It seems to be a common trend for us. Every time we get to test drive a Mazda, we come away impressed with how they continually get such a good looking and fun to drive car at such a sweet price point.
This has happened again with our recent week long test drive of the 2016 Mazda CX-3 Grand Touring AWD. The CX-3 is a subcompact crossover. If you don’t know what a crossover is, pretend a small SUV and a hatchback had a baby – now you have a subcompact crossover!
This is a model that Mazda has had some great success with, make a sharp looking car, make it sporty and fun to drive and you have a winner. The CX-3 feels like it is hugging the road and all the turns that come with it.
Once inside the CX-3, you feel like you are inside a very well designed and laid out car. The interior wraps around you nicely and has a nice high end feel. This is for the driver and even the passenger, the backseat is a little tight. This is a given, the backseat of any subcompact crossover is going to feel smallish though.
Possibly my favorite feature on this sporty little masterpiece was the Active Pop Up Display. It is a clear screen that pops up above the steering wheel, which shoots a light to show your speed and other necessary items so you can keep your eyes up and on the road, it is very cool. It also folds back down when the car is off – such a great idea to provide a HUD feel, at a lower cost.
Driving & Performance
The CX-3 is not designed to be a speedster, like I mentioned, you feel like you are going a lot quicker than you actually are. The SKYACTIV-G engine is designed to get you the most bang for your buck, just like you get with this car. I averaged just over 31 miles per gallon combined highway and city driving which is pretty impressive for an AWD vehicle.
The CX-3 gets you bang for your buck, great gas mileage, looks and more, the one area it falls a bit short on is power. It is a slower vehicle and on the bottom tier for acceleration, but what I find amazing is that Mazda manages to make you feel as though you are going much faster than you actually are.
Lastly, Mazda has perfected their i-Active-AWD. With it, your car can predict the future! Always on alert and can change power to wheels in an instant, which is great for crazy Michigan weather
Mazda has done it again, the CX-3 is fun, sporty and affordable. It has a couple of shortcomings, but you are going to have that with an entry level vehicle from any maker. This is absolutely a car you should go and check out if you are looking for a new car with a little bit of swagger, but still on a budget. You will enjoy your time with it. When will you go check out the new Mazda CX-3 Grand Touring AWD?
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