2023 Mazda CX-30 Gets Engine and Safety Upgrades; Price Starts at $24,225

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Mazda’s smallest SUV, the CX-30, returns for 2023 with a boost in horsepower and fuel efficiency for its base engine and safety enhancements across all models. While the base 2.5-liter four-cylinder sees improvements, the higher-performance turbocharged variant returns unchanged apart from a higher cost of admission, as Mazda has dropped its most affordable 2.5 Turbo trim for 2023.

Base Engine Gets More HP, Fuel Economy

The 2023 CX-30’s base engine now makes 191 horsepower (five additional horses than the outgoing model) and 186 pounds-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission and Mazda’s i-Activ all-wheel-drive system are once again standard across all models.

In addition to the small horsepower upgrade, Mazda says the base engine also gets more fuel-efficient thanks to updated cylinder-deactivation technology. For 2022, models with the naturally aspirated 2.5-liter received an EPA-rated 24/31/26 mpg city/highway/combined. For 2023, mpg climbs to an EPA-estimated 26/33/29, according to the automaker; the EPA has not published the 2023 model’s fuel ratings as of this writing.

Turbocharged Engine Gets Costlier

2021 Mazda CX-30 | photo by Kelsey Mays

The CX-30’s turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine returns with up to 250 hp and 320 pounds-feet of torque with premium fuel, or 227 hp and 310 pounds-feet of torque with regular gas. The turbo engine also sees no changes in fuel economy; it remains an EPA-rated 22/30/25 mpg. There is one change shoppers should be aware of if they are considering the turbo engine: The 2.5 Turbo trim is no longer available after the 2022 model year, and the Turbo Premium increases the engine’s starting price by $3,300.

Safety and Tech

2020 Mazda CX-30 | IIHS image

After the 2022 CX-30 earned the Top Safety Pick Plus award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Mazda is looking to hold onto the designation for its subcompact SUV. According to the automaker, the 2023 CX-30 is compliant with the agency’s new safety protocols with the addition of rear side airbags, rear seat belt pretensioners, B- and C-pillar improvements, and a shin pad added to the front and rear door trim.

Along with the passive safety upgrades, all CX-30 models once again come with a standard suite of safety and driver-assist tech including forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist, automatic high-beam headlights and adaptive cruise control. An 8.8-inch center display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity and a 7-inch digital gauge cluster are standard across all trims.

Trims, Pricing and Release Date

Mazda CX-30 | Manufacturer image

The 2023 CX-30 is expected to go on sale in November with the choice of seven trims, including five with the base engine and two with the turbo variant. Their pricing and features are broken out below:

  • 5 S: $24,225 (up $450)
  • 5 S Select: $26,675 (up $500)
  • 5 S Preferred: $29,495 (up $270)
  • 5 S Carbon Edition: $30,565 (up $700)
  • 5 S Premium: $32,335 (up $700)
  • 5 Turbo Premium: $35,075 (up $700)
  • 5 Turbo Premium Plus: $36,675 (up $700)

The S model comes with standard LED headlights and taillights, 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels and a matte grille. Inside, the base model gets an eight-speaker sound system, push-button start with keyless entry, and cloth seats. The S Select trim tacks on aluminum roof rails, blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, leatherette seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels.

Upgrading to the S Preferred adds heated front seats with eight-way power adjustability and lumbar support; the exterior gets a gloss-black grille and door mirrors with memory positioning. The S Carbon Edition builds on the Preferred model with standard Polymetal Gray exterior paint, red leather seats and trim, black 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, gloss-black heated door mirrors and a power moonroof. The S Premium variant adds more driver-assist features, including Mazda’s Active Driving Display with Traffic Sign Recognition and an adaptive front-lighting system. It also gains paddle shifters, built-in navigation, black or white leather seats, and a power liftgate.

Shoppers looking for the turbocharged 2.5-liter engine can choose from the Turbo Premium or Turbo Premium Plus. The Turbo Premium includes all the appointments of the Premium and a Bose 12-speaker premium audio system. Meanwhile, the Premium Plus layers on a 360-degree camera with front and rear parking sensors, rear cross-traffic braking and a traffic jam assist system, which adds adaptive cruise control down to a stop and hands-on lane centering at lower speeds.

Versus the Competition

Affordable Small SUV Challenge | photo by Christian Lantry

Among its subcompact rivals, the CX-30’s pricing is competitive: The redesigned 2023 Honda HR-V starts at $24,895, the Hyundai Kona at $23,285, and the Subaru Crosstrek — which also comes with standard AWD — starts at $26,220 with an automatic transmission.

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