Mazda CX-30 SUV - Interior & comfort
The Mazda CX-30's interior feels both elegant and sporty
The CX-30 is fitted with relatively firm suspension, which is noticeable around town where it occasionally sends bumps into the car. At speed it works better, smoothing the road more effectively and making the Mazda a competent motorway cruiser.
We were impressed by the interior of the Mazda3 and the CX-30 is no different, sitting above mainstream rivals like the Toyota CH-R in that regard. The level of quality its plush materials and neat design convey is impressive, while buttons and switches are easy to find and satisfying to use.
Mazda CX-30 dashboard
With a sleek, wing-like design, the CX-30's dashboard doesn't feel at all like the traditional, upright console found in traditional SUVs. There are no panels filled with buttons either; most of the car's settings are taken care of by navigating menus using a large control wheel on the central console. The result is attractive and unfussy, while a sporty and ergonomic steering wheel reminds you of the emphasis Mazda places on the driving experience.
Like BMW’s iDrive system, Mazda uses a rotary dial to control the central screen; the company thinks using this ‘Multimedia Commander’ is easier and safer than prodding at a touchscreen, and we’re inclined to agree. You’ll need to get used to the positioning of the buttons and how to navigate the menus, but it should feel intuitive before too long.
Trim levels for the CX-30 closely resemble those of the Mazda3. The entry-level trim is called SE-L and comes with a generous specification that includes an 8.8-inch TFT colour screen display with standard navigation and Bluetooth, plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Other standard features include LED headlamps, 16-inch alloy wheels, rear parking sensors, a head-up display with traffic sign recognition, air-conditioning and 60:40 split rear seats. Standard driver assistance tech also includes blind-spot monitoring and lane-keep assist.
Next up is the SE-L Lux trim, which adds front parking sensors, a reversing camera, heated front seats, keyless entry, radar-guided cruise control and dual zone climate control.
For a bit more visual impact the Sport Lux grade adds 18-inch alloy wheels and a black gloss grille, plus adaptive LED headlamps and LED running lights, privacy glass, a powered tailgate and paddle-shift control for auto versions. Choose the more powerful engine and you also get a sunroof and alloys in an eye-catching bright finish. GT Sport trim adds electric driver seat adjustment, leather upholstery and a 12-speaker sound system upgrade.
The range-topper is the GT Sport Tech trim level, which comes with 360-degree cameras, Front Cross Traffic Alert and driver monitoring.
Mazda typically doesn't offer anything like the number of options you'll find in an Audi or BMW brochure, instead encouraging owners to pick the most suitable trim level. Metallic and special paint colours cost extra, though, along with approved accessories such as bike racks and roof boxes.
The CX-30 is one of the few small SUVs to offer all-wheel drive. We wouldn’t recommend it for many buyers but, if you live in a rural area or are planning to tow regularly then this may be a reason to choose the Mazda over a Peugeot 2008 or a Volkswagen T-Roc.