2022 Mazda CX-30

Consumer Reviews
0 Reviews
2022
The Car Connection
2022
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Andrew Ganz Andrew Ganz Senior Editor
January 11, 2022

Buying tip

The turbocharged engine may tempt, but the CX-30 works well enough in base form with few options.

features & specs

2.5 S AWD
2.5 S Carbon Edition AWD
2.5 S Preferred Package AWD
MPG
24 city / 31 hwy
MPG
24 city / 31 hwy
MPG
24 city / 31 hwy
MSRP
$22,200
MSRP
$28,290
MSRP
$27,650

The 2022 Mazda CX-30 is a style-forward small crossover with an upscale feel.

What kind of vehicle is the 2022 Mazda CX-30? What does it compare to?

The CX-30 is a small crossover SUV that straddles the line between mainstream models such as the Hyundai Kona and more luxurious models such as the Volvo XC40. 

Is the 2022 Mazda CX-30 a good car/SUV?

Review continues below

While far from perfect, the CX-30 has an upscale feel matched by refined powertrains. A kludgy infotainment system and a frustrating lineup—two items that wouldn’t be that hard for Mazda to rectify—hold it to a 6.0 out of 10 on our scale. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

What's new for the 2022 Mazda CX-30?

All-wheel drive is standard on every version of the CX-30 for 2022, and the automaker has tweaked the lineup accordingly. Most versions are slightly less expensive once you account for all-wheel drive.

The CX-30 is a fresh-faced companion to the CX-3, a model set for discontinuation. With its sloping roofline, the CX-30 follows the “coupe-SUV” look first started by the BMW X6, albeit with particularly good form. Inside and out, the CX-30 has an attractive, upscale look, even in somewhat modestly equipped base form.

Underhood, 2.5-liter inline-4 engines come in 186-hp base and 250-hp turbocharged forms, where they pair with 6-speed automatic transmissions and all-wheel drive. Base cars are quick enough, but turbos are more usable and entertaining in any situation. Fuel economy is just average, though, and we wish Mazda offered a hybrid version. 

The CX-30 is a small vehicle with an accordingly tight interior, though cargo space is well-utilized and the cabin has an upscale feel lacking in most like-priced rivals. Standard features are good overall, with automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control fitted to every trim. Shame that Mazda saddles these models with a clunky infotainment system that lacks touchscreen convenience. 

Crash-test scores impress, too. 

Unfortunately, anything above the base CX-30 can be a questionable value, though the pricey turbocharged versions hold their own appeal. 

How much does the 2022 Mazda CX-30 cost?

The CX-30 lineup starts at $23,425, and that’s about where we’d stop unless we jumped up to a turbocharged version. All in, a CX-30 with every feature can nudge $36,000, though the CX-30 offers performance and refinement that matches that price tag. 

Where is the 2022 Mazda CX-30 made?

In Mexico. 

6

2022 Mazda CX-30

Styling

With its sloping roofline, the 2022 Mazda CX-30 cuts a dashing profile.

Is the Mazda CX-30 a good-looking car?

The 2022 Mazda CX-30 has tidy lines that make it look more like an over-inflated Mazda 3 than a small SUV. That’s OK with us, so we grant this small car a 6 out of 10.

Curvy without excess, the CX-30 has a muscular look that can be backed up with its turbocharged engine option. Bigger wheels look best, though even the base CX-30 2.5 S punches above its price class. 

Inside, the CX-30’s imaginative interior is a lesson in restraint. We could use a few more buttons and knobs for its infotainment system, but overall the uncluttered layout provides a soothing atmosphere. If only Mazda would venture out beyond light tan and all-black hues, plus the shiny black plastic trim adorning many surfaces is prone to easy scratching.

Review continues below
6

2022 Mazda CX-30

Performance

The Mazda CX-30 handles with small-car flair.

Is the Mazda CX-30 4WD?

Mazda made all-wheel-drive standard across the lineup for 2022, but the CX-30 is not a real off-roader.  

How fast is the Mazda CX-30?

In base form, the CX-30 offers above-average scoot for a small crossover thanks to its 186-hp 2.5-liter inline-4, which is teamed with a 6-speed automatic transmission. At around eight seconds to 60 mph, it’s not especially rapid, but few drivers will really need more grunt. Those who do will find it in the somewhat pricey 250-hp turbo-4, though that figure is achieved using premium fuel. Regular unleaded drops the CX-30’s power output to 227 hp. 

The turbocharged engine option is noticeably peppier at lower engine speeds and when attempting to overtake slow-moving cars. Regardless of engine, the 6-speed automatic does an admirable job keeping the engine in its powerband and firing off quick shifts. Rivals may offer more gears, but there’s something to be said about a 6-speed automatic that just works well. 

Regardless of power output, the CX-30 corners with more verve than rivals. Its steering offers up a good deal of heft and lots of feedback, which makes it an enthusiast’s delight. It may be taller and heavier than a like-size hatchback, but the CX-30 mostly masks its extra heft.

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6

2022 Mazda CX-30

Comfort & Quality

Mazda provides the CX-30 with a quality-feeling interior, but not an excess of cargo or passenger space.

It may be small and relatively inexpensive, but the 2022 Mazda CX-30 has an upmarket feel inside for its city-size footprint.

While not especially spacious, the CX-30 furnishes better room than similarly-sized sedans and small hatchbacks, so we score it at 6 out of 10. 

Comfortable front seats offer power adjustment for the driver on most trim levels plus good space for taller and broader-shouldered occupants. The rear seat is tight for more than short distances, but four or even five can squeeze aboard for a short jaunt to lunch. With 20.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seatbacks, the CX-30 can accommodate small luggage. 

Overall, however, what sets the CX-30 apart is its luxurious feel compared to class rivals. Mazda sweats the small stuff when it comes to materials selection and small-item storage. The only caveat here is an overwhelming amount of scratch-prone shiny black plastic that the automaker bills as “piano black.” We’ve never met a Steinway this ready to scuff, though.

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8

2022 Mazda CX-30

Safety

The 2022 Mazda CX-30 is a cut above when it comes to safety tech and crash-test scores.

How safe is the Mazda CX-30?

A good array of crash-avoidance tech is joined by impressive scores from the IIHS and NHTSA which helps the Mazda CX-30 earn an impressive 8 out of 10 for its safety. 

We reach that score by adding up a Top Safety Pick Award from the IIHS, five stars overall from the NHTSA, and standard automatic emergency braking. The CX-30 even includes adaptive cruise control and active lane control as standard fare, while blind-spot monitors are included on most trims.

Outward vision could be better over the shoulder, and this model’s only other real blemish is a note from the IIHS that the top version’s LED headlights can cause a little too much glare.

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5

2022 Mazda CX-30

Features

Mazda specs the CX-30 lineup rather unusually.

The 2022 Mazda CX-30 comes in seven basic configurations, but a lack of customizability may mean some shoppers will wind up spending more than they’d like. Combine the awkward lineup with a so-so infotainment system and we land at a 5 out of 10, even though the base CX-30 is reasonably equipped for the money. 

The infotainment system utilizes a scroll wheel mounted on the center console rather than a touchscreen, which can make shuffling through the menu-intensive infotainment software a real chore. 

Which Mazda CX-30 should I buy?

The 2022 CX-30 starts at $23,425 with standard all-wheel drive, tons of driver-assistance and crash-avoidance features, an 8.8-inch display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and 17-inch alloy wheels. Even though pushbutton start is included, keyless entry requires stepping up to the next trim level. 

The Select trim costs a hefty $2,500 more for blind-spot monitors, synthetic leather seats, and rear cross-traffic alerts. A sunroof and heated front seats are paired with a few other features for an almost obscene $3,000 price hike. Yikes!

How much is a fully loaded Mazda CX-30?

Turbocharged CX-30s start at about $31,500 and come rather well-outfitted for the money, though shoppers can spend up for the Premium Plus version at $35,625 for adaptive headlights, a surround-view camera system, a heated steering wheel, and leather seats. 

Review continues below
5

2022 Mazda CX-30

Fuel Economy

The 2022 Mazda CX-30 could be more fuel-efficient.

Is the Mazda CX-30 good on gas?

While not especially thirsty, the 2022 Mazda CX-30 trails some of its competitors when it comes to fuel economy. 

Scores for the 2022 model aren’t out yet, but last year’s most frugal all-wheel-drive version was rated by the EPA at 24 mpg city, 31 highway, 26 combined. The turbocharged engine can run on regular unleaded but performs better with pricer premium fuel. It was rated at 22/30/25 mpg last year.

Review continues below
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$22,200
MSRP based on 2.5 S AWD
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6.0
Overall
Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 6
Performance 6
Comfort & Quality 6
Safety 8
Features 5
Fuel Economy 5
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