, of the throttle pedal whenever you're flooring, it when you feel that click it'll immediately give you a downshift and nose do you want to you know have all the performance, I like that kind of makes it very clear there isn't any waiting around or, any vagueness you, know in it it knows you know whenever you hit stomp on it like that okay you want everything let's, go for it and I appreciate, that and. So you know it's all running through a 6-speed automatic too so there isn't any kind of slushy, CVT.
To Worry about like many of the competitors that, are absolutely dreadful to drive with those teeny T's I still can't stand this and I'm, so thankful Maz is sticking, with an automatic it, just makes, for such a better driving experience in, my opinion. It'll, hold gears and it just it feels so much sporty-er, but just so much more natural to even if you're not an enthusiast you just appreciate it you know acting, normally, and not having some weird rubber band thing going on like maybe these CB T's do, but. Anyway it's just in sport mode it likes to leave it in these higher rpm so it's, just you know cruising, at 3500, 4000, rpms and totally content to leave it there so. Again it that'm it makes it even more willing but move ahead and take it out of the sport, mode here and, then it comes down and chills out. But. It still is, very responsive. And gives, you all the power it has whenever you requested, so I mean yeah you know it doesn't have a ton of power but it really, utilizes. Every one of those hundred and forty six horsepower very very well and that's, that's again very commendable it means this doesn't feel really, slow, I mean yes it doesn't feel quick. And you, know you're sitting there watching it go nuts and you're like okay I can totally manage, this you know it's not going to wow you or anything but. It. Just it delivers, it a very satisfying, way if that makes any sense and so it's. It's definitely a better experience I think than most of the competitors, now you know you can get for example the turbo motor at the Hyundai Kona that's a little peppier will definitely give you some better straight line performance, but. You know if you go for the regular engines any of these crossovers, this one is one of the best I think another, thing we'll go ahead and put it back into the sport mode here and let's try out the manual shifting, now you just slap it over but then you do have these paddles like I mentioned earlier so we're. Just coasting here. Pretty. Responsive. Try upshifts. Some ships are a little bit more delayed but honestly. Down shifts are almost, like ZF quick almost not, quite but very, very good this 6-speed automatic is pretty good for mozz it's not best-in-class, or, anything but. It does do a very good job if you do want to you know be sporty with it especially, those down it's just really really gratifying, actually, do another try, of the paddles, here. Yeah. It's it's pretty good you know it's again not amazing, and honestly like I said it's a pretty intelligent automatic, so most, people I think it makes sense to just leave it in the automatic, mode and and, just, leave it at that but you know it's nice that you can use the PALS if you want to and I really appreciate, that that, were coming up some corners here now it is pretty, cold and you, know a little salty, and a little damp and some spots I'm not be able to push it quite as much as I usually do let's. Still. Try out this handling, and this is where I mean Mazdas are usually. Some of the best in class as far as handling and the cx-3 totally, fits in with that this. Is just so. Effortless, so light so sharp, steering. Is so accurate. And, it's lighter but very precise, and sporty, and. Just. Feels crazy it's got my camera gear flying around back there but man, this is it handles, so well so these are pretty light too even in the all-wheel-drive fully. Loaded Grand Touring trim is, still got like 29 50 pounds but man this this engine to the sport mode it's just as hanging out of 5,000, rpms it's, really. It's. Just what's the revit little heart out here and just give it all it's got it's it's really commendable. This thing handles so so well I'm actually gonna take it out of the sport by just to let this engine relax a little bit, but. Yeah, it just handles really great in the field will drive you also get some torque vectoring going on to which, I think I actually felt, there for a split second so it's a brake based, system, but, it'll actually kind, of you know help to tuck in the nose there a little bit and felt. Really good but it's just again this is you have a little bit of a lower sitting position than some of the other crossovers, and just a little bit of a firmer and less floaty suspension. Than a lot of the others it, just makes, for a very good feeling, set up and I mean. I've driven a decent amount of the competitors, not all of them so I can't say definitively but, how'd of all the competitors I've driven this is hands-down the best handling one runner, up would be the Kona for me that kind of turbo was decent. Handling is pretty good for crossover, but still not as good as the Mazda, and then, some of the other stuff that I did the Nissan, Rogue Sport didn't handle nearly this well the, Jeep.
Renegade You, know had pretty low limits, it was fun but didn't. Handle nearly as well the Fiat, 500x, also was, a lot sloppier, in the corners still handled decently well but this. Definitely, takes the crown in my ranking, of all the ones I've driven so far and so. Rather. Really good handling I am impressed that now I've actually already put about 85 miles on this vehicle over the past few days and I'm. Actually it's I enjoy, driving, it it's really, actually fun, and, entertaining. And, yes you don't have a ton of power but for a run around especially, here in the winter time when you can't really go nuts anyway it, actually, feels really good, to drive it I've actually really, been enjoying my time with it another, acceleration, here this time I'm not in sport mode we're starting at second and see how let's. See it immediately there's no, immediately. Figures out exactly what, I want to do I. The floor and it just goes nuts, and so. It's. It's, the enthusiasts, small crossover, really, it's, just fantastic and it handles so well so you know I think honestly it the. Handling, is basically. Almost as good as the mazda3 to me but just usually, with a crossover you give up a little bit you sacrifice, a little this. I don't really feel any kind of sacrifice, going on it doesn't seem you. Know he simply you know just about as good as all the sedans, to now run some. 18-inch, wheels of at large we're here you know as some all, season tires not. They're nothing amazing as far as the tire set up for anything goes but. It's, just handles. Just really really well I think that lightweight really comes into play but it's also just the way Mazda, I don't know what their secret sauce is for making everything handles. Amazingly, as they do but I mean all these mosses is just so fun to drive so engaging to, drive and. Very. Just, satisfying. To drive on eat, whether you're running errands, or trying, to you know rush down a back road either. Way it's just always a good experience this. Comes down to exactly what you need the cx-5 is also a ton of fun although that doesn't have as good of handling it is very good handling but not quite, this good just, simply because the. Cx-5 is higher. Heavier. You know larger, so you know Jeff that's just physics but it still handles very good and it's, probably the best in its segment as well, so. But you know if you are okay with the smaller size you don't need you, know as. Much space as the cx-5 offers, the cx-3 is a great option here obviously, like I said the Mazda 3 would. Probably still be my pick in this segment in price category, just because you, have a little bit more space and you, know still have great. Handling, but anyway. I'm, gonna have this vehicle for an entire week thanks to Mazda here so I'm gonna drive around for the rest of the week here then I'll come back give you guys my final fuel economy my. Thoughts on the pricing, and anything else that I noticed during my week of driving here all right so I've been driving the cx-3 for, a week now and I've put about 126. Miles on it and it's been an enjoyable time here in the cx-3 now, you. Know it's just everything, about it is just so, accurate. You know I just I love how dialed, and everything, is there's, never been a time. During my driving where I've been you know waiting for it or I've been you know frustrated. By it everything. Is very satisfying, whenever I use you know for our responses great brakes feel great steering, feels great handling, is great power. Is, adequate, you know and, all.
Those Things just make, for you know nice, ownership. Experience I think if you were to daily drive one of these you, know aside from again if you're merging onto the highway and need a little bit more power you. Know this might you know make you wish for a little bit more every once in a while but. Other than that you know it's a great driving experience one, thing though that hasn't. Been super, great was my fuel economy now this is the all wheel drive version, so, it's not gonna be quite as fuel-efficient, at the front wheel drive version but. It's still a dis. Underperformed. A little bit from, what I was expecting so, these are rated at 27, to the city 30, on the highway for combined average of 29 in, my wake of driving here I got twenty four point four mpg. So you, know BG lower than even that city rating and I did do a little bit of highway driving not a ton but you know probably. At, least fifteen or twenty miles maybe of highway driving and so I was hoping will, be a little bit higher and that's worth mentioning, though that I did do a little bit of idling, for a while maybe about you know twenty to thirty minutes tops of, idling, so that did bring the average down I did see the average to get up as high as like about. 25, mpg, cell, you know maybe and a half mpg better than what's, recorded here now but still not. Quite as fuel-efficient. And again this comes down to you know a little bit of a heavier weight over the Mazda, 3 but. You know it's not really too far off from the cx-5, either, so, you. Know I think as far as you. Know fuel economy advantages, go I don't know if you're gonna get a huge amount of advantage. Out of the cx-3 because I've noticed that I've been driving, this vehicle harder, and pushing this engine a lot more than, I had to in the cx-5 with it's an extra amount of horsepower so, I think that's, kind, of what I'm noticing, here is that yes. You have a smaller engine and technically if you're just coasting, along you'll, get a better fuel economy but, in real world driving you, know I'm having to floor this way more often than I did in the cx-5, and so for those reasons it's. Going up to redline more often and so it's burning, more gas and I think that's kind of why the. Fuel economy isn't quite as high as I was expecting, the, last thing I mentioned here about the cx-3 is the price of it though, and this is another spot where it's kind of in a little bit of a tricky situation so. This. One asked us is the fully loaded Grand Touring trim a Grand Tour in terms the only way you can get these, LED, headlamps. With the accent lighting and the better visibility at night otherwise you're stuck with halogen head headlights. Even on the regular. Even the base and also the Touring mid-level trim of the cx-3, still, sticks, you with those halogen headlamps which I just really, don't like using at night anymore. And so it's kind of unfortunate keeps, it in this higher trim because it really, the Grand Touring trim I mean the Touring trim makes. Some sense and I could see that being you know a good alternative to some of the competition, and some of the stuff within mazda but once, you hope to this Grand Touring model I mean this one's just under 29,000, before, the Premium Package this one has which, you have to add if you want the drivers power memory, seat and the, heated steering wheel and also the auto dimming rear view mirror those are only in the Premium Package now there are seven hundred and ten dollars now, I will say the heat of student was great and worth $700. On its own I think what, that just drives the price up even more so this one is almost at $30,000. And, whenever you're getting up to this Vehicles has tested, price of twenty nine six hundred and twenty-five dollars, that's, where you're getting some pretty competitive stuff, and that's even with in Mazda I mean if Mazda you can basically get, the.
Second, Level up on the cx-5 the Touring trim with, it's nicer, you know leatherette seats for some of these heated, seats all that type of stuff including LED headlamps, all that is included, in that touring trim of the cx-5, for about the same money you get way more space more power, you. Know a larger, nicer, feeling vehicle inside better storage spaces. That type of stuff and so. It really enough you want an SUV. I honestly, think, you're better off going for the cx-5, and, yeah. If you want you like the heat of steering well you do have to go up and spend a few thousand more and, so you know even if you want to go baseball, over baseball, you know the cx-5 is like four thousand or so dollars extra, over. The cx-3, so, there, is a price jump there the. Pen if you're going trim four trim but, like I said you know you get some really nice features in the torch some of the cx-5 that, are also here reserved, for the Grand Tour trim the cx-3 so it's kind of a wash to me so I feel like you're, better off just going to the cx-5 even if you do have to spend a couple bucks extra, and. Then. If you don't need all-wheel drive and you want to stay at the cx-3 price point you can actually save some money going with the Mazda 3 so. It's. Kind of a tricky, situation now, compared to some of the other competition, if you have to have a compact, crossover for, whatever reason, you like the smaller dimensions, and, you just want to hire a ride height but you want a smaller engine or something the. Cx-3 is I think probably my favorite, in the class now for this price point again, you can get yourself into a Kona, with the turbo engine and that has more power handling. Isn't quite as good you do have a dual clutch auto in those which is a little weirder not nearly as precise, and natural. Feeling as this six-speed automatic in the cx-3, so you do give up some stuff there's a lot of the interior materials are a lot cheaper in the Hyundai than they are here in the Mazda as well so, you do, give up some stuff but if you want more power the Kona is the way to go for this price point I think but, if you want a good driving experience, I honestly think personally, I would rather have a nicer, interior, and. The better handling, the you, know just more accurate, you know not having to deal with a dual-clutch at Hyundai I would. Go for the cx-3 over the coat of personally, just, because I think is that enthusiast, it's a little more dialed into what enthusiasts, want and the responsiveness, they once and, you, know everything, responding, to your commands, so, you know it, just depends, on what you want I think for a certain, niche of people it will be great for. Everyone else I think there are you know some of other options even within Mazda that are great choices but, yeah all these models these days are fantastic, you can't really go wrong with either of them but. Anyway huge thanks, once again to Mazda for providing me at the cx-3 relief you guys today lemon a your thoughts when in the comments below thank you guys very much for watching I'll see you next time take care.