Mazda set the standard for the quickly growing league of subcompact SUVs with the 2016 Mazda CX-3 – and for a new era of go-anywhere freedom. Mazda took a human-centric approach to developing its first small SUV. Instead of looking at what the competition was doing, the unconventional carmaker instead asked what form this model would take if its young and creative users were to be in the ideal position at every point of contact with the car.
Hence the exceptionally ergonomic heads-up cabin and human-machine interface, safe and easy-to-use smartphone connectivity system, and extensive line-up of advanced active safety technology. Moreover, the responsive yet efficient SKYACTIV-G powertrain brings exceptional car-like handling, with the choice of economical FWD or intelligent, user-friendly AWD. It all makes the CX-3 a smart choice for a broad range of needs: A vehicle that connects with its owners and fosters their independent, active lifestyles.
Exterior – Fresh, New and Alive
In typical Mazda fashion, the CX-3’s progressive shapes exude fun and do it with dignity, mirroring the active lifestyle and enlightened, independent outlook of the average buyer. So, while sharing many KODO – Soul of Motion traits with other Mazdas, from the sculpted, flowing lines to the compact rear-leaning cabin, the CX-3’s boldface, large wheels, side mouldings and high beltline also unmistakably express its go-anywhere SUV character. Up front, the high-nosed grille with seven silver fins and chromed signature wings extending into the sharp headlamp signature clearly show the way forward for the Mazda brand.
The glinting predator-like eyes feature full LED headlamps with light-guiding technology that illuminates the portion of the wing within the headlamp unit (GT). Larger than life Indeed, all KODO models are characterised by a strong footing, but the CX-3 took this a “step” further with substantial 18-inch aluminum wheels (GT). The shiny machined outer surface finish of their five sets of three-dimensionally contoured spokes contrasts sharply with the gunmetal grey metallic contour surfaces. Around back, the cleanly crafted tailgate design featuring a license plate recess emphasizes the CX-3’s short overhang, at the same time concealing the rear-parking camera.
Interior – Evolved, Ergonomic Comfort
Like all new Mazdas, the CX-3 is driver-oriented and driving focused. Behind the wheel, it offers class-beating adjustability to make the experience a pleasure for people of all sizes. The seat has 260mm of movement range front-to-back and 40mm vertically, while the steering wheel tilts 45mm and adjusts 50mm telescopically.
Together with the symmetrical pedals, optimally positioned gauges and controls, and top-class front shoulder and legroom, this also helps prevent fatigue on long trips. The SUV’s high eye point provides drivers with an excellent view of the road and the ability to see the top 20% of a 100cm child (or similarly sized objects) in front of the CX-3. The layout and abundance of glass also delivers good rearward visibility, even diagonally – helpful when changing lanes or reversing out of parking spaces.
Connectivity, Functionality & Equipment
Cabin functionality in the CX-3 was built around Mazda’s new-generation human-machine interface. It has all vital controls like the pedals, gearshift, steering wheel and rotary commander ergonomically positioned to feel like extensions of the driver’s body.
The Active Driving Display (GT), among the first head-up displays in its segment, plays a crucial role, providing real-time driving data in the driver’s forward field of view. Speed, directions and active safety warnings from the CX-3’s i-ACTIVSENSE active safety systems are among the three items of real-time information displayed at any given time, prioritised according to importance. That and other driving data can also be viewed on the instrument cluster, which features a large central analogue tachometer with a digital speedometer and other gauges.
- Mazda Media