We’re in the midst of a small-SUV explosion. Big-name automakers are slotting brand-new utility vehicles at the entry placement in their lineups, blending hatchback bodies along with tall-wagon rooflines and SUV-style all-wheel drive.
Two of the most interesting brand-new offerings are from automakers along with a track record for lean, sporty driving. Which one comes out a much better blend of all of those attributes–the brand-new Honda HR-V, or the brand-new Mazda CX-3?
Each is a smaller sized sibling to popular compact crossover SUVs, the HR-V to the CR-V and the CX-3 listed here the CX-5. They’re pretty various vehicles, though, each along with its own focus. The Honda is perfectly suited to city and suburban usage by couples or young families, along with optional all-wheel drive giving secure traction on muddy fields and unplowed roads. The Mazda is the sports auto of the pair, a a lot reduced automobile along with much less room inside for people and cargo however a far a lot more gratifying driving experience.
Both small SUVs have actually exaggerated styling that functions to disguise the “tall hatchback on wheels” form of most utility vehicles. The Honda is rakish however higher, using the brand’s latest styling language to offer the HR-V a lot more pizzazz–a thick chrome top bar in the grille, swept-spine front light units, and strongly etched edge accent lines. At the rear, though, it’s a shrunken carbon copy of the most up to date Acura MDX.
The Mazda shines on initial impression. From any kind of angle, the CX-3 is an attractive vehicle, offering an elegant, up-market feel along with a clear intention for sporty behavior on its sleeve. It’s just an impressive, cohesive exterior.
Inside, the HR-V’s cabin has actually much better finishes and components compared to the related Honda Match hatchback. The clean surfaces have actually a couple of foibles, enjoy the slim air vents cut in to the passenger-edge dash. enjoy all Mazda’s recent vehicles, the interior of the CX-3 is remarkably upscale in appearance. Plenty of hard plastics remain, however premium elements enjoy wrapped dashboard pieces, highlight piping on the seats, contrast stitching offer a pricier impression compared to its sticker may indicate.
Under the hood, the Honda has actually a 141-horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, paired to either a constantly variable transmission or a six-rate manual. All-wheel drive is an option, however only along with the CVT. The most fuel-efficient model of the HR-V (front-wheel drive and CVT) delivers a combined 31-mpg EPA rating, matching the Mazda and at or near the top of the burgeoning class of mini-SUVs.
The CX-3 also has actually only one engine–a 146-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine along with a six-rate automatic transmission–and a choice of standard front-wheel drive or optional all-wheel drive. Its fuel economy ratings are 31 mpg combined for the front-wheel-drive model, and 29 mpg combined for the AWD version. We’ve located Mazda’s SkyActiv engineering to pay off not only in greater ratings, however in real-globe figures that regularly beat the EPA numbers.
The HR-V has actually adequate power, however it’s not notably quick–even though it’s enough for safe highway merges. It handles well enough, even though the higher seating placements makes physique roll a lot more obvious. The CX-3 is a lot more lively, and clearly the driver’s auto of the pair, especially in front-drive form. Unlike the Honda, it’s not jacked up to give a truck’s ground clearance; it’s reduced to the road and its cornering is correspondingly flatter. Buyers of either automobile will certainly largely go with the automatic, however we saw the manual-gearbox Mazda a bit more.
One of the Honda’s biggest benefits over the Mazda is interior volume. The rear seat of the HR-V will certainly accommodate two adults along with generous head and leg room, too as two up front. To grab four adults in to the Mazda, you have actually to horse-trade–it’s comfortable up front however tight in the rear. Front-row seating in the CX-3 is spacious even for two large adult males, along with ample leg, head, and shoulder room, and the rear seat will certainly deal with medium-height adults–however it’s no HR-V.
The HR-V is by far the roomiest automobile in the segment, and it entails Honda’s unique “Magic Seat,” which folds and flips the second-row seat to offer multiple storage and seating configurations. For cargo, it’s the exact same story: the Honda accommodates 25 cubic feet behind the rear seat, 59 cubic feet along with the seat folded down. Comparable figures for the Mazda are 12 and 45 cubic feet, respectively.
Both vehicles are pleasingly quiet and refined inside on good road surfaces, and The 2 drivers and passengers will certainly locate most on-road travel to be peaceful in either one.
As brand-new entries, the Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 have actually The 2 been made along with all of the most up to date crash examinations in mind. The HR-V earns 5 stars from the NHTSA, however the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) rates it as merely “acceptable” in side-impact and small-overlap crash tests. The 2 supply a limited array of electronic active-safety units as options.
The HR-V and CX-3 are similarly priced, along with a base six-rate manual, front-wheel-drive model at about $20,000. all of HR-Vs consist of electricity windows, locks, and mirrors; a rearview camera; a tiling and telescoping steering wheel along with audio controls; and Bluetooth along with audio streaming. A fully optioned CX-3 can easily easily grab you to $30,000 however.
Both the 2016 Honda HR-V and the 2016 Mazda CX-3 are surprisingly comfortable and achieved small utility vehicles. The Honda wins decisively on interior room, while the Mazda has actually the edge in design and performance. We offer a lot more points to the CX-3 for its convincing handling and slightly much better utility, and in light of the Honda’s mixed safety results.
They truly appeal to two various buyers: the HR-V is for those that want a smaller sized automobile along with traditional SUV cargo capacity, while you can easily believe of the CX-3 as a a lot more usable Mazda 3 hatchback along with optional all-wheel drive.