With the new features available on 2021 CX-30 models, would you buy it over the 2020 version?
Most significant changes:
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are now standard on all trims, and Preferred trim levels now get a power moonroof.
Price change: $100 increase for Preferred models; $350 increase for Premium models.
On sale: August
Which should you buy, 2020 or 2021? 2021, unless you want a Premium model, though the hassle of finding the right 2020 model may not be worth saving $350.
Mazda’s CX-30 subcompact SUV is a more American-sized (read: larger) subcompact than automaker’s original entrant in the class, the CX-3. It was first introduced for the 2020 model year, so it isn’t getting significant upgrades for 2021. What it is getting, however, makes the 2021 model more appealing across three of the CX-30’s four trim levels.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity are now included as standard equipment on all trim levels — neither was available on the 2020 base model — and the 2021 Preferred trim level adds a power moonroof that was previously only available on the top Premium trim. That moonroof bumps the price of the Preferred model up $100, while the Premium model experiences a reasonable $350 increase. Base and Select model pricing carries over from 2020 to 2021.
The rest of the CX-30 remains largely unchanged. Power is still provided by just one engine, a 2.5-liter four-cylinder producing 186 horsepower and 186 pounds-feet of torque. The singular transmission choice is a six-speed automatic. All models are available with front- or all-wheel drive.
Model-year 2021 base CX-30s with front-wheel drive are priced from $23,000 (all prices include a destination fee of $1,100). Upgrading to the FWD Select model, which adds things like 18-inch wheels and blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, brings the price to $25,000. The next level is the FWD Preferred, adding the aforementioned power moonroof as well as heated front seats and an eight-way power driver’s seat with memory, for $27,400. The top FWD Premium trim includes a Bose premium 12-speaker audio system, head-up display, navigation, leather upholstery and more, at a cost of $29,650. All models can be equipped with all-wheel drive for an additional $1,400.
All models feature an 8.8-inch multimedia display, which is operated exclusively by a knob controller on the center console. Standard safety features include adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning with lane-keeping assist.
The 2021 CX-30 should arrive in dealerships in August, and with modest price increases to some models is probably the better choice over a 2020. If you’re really interested in a bargain but also shopping for a loaded Premium model, you might be able to save $350 by going for a 2020, but the effort to find the one you want might not be worth that level of savings.