Mazda’s small crossover, the CX-3, is due for an update this coming 2020. And, it’s going to be a big change. Literally.
As reported by Go Auto, an Australian automotive website, the CX-3 will move away from the Mazda2 chassis, and on to the bigger Mazda3 platform, bringing in improvements in size, space, utility, and, giving it more power. When this happens, the change in size will push the 2020 Mazda CX-3 into the territory of the likes of the Hyundai Kona and Toyota C-HR.
The new-generation Mazda CX-3 will be based on the SkyActiv II architecture that can also be found in the 2019 Mazda3, creating a stronger body structure and stiffer chassis. A re-engineered rear suspension will also lead to more refinements in noise and vibration reduction in the cabin.
Also to be expected in these upcoming Mazda products is the SkyActiv-X engine, a new take on compression-ignition petrol that is said to improve performance while reducing fuel consumption by 30%. The SkyActiv-X engine will be initially launched in the 2.0L variant of the Mazda 3 in supercharged form, and it looks like the CX-3 will enjoy this power and efficiency boost, as well.
Mazda says that it is sticking to traditional six-speed manual or torque-converter automatics rather than CVTs, and will run on lower grade 91 octane unleaded gasoline. The power bump is significant, jumping from 146 hp and 192 Nm of torque to 188 hp and 230 Nm of torque.
The 2020 Mazda CX-3 will also improve in areas such as seat support and comfort, dashboard ergonomics, interior noise reduction, and a larger cargo capacity. This is in response to the unfortunate slow sales of the Mazda CX-3 in the North American markets, where it is seen as too small on the outside, and too tight on the inside. The jump to the bigger platform is the way forward, aiming to increase sales and market share worldwide.
For comparison’s sake, in 2017, Mazda said it sold only 16,355 CX-3s in the United States, while Australia had 17,490 units on the road. Its main competitors in these markets, the Honda HR-V and Subaru XV, managed to bag 95,000 and 110,000 units respectively.
While we did enjoy the CX-3 when we tested it, it’s a good step to expand the platform, offering more power, space, and creature comforts. While the small SUV/crossover battleground is a bloody one, the CX-3 shows promise, and we’re looking forward to the year it comes here and gives its contenders a run for their money.