Comparing Mazda SUVs: CX-30 vs CX-5

When you’re looking at a couple of the Mazda SUVs offered, you’ll notice a size difference right away between the two we’re comparing.

The CX-30 is slightly smaller than the CX-5, but that isn’t going to be the only difference.  The CX-30 has recently arrived to take over a spot in the lineup that was occupied by the CX-3 for many years. The smaller CX-30 seems to be just the right size, but you will want to take both Mazda vehicles for a drive to see which one has everything you want to enjoy during your daily drive.

A Similar Drive

Regardless of the model you choose, you’re going to have a big smile on your face when you get done driving one of these Mazda SUVs. Both can be had with a peppy and energetic 2.5-liter turbocharged engine that delivers torque at low rpm to give you the acceleration, driving dynamics, and fun you’re looking for. The steering of both models is ideal for carving up corners and taking on the roads that curve and twist the way you want. To enjoy this driving experience, you will want to reach up to higher trims, which might make you wonder if the price is worth it. Let’s find out.

A Difference in Style

Before you get down to the specifics of the build of the CX-30 and CX-5, you’ll notice the smaller model greatly resembles the larger of the two. Both SUVs have an attractive design with shallow headlights and taillights, a gorgeous grille, and smooth lines. The CX-30 does give you a coupe-like shape that makes it feel a bit sportier. When looking at the CX-5, you’ll see a more straightforward approach to the style. Additionally, the CX-30 has black cladding at the doors, which is taller in the rear to give the vehicle a forward-moving sensation.

Interior Qualities You’ll Love

The seats offered in these Mazda SUVs are comfortable and can rival some luxury names for the feeling you want during your drive. As you would expect, the CX-5 gives you more space, especially in the second row. This larger SUV is also offered with a large 10.25-inch infotainment screen, while the CX-30 has a smaller 8.8-inch screen for you to use.

If you move up through the trims of either model, you’ll find available black or white leather at some of the trims that bring in much more equipment. If you’re a fan of a monochromatic look, the lower trims will likely be right for you. On the other hand, if you’d like a bit more contrast, the CX-5 Signature brings you brown Nappa leather upholstery, aluminum trim, and wood elements that make it look like it belongs in a much higher category.

Using Power is a Little Different

Both of these Mazda SUVs make use of an upgraded 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission at higher trim levels. With premium fuel, you can have 250 horsepower and 320 lb.-ft. of torque for this powertrain. If you use regular fuel, the numbers are 227 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft. of torque. With the same power under the hood, how can there be a difference in the way it’s used?

The Mazda CX-30 is lighter and that makes the difference. The powertrain fits into this SUV like a glove, and that difference in weight translates to more fun, a more active ride, and more acceleration. You’ll love flipping through the gears with the paddle shifters, and you’ll be pleased to carve up the corners in the smaller Mazda.

When you’re behind the wheel of the Mazda CX-5, the ride is energetic, it’s fun, and it’s easy, but it’s not quite the same as in the CX-30. If you never drove the smaller SUV, you might not notice the feeling that’s missing or the fact that you’re carrying more weight in the CX-5, but when you compare these two and drive both of them, you certainly will notice that difference.

What Technology is Included?

You might expect to find the same list of standard features at each trim level for these two Mazda SUVs, but that’s not the case. The Signature trim of the CX-5 is where you’re going to find the complete package of items that you want during your drive. This model gives you a full safety package, a small moonroof, and the digital display area you want to enjoy when you’re out on the road.

The CX-30 doesn’t have a trim that compares to the Signature model of the CX-5. That’s just fine though, this smaller SUV is smaller, and it’s supposed to be less expensive for you to drive. You won’t find as many tech items in this smaller vehicle than you will in the CX-5.

Excellent Cargo Capacity in Each Vehicle

Another place where we need to compare what you’re going to find is the cargo area. You’re likely going to use one of these Mazda SUVs for carrying some gear, bringing some cargo with you, and sometimes having both passengers and stuff in the rear of your vehicle. The Mazda CX-5 is the larger of the two, with 30.9 cubic feet of room with the rear seats up. This model has a 40/20/40 split-folding rear seat to give you the cargo versatility you’re looking for. With the seats folded down, this area expands to 59.5 cubic feet.

The smaller Mazda CX-30has a 20.2 cubic-foot cargo hold to give you some room for what you need to bring home. With the rear seat down, this SUV gives you 45.2 cubic feet of cargo room. The larger SUV does give you a spare tire, which can be an important factor when you take a road trip.

Which SUV Should You Drive?

If you’re looking for driving fun and aren’t concerned with size and features, the Mazda CX-30 with the turbocharged engine makes a lot of sense. On the other hand, if you want more cargo room, better interior materials, and more features, you’ll want to choose the Mazda CX-5 when you visit your local dealer.