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Discussion Starter #1
"So why should you spend the extra coin for a CX-30 over a Mazda3 aside from its higher seating position and pseudo off-roader looks?

For starters, there's more room for rear passengers. Its 36.3 inches of rear legroom provides 1.2 inches more than the 3, which doesn't sound like a lot, but it's definitely noticeable. Cargo room behind the rear seats is on par with the Mazda3 hatchback, but interestingly enough, the CX-30 provides 1.9 cubic feet less space than the Mazda3 with the rear seats folded down. It can also be optioned with roof rails for your outdoor gear, and the CX-30 debuts Mazda's new Connected Services system (standard across the lineup), which includes Wi-Fi hotspot and over-the-air updates for the infotainment system. Mazda Connected Services also interacts with the CX-30 via your personal device, allowing you to start the engine remotely, lock/unlock doors, send destination details to the navigation system, and monitor vitals like oil levels, tire pressures, and more.

With sharp styling, fun driving dynamics, loads of tech, and an impressive interior, the 2020 CX-30 should have no problem attracting would-be Mazda3 buyers who are better suited for a crossover. The automaker thinks it can snag Lexus UX and Buick Encore prospects, too. And based on our time with the small Mazda, that goal should be fairly easy to reach." ~
MotorTrend

In short, fork over $400 more to get a CX-30 over the Mazda3, unless you really like compact sedans!
 

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2020 CX-30 GS FWD, Snowflake White
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not sure where $400 comes from but Canadian MSRP is:

2020 CX-3 FWD 6-spd manual - $21,045
(n/a in CX-30)

2020 CX-3 GX FWD auto - $22,345
2020 CX-30 GX FWD auto - $23,950
($1,605 difference)
(+ $2,000 for AWD on either model)

2020 CX-3 GS FWD - $23,345
2020 CX-30 GS FWD - $26,650
($3,305 difference)
(+ $2,000 for AWD on either model)

2020 CX-3 GT AWD - $31,045
2020 CX-30 GT AWD - $33,850
($2,805 difference)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Sorry I was looking at U.S. pricing to keep a consistent theme with where the quoted text was sourced (a U.S. publication)
In Canada I can see how someone looking at the Mazda3 would be discouraged to get the CX-30 just looking at the monthly payment breakdown. Its not a realistic jump for the average car buyer.
 

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2020 CX-30 GS FWD, Snowflake White
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my error as I should have put the MSRP for the M3 not the CX-3,
 

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"... there's more room for rear passengers. Its 36.3 inches of rear legroom provides 1.2 inches more than the 3, which doesn't sound like a lot, but it's definitely noticeable. Cargo room behind the rear seats is on par with the Mazda3 hatchback, but interestingly enough, the CX-30 provides 1.9 cubic feet less space than the Mazda3 with the rear seats folded down. …"
This is something I find really odd about the CX-30. They took a Mazda3 platform and turned it into a crossover SUV, but somehow ended up with less cargo space than the original hatchback?
 

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Sorry Fuji, I unknowingly started the same comparison thread sometime after this one. I have asked admin to delete that thread and have referred users of that thread to yours.
 

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I posted this in another thread, but it probably belongs here:
for the record, I MUCH prefer The 3 Hatchback's looks to the CX-30 (it looks way too much like the CX-5 for my tastes. I wish it had a sportier look), but...
I decided on going w/the CX-30 over the 3 hatch. Sad day; I love the 3 hatch - leased the 2014 and 2017 versions.

I chose the CX-30 over the 3 Hatch for these reasons:
  • More head room in the back for sure (I'm 6'2, my brother 6'3. my head was just touching the roofline in the backseat)
  • Cargo space seemed larger (maybe due to the height?)
  • Better driving sightlines
  • interior was a lot brighter (I have NO IDEA why they made the 3 with the all black interior, including the pillars and headliner. the 3's interior is just too dark)
  • The cabin just feels a lot more spacious overall.
  • For some reason the lease payments were LOWER for the CX-30!!!
For me, the 3 Hatch looks absolutely incredible (seeing the polymetal gray 3 Hatch with the blacked-out wheels in person.... damn, the pics don't do it justice)!!! But.... the CX-30 seems more functional. That, and the lower lease payments sealed the deal.

I'm really gonna miss driving the 3...
 

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2021 PP Turbo Polymetal Gray
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I chose the CX-30 over the 3 Hatch for these reasons:
  • More head room in the back for sure (I'm 6'2, my brother 6'3. my head was just touching the roofline in the backseat)
  • Cargo space seemed larger (maybe due to the height?)
  • Better driving sightlines
  • interior was a lot brighter (I have NO IDEA why they made the 3 with the all black interior, including the pillars and headliner. the 3's interior is just too dark)
  • The cabin just feels a lot more spacious overall.
Agree. The CX30 is slightly shorter (2.6") but cargo space is more useful due to greater height and width of hatch.
I'm 6'2 and felt claustrophobic in the back of the hatchback 3 but only feel cramped in back of the CX30. Neither is really a four-adult car, unless at least two passengers are on the smaller side. I figure the hatchback makes a great 2+2 -- if rear visibility from the driver seat isn't an issue for you. And even with an all-black interior, the CX30 does not feel as dark and confining as the 3. Love the 3's red leather interior option, however. That would have been our choice if offered on the CX30!

Another big reason we chose the CX30 is ground clearance. We go off pavement from time to time during our travels and the 3's 5½ inches of clearance is much more limiting than the CX30's 8 inches.

Another factor is ride height. Three inches might not be much, but in this day of ubiquitous jacked-up pickup trucks, vans, and SUVs/CUVs, it's damned hard to see around traffic in a low-slung sporty car. Even three inches makes a notable difference.
 

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Agree. The CX30 is slightly shorter (2.6") but cargo space is more useful due to greater height and width of hatch.
I'm 6'2 and felt claustrophobic in the back of the hatchback 3 but only feel cramped in back of the CX30. Neither is really a four-adult car, unless at least two passengers are on the smaller side. I figure the hatchback makes a great 2+2 -- if rear visibility from the driver seat isn't an issue for you. And even with an all-black interior, the CX30 does not feel as dark and confining as the 3. Love the 3's red leather interior option, however. That would have been our choice if offered on the CX30!

Another big reason we chose the CX30 is ground clearance. We go off pavement from time to time during our travels and the 3's 5½ inches of clearance is much more limiting than the CX30's 8 inches.

Another factor is ride height. Three inches might not be much, but in this day of ubiquitous jacked-up pickup trucks, vans, and SUVs/CUVs, it's damned hard to see around traffic in a low-slung sporty car. Even three inches makes a notable difference.
I would not argue with anything you said. But a few things tipped me toward the three. The red interior you already mentioned with nicer door cards, especially in back, is one. I have a different take on the admittedly tighter FEELING cabin. It feels low, sporty, intimate and gives a more confident control feel behind the wheel. Dare I say the layout and instruments give off a Porsche like vibe. For practical purposes, it has all the void space I need. Lastly and most bigly the huge black wheel arch trim and wheel to arch gaps of the 30 makes we want to look away. The CX 3 handled this much better. Inferior car, sure but better looking overall. The 3 by contrast, looks as if it could have come from a 1960s Italian design studio. I always glance back after locking it up on the street. Good that Mazda can make different cars off the same excellent chassis for different buyers with different design priorities.
 

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Lastly and most bigly the huge black wheel arch trim and wheel to arch gaps of the 30 makes we want to look away. The CX 3 handled this much better. Inferior car, sure but better looking overall. The 3 by contrast, looks as if it could have come from a 1960s Italian design studio. I always glance back after locking it up on the street. Good that Mazda can make different cars off the same excellent chassis for different buyers with different design priorities.
The wheel arch trim is definitely excessive and the wheel to arch gaps are absurd. It's hard to understand how a company so devoted to elegant, clean, understated design could make such a glaring mistake in adapting the beautiful new Mazda 3 hatchback to CUV configuration. Oh, well ... it's still better looking than any other CUV on the market, including Mazda's own CX5. :)
 

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Am I missing something here? Surely your driving needs will determine which car you would/should buy. With so much in common between the 2 models it seems to me that if you are someone who drives pretty much exclusively on sealed roads you would get the Mazda3. If a bit of adventure on dirt roads and tracks with maybe gear strapped down on the roof, well then the CX30 is the go. And if you go the CX30 you still get a car that is just exciting to drive
 

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Am I missing something here? Surely your driving needs will determine which car you would/should buy. With so much in common between the 2 models it seems to me that if you are someone who drives pretty much exclusively on sealed roads you would get the Mazda3. If a bit of adventure on dirt roads and tracks with maybe gear strapped down on the roof, well then the CX30 is the go. And if you go the CX30 you still get a car that is just exciting to drive
I mostly agree. I have a CX 5 which easily out utilities the cx 30 even though it isn't as fun to drive, so I can forgo the 30 for the even more fun 3. If I only had one car? Too close to call. They are each versatile enough to be the only ride for my situation. Of course other folk's needs and wants will vary. By the way, Alex on Autos rates the 3's rough (not off) road behavior superior to the CX 30. A- vs C+. If there is a difference , I doubt it so extreme and the 3 obviously ain't off road capable. On paper the 30 with its higher profile tires would look to have an advantage on coarse pavement and gravel. Maybe the shorter wheelbase and higher cg leaves the 30 a bit less settled.. Or maybe Alex needs to recalibrate the seat of his pants. For sure, the CX5 has much a better ride than either of the other two on any surface.
 

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Some valid points there Maznut. I had to go look at the specs. I didn’t know the 3 has such low profile tyres. Although I feel that the 30’s tyres are too low for a suv and possibly contributes to the harshness and sometime jittery feel the 30 gives. Or is that suspension? I don’t know if it is the stock tyres or not but I covered near 300kms yesterday with a fair bit of dry dirt roads and the 30 did feel jittery to me on the loose surface. The other thing was I felt it was too easily induced into oversteer in bumpy corners.

Your 2 car scenario negates my argument as you already have a suv. In that case the 3 would be a better option giving you a foot in both scenarios.

I also concur with you on the CX5. I had the 2017 KF model before this and am very firmly of the belief that it was more sure footed and generally better behaved than my 30.
 
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