2020 Hyundai Tucson vs. 2019 Mazda CX-3

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The Tucson Limited/Ultimate has a standard Surround View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The CX-3 only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

The Tucson’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The CX-3 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Compared to metal, the Tucson’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Mazda CX-3 has a metal gas tank.

Both the Tucson and the CX-3 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, crash mitigating brakes, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH, results indicate that the Hyundai Tucson is safer than the Mazda CX-3:

Tucson

CX-3

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

94

183

Chest Movement

.8 inches

.8 inches

Abdominal Force

107 G’s

199 G’s

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

55 G’s

85 G’s

Hip Force

482 lbs.

487 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The Tucson comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The CX-3’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.

Hyundai’s powertrain warranty covers the Tucson 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Mazda covers the CX-3. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the CX-3 ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

The Tucson’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the CX-3’s (7 vs. 5 years).

There are over 44 percent more Hyundai dealers than there are Mazda dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Tucson’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the Tucson second among small suvs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The CX-3 isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are better in initial quality than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai third in initial quality, above the industry average. With 23 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 12th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are more reliable than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 35 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 21st.

Engine

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The Tucson SE/Value’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 16 more horsepower (164 vs. 148) and 5 lbs.-ft. more torque (151 vs. 146) than the CX-3’s 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 33 more horsepower (181 vs. 148) and 29 lbs.-ft. more torque (175 vs. 146) than the CX-3’s 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

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The Tucson has 4.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the CX-3 AWD’s standard fuel tank (16.4 vs. 11.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Tucson has 3.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the CX-3 FWD’s standard fuel tank (16.4 vs. 12.7 gallons).

Environmental Friendliness

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certifies the Hyundai Tucson as a “Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle” (PZEV). The Mazda CX-3 is only certified to “Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle” (ULEV) standards.

Transmission

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The Tucson offers an available sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The CX-3 doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the Tucson’s brake rotors are larger than those on the CX-3:

Tucson

CX-3

CX-3 AWD

Front Rotors

12 inches

11 inches

11.6 inches

Rear Rotors

11.9 inches

11.1 inches

11.1 inches

The Tucson stops shorter than the CX-3:

Tucson

CX-3

60 to 0 MPH

128 feet

135 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

138 feet

148 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Tucson has larger standard tires than the CX-3 (225/60R17 vs. 215/60R16). The Tucson Sport’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the CX-3 (245/45R19 vs. 215/60R16).

The Tucson Sport’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the CX-3 Grand Touring/Touring’s 50 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Tucson SE/Value has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the CX-3 Sport. The Tucson Sport’s 19-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the CX-3 Grand Touring/Touring.

Suspension and Handling

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For superior ride and handling, the Hyundai Tucson has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Mazda CX-3 has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The Tucson has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The CX-3’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Tucson has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Tucson flat and controlled during cornering. The CX-3’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Tucson’s wheelbase is 3.9 inches longer than on the CX-3 (105.1 inches vs. 101.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Tucson is 3.2 inches wider in the front and 3.8 inches wider in the rear than the track on the CX-3.

The Tucson Limited AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the CX-3 Grand Touring AWD (27.1 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 27.6 seconds @ .66 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the Tucson has a greater minimum ground clearance than the CX-3 (6.4 vs. 6.1 inches), allowing the Tucson to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Tucson’s minimum ground clearance is .2 inch higher than on the CX-3 Touring/Grand Touring (6.4 vs. 6.2 inches).

Passenger Space

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The Tucson has 14.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the CX-3 (102.2 vs. 87.6).

The Tucson has 1.2 inches more front headroom, 3.3 inches more front hip room, 3.6 inches more front shoulder room, 2 inches more rear headroom, 3.2 inches more rear legroom, 5.5 inches more rear hip room and 4.7 inches more rear shoulder room than the CX-3.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Tucson’s rear seats recline. The CX-3’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

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The Tucson has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the CX-3 with its rear seat up (31 vs. 12.4 cubic feet). The Tucson has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the CX-3 with its rear seat folded (61.9 vs. 44.5 cubic feet).

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Tucson easier. The Tucson’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 29.3 inches, while the CX-3’s liftover is 30.6 inches.

The Tucson’s cargo area is larger than the CX-3’s in every dimension:

Tucson

CX-3

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

34.3”/69.5”

27.8”/58”

Max Width

53”

n/a

Min Width

40.7”

39.4”

Height

35.2”

26.6”

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Tucson Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s power liftgate can be opened just by waiting momentarily behind the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Tucson’s power liftgate can also be opened or closed by pressing a button. The CX-3 doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening liftgate.

Towing

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The Tucson has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The CX-3 has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The Tucson has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The CX-3 doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

Ergonomics

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The power windows standard on both the Tucson and the CX-3 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Tucson is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The CX-3 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Tucson’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The CX-3’s power window (except driver window) and power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The Tucson has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The CX-3 only offers an automatic headlight on/off feature as an extra cost option.

Both the Tucson and the CX-3 offer available heated front seats. The Tucson Ultimate also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the CX-3.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Tucson Ultimate keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The CX-3 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

The Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The CX-3 doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the Tucson and the CX-3 offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The CX-3 doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Tucson owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Tucson will cost $170 less than the CX-3 over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Tucson is less expensive to operate than the CX-3 because typical repairs cost less on the Tucson than the CX-3, including $23 less for front brake pads, $16 less for a starter, $55 less for fuel injection, $37 less for front struts, $113 less for a timing belt/chain and $91 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

Consumer Reports performed a comparison test in its January 2016 issue and they ranked the Hyundai Tucson Value AWD first. They ranked the Mazda CX-3 Touring AWD third.

The Hyundai Tucson outsold the Mazda CX-3 by over eight to one during 2018.

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

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