Going by the Japanese company’s current naming convention, we’d forgive you if you thought a CX-30 ought to be the size of a jet. Instead, the compact crossover slots in between the existing CX-3 and CX-5 at 173 inches long.
The rest of the CX-30 is decidedly more conventional. It sits on a version of the pretty new 3’s platform. It also adopts the marque’s latest evolution of the Kodo design language, with flowing flanks highlighting the look. The large amount of black plastic cladding hints at some level of off-roading prowess — like the type we recently experienced in the CX-3 — but the sheer volume does detract from the sharp lines. The sharply-raked rear window does give it a more sporty stance than big brother CX-5, though that eats into storage space.
With the 3’s bones underneath, the CX-30 mirrors its sibling in the engine department too. For Europe, that means one 1.8-liter diesel, and two 2.0-liter gasoline engine, one of which is Mazda’s compression-ignition SkyActiv-X unit. Mazda has yet to confirm powertrains outside the Old World. Power will flow through the front wheels as standard, with all-wheel drive available as an option, complete with torque-vectoring system.
The interior is an evolution of the 3’s basic architecture. It’s a tidy, minimalist look, with an 8.8-inch multi-function display screen in the center. The CX-30 also includes the latest suite of Mazda safety features (under the i-Activsense banner), including lane departure warnings, emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and adaptive cruise control.
The CX-30 will launch in Europe this summer before spreading to other regions.