The 2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo Is Essentially a Smaller, Taller Hot Hatchback
It's the same powertrain you'll find in the new Mazda3 Turbo, just in a higher-riding package.
Now that the Mazda3 is getting a turbocharged, 2.5-liter engine and all-wheel drive for 2021, why stop there? Surely this torquey, turbo drivetrain could bring Mazda's other small models to life. Mazda seems to think so, because, alongside the turbo Mazda3, it will introduce a similarly boosted subcompact crossover: the 2021 CX-30 2.5 Turbo.
Enhancements to the CX-30 2.5 Turbo closely mirror those made to the 2021 Mazda3 Turbo and start with the addition of the aforementioned power plant. Both produce 227 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque on 87-octane gas, though if fueled on 93, numbers leap to 250 and 320 respectively.
Although not divulged at first, Mazda confirmed to The Drive that the CX-30 Turbo will feature a "very similar" six-speed automatic transmission as the one found in the Mazda3 Turbo. The same goes for the all-wheel-drive system; it's Mazda's predictive I-Activ system, but with added off-road programming to utilize the CX-30's extra ground clearance.
It's a similar story styling-wise, with standard 18-inch alloy wheels, enlarged exhaust tips, gloss black mirror caps, and a big ole Turbo badge on the hatch to let Chevy Trax drivers know what they're messing with. Within is an 8.8-inch infotainment screen linked to a 12-speaker Bose audio system, though Mazda makes no mention of the heated steering wheel to be found in the turbo Mazda3.
On the tech front, the CX-30 adopts a near-identical array of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) to ease commutes and reduce the chance of a crash. It'll automatically brake for unsighted obstacles while reversing, manipulate its own steering to hold lane position under 40 mph with radar cruise active, and optionally, display a 360-degree view of its surroundings.
Mazda's escargot-charged CX-30 will hit dealers by the end of 2020, and though pricing hasn't been confirmed, it's not hard to estimate where it'll land. There's a $9,400 gulf between the base 2021 Mazda3 sedan and the Turbo model, so applied to the 2020 CX-30's base price, that premium takes the 2021 CX-30 2.5 Turbo to an estimated $31,300.
Considering the CX-30 manages a fair impression of a hot hatchback with a smaller engine, a torquey 250-horsepower powerplant may be all the CX-30 needs to complete the illusion.
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