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Both the Sportage and the CX-30 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available all-wheel drive, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, its “Good” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Sportage the rating of “Top Pick” for 2019, a rating granted to only 105 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The CX-30 has not been tested, yet.
The Sportage comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The CX-30’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 24,000 miles sooner.
Kia’s powertrain warranty covers the Sportage 5 years and 40,000 miles longer than Mazda covers the CX-30. 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-30 ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.
There are over 32 percent more Kia dealers than there are Mazda dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Sportage’s warranty.
To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Sportage has a standard 140-amp alternator (150-amp - Sportage SX Turbo AWD). The CX-30’s 130-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Sportage first among small suvs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The CX-30 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 Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 24 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 Kia vehicles are more reliable than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 33 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 21st.
The Sportage SX Turbo’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 51 more horsepower (237 vs. 186) and 74 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 186) than the CX-30’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder. The Sportage SX Turbo’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 54 more horsepower (240 vs. 186) and 74 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 186) than the CX-30’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder.
The Sportage has 3.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the CX-30 AWD’s standard fuel tank (16.4 vs. 12.7 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Sportage has 2.9 gallons more fuel capacity than the CX-30 FWD’s standard fuel tank (16.4 vs. 13.5 gallons).
For better stopping power the Sportage’s brake rotors are larger than those on the CX-30:
Sportage SX Turbo
Opt Rear Rotors
For better traction, the Sportage has larger standard tires than the CX-30 (225/60R17 vs. 215/65R16). The Sportage SX Turbo’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the CX-30 (245/45R19 vs. 215/65R16).
The Sportage LX’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 CX-30’s standard 65 series tires. The Sportage SX Turbo’s tires have a lower 45 series profile than the CX-30 Select/Preferred/Premium’s 55 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Sportage LX has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the CX-30. The Sportage SX Turbo’s 19-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the CX-30 Select/Preferred/Premium.
For superior ride and handling, the Kia Sportage 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-30 has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.
The Sportage has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The CX-30’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.
The Sportage has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Sportage flat and controlled during cornering. The CX-30’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.
For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Sportage is 1.8 inches wider in the front and 2.3 inches wider in the rear than the track on the CX-30.
The Sportage has 4.5 cubic feet more passenger volume than the CX-30 (98.6 vs. 94.1).
The Sportage has 1.2 inches more front headroom, 1.5 inches more front shoulder room, .8 inches more rear headroom, 1.9 inches more rear legroom and 1.5 inches more rear shoulder room than the CX-30.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Sportage’s rear seats recline. The CX-30’s rear seats don’t recline.
The Sportage has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the CX-30 (30.7 vs. 20.2 cubic feet).
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Sportage’s liftgate can be opened just by waiting momentarily behind the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The CX-30 doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the Sportage to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The CX-30 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
The Sportage’s optional outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. The CX-30 doesn’t offer heated side mirrors.
Optional air-conditioned seats in the Sportage (except S/LX) keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The CX-30 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Sportage’s optional (except S/LX) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The CX-30 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
Consumer Reports® recommends the Kia Sportage, based on reliability, safety and performance.
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