Mazda CX-30 vs Mazda CX-50 Comparison: The Inbetweeners

Mazda CX-50 vs Mazda CX-30 Comparison

With SUVs continuing to dominate the sales charts, automakers are taking a Baskin-Robbins-style, 31-flavor approach to their lineups.

Mazda’s main flavor in this class is the CX-5, a great-driving compact crossover that now occupies fourth place on the sales charts. That success makes it ubiquitous, however, and Mazda now offers two additional flavors on either side of its best-seller.

The CX-30 came first, a slightly smaller offering with a classy interior. It’s a better buy than the equivalent sub-compact Mercedes. Now here comes the CX-50, which takes Mazda in a more rugged direction. It’s a little larger than the CX-5, yet all three offer same-but-different driving experiences. With this ability to tailor your ride to your exact needs, we spent a week with both of the double-digit offerings to figure out what sets them apart.

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2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo Review: First Drive

The ol’ “too much of a good thing” idiom doesn’t seem to apply to Mazda.

The independent automaker is busy stuffing its torquey, turbocharged 2.5-liter engine into practically everything it offers, with consistent, positive results. It started with the larger models in the fleet, before trickling down into progressively smaller Mazdas. A few months ago the pumped-up four-pot arrived in the Mazda3, providing the compact car with the necessary go to match the show. And now there is this, the 2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo.

Not to put too fine of a point on it, but this CX-30 is the more important member of Mazda’s turbo family. The sub-compact crossover, which only launched a little over a year ago, is already the second-best-selling Mazda in the US, and third in Canada. If the brand is going to convince critics and shoppers alike that “Mazda” belongs in the same sentence as “BMW” or “Audi,” taking the fight to the red-hot segment is crucial.

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Toyota Corolla Cross vs Mazda CX-30: Which Small SUV Is Right For You?

It’s the era of the utility vehicle, and the market for small SUVs seems to be particularly hot right now as more and more North American new car buyers move away from sedans.

There appears to be almost a never-ending stream of brand new or completely redesigned models arriving all the time, and in the midst of all this, Toyota has just brought out the Corolla Cross. Slotting below the ever-popular RAV4 in the lineup, the Toyota Corolla Cross is a budget-conscious compact crossover with a solid powertrain, excellent fuel economy, and plenty of thoughtful standard equipment.

The size and price point make the Corolla Cross a practical competitor to the likes of the Mazda CX-30 – Mazda’s current semi-premium small compact SUV in the North American market. But how do the two really compare? Is the CX-30’s extra horsepower and stunning good looks enough to steal the Corolla Cross’s thunder? Or is the Toyota such a thoughtful, efficient family hauler that it stands on its own? It’s the Toyota Corolla Cross vs Mazda CX-30.

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Detailed Specs

Price / $22,950 - $35,400
Engine / 2.5-liter 4-cylinder / 2.5-liter turbo 4-cylinder
Power / 191 hp / 250 hp
Torque / 186 lb-ft / 320 lb-ft
Drivetrain / AWD
Transmission / 6AT
Fuel Economy (city/hwy) / 22–26 mpg / 30–33 mpg
Cargo Capacity / 20.2 cu ft

Our Final Verdict

Mazda CX-30

Performance 8.0
Features 7.0
Comfort 7.0
Quality and Styling 9.0
Value 9.0