The Major Differences Between the Mazda CX 3 and CX 5. Choosing the right car!

When looking at two of the most popular Mazda SUVs, it’s hard to ignore the Mazda CX 3 and CX 5 for their quality, but there are some distinct differences. Mazda didn’t want to make the same car twice, so Mazda speaks to two different demographics with the CX 3 and CX 5. Let’s dig a little deeper.

Design, Style and Colours

Here are some of the main characteristic differences between the Mazda CX 3 and CX 5.

The biggest thing to note is the size difference between the CX 3 and CX 5. The CX 5 is larger compared to the smaller, more compact CX 3. This can be perfect for people who haven’t got much room to spare and really need a new daily driver. Meanwhile the CX 5 boasts more legroom, a huge amount of boot space, and is just overall a larger SUV, perfect for having more passengers and storage for large shopping or camping trips. 

Both vehicles have some distinct designs that differentiate their style while remaining true to the Mazda standard. The CX 3 is the best of both worlds, with a fun exterior and sophisticated interior. Some of the main key points are the well placed sleek curve lines and the eight different colour choices. 

In comparison, the Mazda CX 5 is strong on the outside and classy on the inside. Having the same smooth design that Mazda is known for, but with fewer lines and a greater ground clearance. On top of this is the fact that the CX 5 offers nine different colour options, one more than the CX 3.

The big difference you are going to find between these is the general size, the different front front grilles, the ground clearance, and of course the exterior designs. 


How do the interiors compare between the two models? 

The CX 5 will leave you with all the leg room you want in both the front and back seats. In addition, if you purchase the higher model you can have heated front and back seats with dual-zone control to give heightened comfort. 

The CX 3 still makes the most of its compact size by expertly fitting cup holders, centre console, USB ports and rear seat armrest. The space isn’t going to match, especially in the back. But if you weren’t planning to use them often, the front space is completely workable.

When it comes to interior style, both models offer something different. The CX 3 is going for a sophisticated look and hits it dead on. Affordable yet classy, the CX 3 is the perfect balance. 

If you want a bit more fun, the CX 5 is a great option. It’s still a simple, smart, sharp design like the CX 3, but you also get some extra features, such as a frameless rearview mirror, larger display screen and wood ingrained panels at the higher models.


Mazda keeps on top of its features, and when it comes to these two cars, this concept holds strong. 

The Mazda CX 3 has a surprising amount of extra features associated with it, especially when you consider the price point and what you are getting for the baseline model. With additions like rear park sensor, Bluetooth screen, keyless start, Smart City Brake Support and more, it will leave any driver happy. Moving up the model line, you get additions like climate control, satellite navigation, Traffic Sign Recognition, sunroof and more. The base model also has some impactful safety features, making it great for a daily driver.

Comparing these features to what the CX 5 has to offer, there are a few key differences. An 8-inch monitor (1 inch more than the CX 3), dual climate control compared to single, heating in front and back seats, heated steering wheel, cooled front seats, and much more. On top of this, the CX 5 has a huge amount of safety features included.

You have to keep in perspective the price difference between the two options. Yes, the Mazda CX 5 features are amazing and can’t be ignored, but here are the base costs of both vehicles: the Mazda CX 3 is $23,990 while the Mazda CX 5 is $30,980 which goes up to $51,330. Your decision is based on your personal needs and budget. 

 Engine And Fuel Consumption

The CX 3 saw some updates to its design by adding the Mazda Skyactiv-D diesel engine to the roster while still supporting their petrol infused variant. The new diesel engine saw a performance boost pushing up to 85kW and 270Nm, while the petrol option reached 110kW and 195Nm of torque. 

Taking a look at the big and powerful CX 5 you will definitely see some stronger output. CX 5’s turbo-petrol engine can reach 170kW and 420Nm while the petrol infused variant 140kW and 252Nm of torque. The CX 5 is stronger, but that isn’t a surprise to anyone considering it needs to power a larger vehicle. The big surprise here is that the CX 3 has a diesel option while the CX 5 has a turbo.

In terms of fuel consumption you’re definitely going to see the advantage go towards the small CX 3. The CX 3 diesel consumes 4.7L/100km and the petrol option 6.7/100km. On the other hand the CX 5 with its turbo engine takes 9.8L/100km and the petrol engine takes 7.4L/100km. The CX 3 is a much more fuel-efficient vehicle in this comparison but the strength of the CX 5 engines is well suited for the vehicle it has to drive.

A Test Drive Will Give You A Definitive Answer

As you might have guessed, the CX 5 is really well suited for larger families or people who often find themselves going on trips and need the extra strength and carry room. The CX 3 is perfect for couples or people planning to use it as a daily driver to get from point A to point B.

You’ve had a chance to compare both vehicles and now might have an idea of which one you might be interested in. Booking a test drive will do you good as you will get a chance to really feel the vehicle that suits you.