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Mazda shrinks CX-5 formula and its mini-me CX-3 AWD diesel proves a winner

16 Jul 2015

HINDSIGHT is a wonderful thing and right now it’s telling every SUV manufacturer to think small.

That’s because as we continue to congest our lives and our streets, going small is the only way to fit in.

Mazda’s CX-3, stablemate to Australia’s best-selling SUV, the CX-5 and based on the Mazda2, is a winner even without the benefit of hindsight.

Before its showroom debut in March, Mazda started to stress about fulfilling demand. Since its launch, over 4250 have been sold in Australia to put it in fifth place in the increasingly busy compact-SUV segment. In perspective, however, its year-to-date sales are half that of the small-SUV sector darling, Hyundai’s soon-to-be-replaced ix35.

What makes the CX-3 work? Part of it is the cuteness factor – it’s compact, rides high and has coupe-like proportions with a long nose and abrupt tail.

Then there’s the price range from $19,990 to $37,690, plus on-road costs, spread over 17 variants and encompassing manual and automatic, front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive, diesel and petrol.

And if it’s too compact, there’s always the CX-5. Mazda shoppers don’t even have to leave the showroom.

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Model release date: 1 March 2015 to 1 May 2017

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