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2022 Honda HR-V vs Mazda CX-30

2022 Honda HR-V vs Mazda CX-30

2022 HR-V vs CX-30 - How Do They Stack Up? Which is Better?

The Honda HR-V and CX-30 are two compact SUVs that look modern and stylish. They have a similar style with a rounded tail and a height that's not too high, so they can certainly fit the description of a crossover. They offer similar features, including modern technology, good efficiency, and versatility, but there are some major ways in which they are distinct from each other.

The Powertrain

All four trims of the Honda HR-V run on 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engines. One of these engines can deliver 141 horsepower and 127 pound-feet of torque. This isn't anything to get too excited about, but it is nice to know that all-wheel drive is available on every trim. Having all-wheel drive can enhance traction pretty significantly when the roads are slippery, and it can help with overall handling, too.

Honda has given the HR-V a continuously variable transmission. It has Sport mode in case someone wants to turn up the excitement level a notch. There's also an Eco Assist system that can optimize efficiency. Three trims have paddle shifters to provide some more control for the driver.

With the Mazda CX-30, there are two options. The first is a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine. Because it's a little bigger than the HR-V's engine, it can do more work. It generates 186 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque. This is a decent amount of power, but there are a few trims that can do even better.

The CX-30 trims with the "Turbo" designation in their names benefit from having 2.5-liter turbocharged engines. As a result, they have up to 250 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque. This is obviously going to make the Mazda feel more lively. Notably, all-wheel drive is now standard with this model. Not only does all-wheel drive help in snowy, icy, and muddy conditions, but it also helps when accelerating and cornering.

With either engine, the CX-30 has a six-speed electronically controlled sport automatic transmission. A few trims have paddle shifters to provide the opportunity for the driver to exercise more control.

Though they're not hybrids, these vehicles do pretty well in terms of fuel efficiency. A HR-V with front-wheel drive can earn up to 28/34 (city/highway) miles per gallon. If an HR-V has all-wheel drive, its estimated fuel economy drops a bit to 27/31 miles per gallon. The CX-30, which is only offered with all-wheel drive, can achieve up to an estimated 24/31 miles per gallon. The turbo versions don't do quite as well, but they aren't far behind. They have an estimated fuel economy of 22/30 miles per gallon.


Since they have a compact size, these vehicles feel agile and are easy to maneuver, even in smaller parking lots and crowded city streets. On the other hand, they're not particularly suited for rugged conditions. If necessary, they may be able to tow relatively light loads, but they certainly can't handle anything that's too large.

The HR-V may even feel a bit sluggish when weighted down with a full cabin. Most drivers don't need to win any races, though, so the HR-V will most likely be sufficient since it can get people safely from one point to another. Hill start assist can be useful when stopped on an incline, as it can hold pressure on the brakes while the driver takes a foot off the gas pedal and moves it to the accelerator. The Honda's cabin can seem fairly quiet, thanks to an available active noise cancellation program.

The CX-30 has more power than the HR-V, so it will offer a more thrilling experience. This is especially true if one of the turbo models is selected. The standard Skyactiv-Vehicle Dynamics with G-Vectoring Control Plus can ensure that performance is always optimized.

When it comes to parking either vehicle, there shouldn't be a problem. The rearview camera can help people keep an eye on how they're doing when they're backing up. The top trim of the Mazda CX-30 even has a 360-degree monitor that can provide more assistance. The fact that the HR-V measures only 170.4 inches and the CX-30 measures 173 inches means that they should be able to fit in compact spots.

Going over uneven terrain could be more difficult in the HR-V. It can either have a ground clearance of 7.3 or 6.7 inches, depending on whether it has front-wheel or all-wheel drive. The CX-30, in comparison, sits eight inches off the ground, which is more comparable with the clearance of larger SUVs.

It can be important to know whether a particular vehicle can fit all of someone's anticipated cargo as well as accommodate a full cabin of passengers. The HR-V can fit five passengers quite comfortably. It has 39.3 inches of leg room in its rear seat, which is very generous considering that the Honda is not a full-size vehicle. Leg room in the CX-30 is 36.3 inches, and for some taller passengers, that difference of three inches may feel significant.

Behind the rear seats of the CX-30, there's a cargo area that has a volume of 20.2 cubic feet. This can be more than doubled, to 45.2 cubic feet, by lowering the rear seats down.

The HR-V has slightly more room in the back, having about 24 cubic feet of cargo space. Lowering the rear seats can expand cargo volume to about 58 cubic feet. This is considerably more cargo capacity than what the CX-30 has.

Plus, the HR-V has some more versatility to its seating configuration. When cargo needs to be transported as opposed to passengers, there are two options for creating more space in the cabin. The first is to lower the rear seatback, and the second is to raise the seat cushion up. It can be unlocked from its position and folded up so that it's oriented in a vertical manner, right up against the seatback. This creates a taller area that can hold an item that may need to sit upright instead of being laid down on its side.

As people travel around in the HR-V or CX-30, they'll likely want to keep themselves entertained, and it can be so convenient to have an easy way to make calls and send and receive text messages. The CX-30 comes standard with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, an eight-inch display, and Bluetooth. It also comes with voice recognition, Pandora internet radio integration, HD Radio, and an eight-speaker sound system.

Unfortunately, the base trim of the HR-V does not have all of these components. It does have a five-inch color LCD screen and Bluetooth, but it only has four speakers and does not have Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. All of the other trims do have smartphone compatibility, and they can either have four or six speakers. Along with this, they have seven-inch touchscreens and Pandora compatibility. Only the top two trims, which make up the top half of the lineup, have SirusXM and HD Radio.

The base trim of the HR-V has one USB port, and all the others have an additional USB port. In contrast, the CX-30 starts out with two USB ports. Wireless charging isn't available with either model.

With the CX-30, Mazda offers customers a few extra high-tech options. Towards the top of the lineup, the trims can have Bose sound systems with 12 speakers and advanced technology that enhances the sound quality. They can also have built-in navigation and SiriusXM Traffic and Travel Link. People can stay updated about any traffic updates and get sports scores, check the weather, and look up fuel prices at nearby gas stations.

Technology has been incorporated into other areas of the cabin, too. The CX-30 has a seven-inch display behind its steering wheel, and this would show the driver important data. This vehicle can also have an Active Driving Display that broadcasts some key information onto the windshield, right in the line of sight of the driver. It can show things like the speed limit, the current speed, and any safety warnings. Further, the CX-30 can have smart keyless entry, a memory system for the available power-adjustable driver's seat, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

The Honda HR-V does not have all of these elements, so it feels a bit more basic. It's actually limited to having a manually adjustable driver's seat. Half of its trims do have smart keyless entry, and the most sophisticated HR-V trim has an automatic-dimming rearview mirror. Unlike the CX-30, which can have dual-zone climate control, the HR-V has only one zone for its climate control system.


Safety is always going to be something to consider when purchasing a new vehicle, and with all the innovations that have happened, modern vehicles can do a lot in terms of protecting passengers. The Mazda CX-30, for example, comes standard with driver-assist technologies. It can sense when it's about to hit an objet in front of it, and it can detect when it's drifting out of a lane. It can even sense when the driver isn't focused on the roads. In any of these situations, it would send out an alert to refocus the driver's attention, and it has the ability to hit the brakes or adjust steering if necessary.

Automatic high beams are also a standard part of the Mazda's safety package. These can turn on and off, depending on whether any other headlights or street lights are detected. Every trim except for the first one in the CX-30 lineup has blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert as well. Higher trims can have adaptive front lights, and the top-level trim has front and rear parking sensors and reverse automatic braking. Adaptive front lights can adjust their angle when the vehicle is changing direction, and as a result, they do a better job of lighting up curvy roads or helping people see in front of them when making turns.

On top of all of this, the CX-30 features adaptive cruise control. This program allows the driver to set a certain speed. If the leading vehicle slows down, then the CX-30 would slow down, too, to maintain proper distancing. Adaptive cruise control can even bring the vehicle to a stop in heavy traffic.

Many of these safety systems are found in the HR-V, but not across the entire lineup. Only two out of the four trims have driver-assist technologies, to include adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beams. All trims have anti-lock brakes and vehicle stability control, but it's perhaps a misstep on Honda's part to have not incorporated the more advanced systems into every HR-V trim.

One thing that the HR-V can have that the CX-30 doesn't have is Honda LaneWatch. It's similar to blind spot monitoring, except it can actually show a live video feed of the vehicle in the Honda's blind spot. Note that a camera has only been placed on the right-hand side of the SUV.

Which Has the Best Value?

The HR-V is the cheaper vehicle, having a starting price of $21,870. Its top trim, the EX-L, costs about $26,700.

In comparison, the CX-30 has a starting price of $22,500. This is not that much higher than what the HR-V costs, and remember that every one of these Mazda models has all-wheel-drive capability. If one were to add that type of drivetrain to the HR-V, it would cost a few thousand dollars. Since the CX-30 also has smartphone compatibility and driver-assist systems, it seems to offer the better value.

At the other end of the Mazda lineup, there's the 2.5 Turbo Premium Plus. It costs $34,700, which is much more than the EX-L trim of the HR-V. With all of its upgrades, it definitely feels like it's in a different class than the Honda is. Its turbo engine gives it much more capability, and it has some high-end components like a frameless auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink technology, leather seats, a heated steering wheel, a power liftgate, and navigation. The EX-L just isn't comparable, but being cheaper by $8,000 will work in its favor.

Which is Better?

The HR-V may be the more budget-friendly vehicle, but it almost doesn't feel like it. The CX-30 is difficult to top because of its sleek style, modern amenities, and impressive technology. Its regular engine is a little more powerful than that of the HR-V, and the available turbocharged engine puts the CX-30 even further ahead.

Where the HR-V wins is in the categories of interior space and efficiency. Anyone who may be concerned about gas consumption may be more attracted to the HR-V. In addition, the HR-V has a good amount of cargo space and a generously sized second row. This may make it the more practical choice for many potential buyers.

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