2019 Mazda CX-3 vs. 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The CX-3 has standard Whiplash-Reducing Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash-Reducing Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Eclipse Cross doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Both the CX-3 and the Eclipse Cross have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and lane departure warning systems.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the CX-3 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 85 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Eclipse Cross has not been fully tested, yet.

Warranty

The CX-3’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Eclipse Cross’ (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

There are over 62 percent more Mazda dealers than there are Mitsubishi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the CX-3’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mazda vehicles are better in initial quality than Mitsubishi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mazda 22nd in initial quality. With 11 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mitsubishi is ranked 26th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mazda vehicles are more reliable than Mitsubishi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mazda 14th in reliability. With 29 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mitsubishi is ranked 26th.

Engine

As tested in Car and Driver the Mazda CX-3 is faster than the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross:

 

CX-3

Eclipse Cross

Zero to 60 MPH

8.1 sec

8.6 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

23.8 sec

30.2 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

8.3 sec

9.2 sec

Quarter Mile

16.3 sec

16.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

86 MPH

83 MPH

Top Speed

120 MPH

118 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the CX-3 gets better fuel mileage than the Eclipse Cross:

 

 

 

MPG

CX-3

 

FWD

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

29 city/34 hwy

 

AWD

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

27 city/32 hwy

Eclipse Cross

 

FWD

1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

26 city/29 hwy

 

AWD

ES 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

25 city/28 hwy

 

 

1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

25 city/26 hwy

Tires and Wheels

The CX-3 Sport’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Eclipse Cross ES’ standard 70 series tires. The CX-3 Grand Touring/Touring’s tires have a lower 50 series profile than the Eclipse Cross LE/SE/SEL’s 55 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

The CX-3 has engine speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Eclipse Cross doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The CX-3 Touring AWD handles at .81 G’s, while the Eclipse Cross SE AWD pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

The Mazda CX-3 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 500 to 550 pounds less than the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross.

The CX-3 is 5.1 inches shorter than the Eclipse Cross, making the CX-3 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Ergonomics

The CX-3 offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Eclipse Cross doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

When two different drivers share the CX-3 Grand Touring, the optional memory seats make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Eclipse Cross doesn’t offer memory seats.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the CX-3 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Eclipse Cross only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the CX-3 Grand Touring has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Eclipse Cross doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The CX-3 Grand Touring’s standard GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The Eclipse Cross’ available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

Recommendations

The Car Book by Jack Gillis recommends the Mazda CX-3, based on economy, maintenance, safety and complaint levels.

The Mazda CX-3 outsold the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross by over three to one during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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