Comparison: 2021 Mazda CX-30 vs 2021 Subaru Crosstrek | Car Reviews

Rodolfo Schellin

Though these days motor vehicle segments are as nebulous as they’ve ever been, there are even now some vehicles that send out a apparent message as to their station in lifestyle, and which can be confidently classified even if their suppliers attempt to blur the traces a very little.

For our uses in this article, we speak of a car phase – a little one – that I like to phone “compacts on stilts” (CoS) due to the fact, for all intents and uses, which is what they are. They offer the identical powertrain to the compact hatchbacks with which they share a popular system, but they may perhaps have a very little additional room inside and they frequently have some specialized chassis bits and entire body cladding to assistance them better traverse hard terrain.

The phase includes many versions, but the two dominant players are the Subaru Crosstrek and the Mazda CX-30. They go away the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross and Jeep Compass/Renegade driving in conditions of profits the Crosstrek is in actuality the best-advertising Subaru in Canada, in advance even of the Impreza from which it’s derived. Meanwhile, the Mazda3 Sport that shares its system with the CX-30 even now outsells its newer sibling., 100{7e488363c11ee5ef50445c8c4fa770b6e6e4f99e57faea264a05ac52abb3ffe0} on the web, shop for your subsequent car, invest in on the web and get it shipped to you everywhere in Quebec!

As it occurs, both equally the CX-30 and Crosstrek obtained large upgrades for 2021, so a head-to-head comparison is a normal option!

2021 Subaru Crosstrek

2021 Subaru Crosstrek

The Crosstrek received the biggest modifications for 2021, notably with chassis and powertrain upgrades that make a planet of change. In fact, this is a motor vehicle that Subaru is heading to want to get correct as it is these types of a large seller for them. You guaranteed really do not want to alienate potential buyers and lovers from your bread-and-butter versions.

For 2021, pricing commences at $23,795 for the Benefit trim, but you’re heading to want to seem at the $29,995 Outdoor trim as that gets you two of the biggest add-ons for 2021: a 2.5L four-cylinder Boxer engine and the most current evolution of Subaru’s symmetrical all-wheel-generate program that now gives a two-stage X-Method off-road program.

Outdoor Digs
The Outdoor trim also gets the biggest stylistic change. All Crosstreks get plastic cladding around the wheels and rocker panels (the vital stylistic differentiator amongst them and the Impreza), but on the Outdoor, it’s additional well known around the wheels and front bumpers. Dim-gray 17-inch alloy wheels and distinctive Plasma Yellow Pearl paint are also offered with this trim. It is a pretty amazing-searching thing and whilst many will lament the decline of the burnt orange shade from previous yr, this new yellow is a superior substitution.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek, badging

2021 Subaru Crosstrek, badging

Electric power to match
Of program, it’s all effectively and superior if a car seems to be the element, but can it stroll the stroll? This is specially critical in the Crosstrek’s situation due to the fact even though it has been a large seller for the model, its powertrain has been critiqued for being down on ability. For 2021, which is changed as the Outdoor trim gets the 2.5L as opposed to the 2.0L that made use of to be your only option (and even now is at base).

The 2.5L tends to make 182 hp and 176 lb-ft of torque, generating it the 2nd-most potent motor vehicle in the phase, according to Subaru. The most potent? The CX-30…

Count on a a great deal additional responsive takeoff many thanks to the Outdoor’s CVT automatic (your only selection decrease-spec versions get a guide to start off). CVTs have a tendency not to provide the most associated generate, but Subaru has tuned theirs to offer digital “shift points” to at minimum make it feel like gears are being changed, and the acceleration is fantastic for this sort of motor vehicle. It is not neck-snapping like a WRX, but there is sufficient to make freeway driving flawlessly comfortable and distress-absolutely free.

Talking of distress-absolutely free, which is also how you will most likely feel when off-roading the Crosstrek. I had the option to set it by way of its paces on a gnarly program normally reserved for filth bikes and it created quick operate of it, the great AWD program and enhanced ride top letting a confident traverse of the many bumps and berms I was tackling.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek, three-quarters rear

2021 Subaru Crosstrek, a few-quarters rear

A large element of that self confidence arrives from the new two-manner X-Method AWD program. It adds a deep snow/mud manner to the terrain select program and also allows for a very little additional wheel slip so you can better clamber up particular surfaces. Improved even now is how the X-Mode2 also gives a hill-descent and -ascent program so when active, what you have effectively received is off-road cruise manage so all you have to concentrate on are your steering inputs.

There is also a handy supplementary Lcd exhibit atop the sprint that can display the road down below and in advance of you if you’re at these types of an angle that all you see by way of the windscreen is the blue sky above. It usually takes obtaining made use of to searching at the exhibit in its place of by way of the windshield, but at the time you do, it proves to be a terrific program.

Interior enhance
The Crosstrek Outdoor also gives interior upgrades like gray synthetic leather seating (a very little much too taxicab-esque for my liking) brightened by yellow piping and stitching to match the exterior. There is also a enormous central exhibit for the upgraded Starlink infotainment program with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and the gauges get some amazing yellow highlights as effectively.

It is a additional playful interior than right before and even though one doesn’t invest in a compact hatch for its rear seat room, always, it’s not terrible in the again of the Crosstrek and it cleans the Mazda’s clock in that department. If you want to transport lengthier objects, the seats split sixty/forty.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek, interior

2021 Subaru Crosstrek, interior

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo

What’s it a title? Nicely, in the Mazda’s situation, really a lot.

That nomenclature denotes the existence of Mazda’s 2.5L turbocharged four-cylinder for the very first time in the CX-30. This engine has proved itself in the larger sized CX-five and CX-9 crossovers and it does miracles for the generate knowledge of the scaled-down CX-30.

Fantastic turbo ability
The engine tends to make 227 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque if you use frequent gas, and 250 hp/320 lb-ft if you use ninety three octane. Individually, I applaud Mazda for being transparent about this. There is a great deal debate as to how a great deal change an octane ranking tends to make and Mazda just arrives out with it: “If you want additional ability, use greater octane fuel”. Carried out, dusted, and appreciated.

If you do use ninety three, nevertheless, whoa do you feel it. Electric power shipping on throttle idea-in offers with a bit of lag but just after that it’s off to the races, the CX-30 spiriting you down the road at a suitable tempo, a pretty superior facsimile of how the exact powertrain feels in the Mazda3 Sport hatchback.

It was a terrific transfer for Mazda to set this engine in the CX-30 due to the fact it adds a layer of real efficiency and a different dimension to a motor vehicle that sits in one of the additional hotly-disputed segments. There is even a bit of an exhaust take note, which had I not already sampled the Mazda3 with the exact powertrain, I would in no way had expected.

Electric power is fed by way of a six-speed automatic which may perhaps seem a very little old-school in comparison to the new(er)fangled CVTs found in the Subaru Crosstrek or the multi-ratio autos found in the likes of the Jeep Renegade, but Mazda has tuned the transmission and managed to get it properly in-sync with the engine.

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo, three-quarters rear

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo, a few-quarters rear

In fact, if you talk to Mazda – and I have – why they haven’t set a newer transmission inside, they’ll notify you that would damage driver involvement with the CX-30. Also many gears being shifted signifies much too many scenarios of ability interruption, and in any situation CVTs (which really do not actually shuffle any gears at all), have a tendency not to be all that associated in any case. So the six-speed auto it is. Furthermore, there is constantly the guide manner if you want, with paddle shifters for an even additional entire-on influence due to the fact who needs to tap a change lever again and forth to change gears with an auto box?

Holding the rubber on the road
Cars like the Crosstrek make a great deal of the offroad-skill their AWD program gives, but I’m not so guaranteed which is what CX-30 potential buyers would be all about. To me, the CX-30 is the additional urban car of the two, the additional associated generate and so it’s the traction and efficiency the AWD program gives which is the real get-dwelling for me.

There is no torque vectoring for every se, but the brakes can be routinely utilized to assistance rotate the CX-30 by way of turns and it – like each individual other AWD Mazda – has a neat very little trick up its sleeve in addition. That is G-Vectoring Regulate Furthermore, which actually takes advantage of throttle adjustments to get additional traction. Appears backwards, but what occurs is as before long as the program senses some steering enter, it subtly reduces the throttle response to pressure the body weight of the motor vehicle over the front axle. This smushes the tires additional firmly into the road surface for a larger sized get hold of patch and additional grip.

How aggressively the program intervenes (nevertheless it’s in no way so intense that you will genuinely observe it) depends on regardless of whether or not you have activated Sport manner, one of two you can decide on from, in addition to off-road which performs with the AWD program for better traction in adverse problems.

Of program, there is a caveat in this article in that the CX-30’s AWD program is a predictive one, indicating there is constantly some ability being despatched to all wheels so they can answer quickly when slip is detected. This will damage your fuel overall economy a very little, but the peace of brain it gives is worth the sacrifice.

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo, profile

2021 Mazda CX-30 GT Turbo, profile

Type and (some) material
Set plainly, the CX-30 is a terrific-searching motor vehicle. The extra plastic cladding around the wheels and on the rocker panels, darkish rims selection, amazing Soul Purple Crystal Metallic paint seen in this article are all pretty nice touches that carry on to give the CX-30 (and its Mazda3 siblings) some of the ideal styling in their segments.

In addition to the extra ride top, the CX-30 gets a taller roofline, ostensibly for additional cargo and passenger room inside, nevertheless it’s the cargo room that benefits most. The front seat is fantastic, but the again seat is much too cramped even for common-sized grownups to sit comfortably – specially in conditions of headroom, which is moment — so this is not a motor vehicle to look at if you’re preparing on shifting a few or 4 grownups around often.

Up front, room is additional generous head- and legroom are fantastic, the seating posture is tall sufficient for a superior check out outwards (nevertheless the base seat cushion is canted again additional than I’d like) and the controls tumble properly in your fingers. Furthermore, Mazda appreciates a thing or two about interior develop good quality and these days, their best trims – like the GT – are obtaining correctly luxurious interiors concluded in best-good quality materials.

The CX-30 is also one of the only Mazdas in Canada to receive the brand’s most current infotainment tech and even though it’s not all that flashy to seem at, it’s reliable and has both equally Apple CarPlay and Android Auto aid. No wi-fi charging, nevertheless, which is a pity.

See also: 2021 Mazda CX-30 Assessment: Roomier But Less Dynamic Than the 3

See also: 2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo First Push : Danger and Reward

2021 Mazda CX-30 / 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, front

2021 Mazda CX-30 / 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, front

Benefit Subaru Crosstrek

Two aspects different the Subaru from the Mazda – it has the additional sturdy AWD program with that terrific X-manner feature and it has additional room inside, specially in the again seat and trunk. The Crosstrek is marginally additional fuel-economical.

Benefit Mazda CX-30

The Mazda’s large activity engage in in this article is its large ability, simple and uncomplicated. There was a time not much too lengthy ago wherever three hundred+ lb-ft of torque was reserved for only the best of very hot hatches but Mazda has turned that on its ear with the CX-30 Turbo. A lot respect also both equally to the Mazda’s exterior styling and the good quality of its interior fit and end.


Though there is a very little additional room on the Crosstrek’s again seat – at minimum it feels like there is – these two are in the same way sized, offer equivalent ride heights and so they both equally offer a equivalent degree of simplicity-of-use around city and when parking. Not to point out they are both equally effectively lifted compact hatchbacks, as described.


Though these two are the best pet dogs in a little spinoff of a larger sized phase, the additional you generate them, the additional you understand they are actually really divergent in their attitudes. The Subaru is – legitimate to type – the outdoorsperson’s motor vehicle. It is better for off-road backcountry excursions excursions – it just is. The Mazda is additional the urbanite’s car, a great deal additional on-road than off.

It boils down to which lifestyle you want to espouse, as both one of these is a terrific option in the phase.

2021 Mazda CX-30 / 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, profile

2021 Mazda CX-30 / 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, profile

2021 Subaru Crosstrek

We like

Fantastic off-road chops
Outdoor trim a terrific sweet place in the lineup

We like much less

Somewhat affordable-feeling interior bits
CVT transmission a bit of a drag

2021 Mazda CX-30

We like

Highly effective turbo motor
Terrific seems to be
Nicely-crafted interior

We like much less

Cramped again seat
Introducing turbo ability brings value of entry above $35,000

2021 Subaru Crosstrek / 2021 Mazda CX-30, three-quarters rear

2021 Subaru Crosstrek / 2021 Mazda CX-30, a few-quarters rear

Technical specs

  2021 Mazda CX-30 2021 Subaru Crosstrek
  Transmission six-sp car CVT
  Rouage AWD AWD
  Fuel use (metropolis) ten.5L/100 km 8.8L/100 km
  Fuel use (high) 7.9L/100 km 7.0L/100 km
  Type Fuel Fuel
  Output one hundred fifty five hp 152 hp
  Torque 150 lb-ft one hundred forty five lb-ft
  Cylinders four four
  Displacement 2.0L 2.0L
  Type Fuel Fuel
  Output 186 hp 182 hp
  Torque 186 lb-ft 176 lb-ft
  Cylinders four four
  Displacement 2.5L 2.5L
  Type Fuel  
  Output 227 hp  
  Torque 320 lb-ft  
  Cylinders four  
  Displacement 2.L turbo  
  Cargo room 572 l – one,280 l 588 l – one,565 l
  Fuel tank fifty one l 63 l
  Towing capability n/a n/a
  Duration 4395 mm 4465 mm
  Width 2040 mm 1800 mm
  Height 1568 mm (1580 w/ antenna) 1615 mm
  Wheelbase 2652 mm 2665 mm
  Warranty five yr/endless km five yr/100,000 km
  Pricing (as examined) $36,081 $29,995


2021 Mazda CX-30 / 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, rear

2021 Mazda CX-30 / 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, rear

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