2021 BMW X1 vs. 2020 Mazda CX-30

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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Both the X1 and the CX-30 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee 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, available all-wheel drive and driver alert monitors.

Warranty

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The X1 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-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 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The X1’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the CX-30’s (12 vs. 5 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X1 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Mazda doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the CX-30.

Reliability

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To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the X1 has a standard 150-amp alternator. The CX-30’s 130-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the X1’s reliability 12 points higher than the CX-30.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2020 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 18th in initial quality. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 22nd.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 7th in reliability, above the industry average. With 37 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 21st.

Engine

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The X1’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 42 more horsepower (228 vs. 186) and 72 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 186) than the CX-30’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder.

As tested in Car and Driver the BMW X1 is faster than the Mazda CX-30:

X1

CX-30

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

7.5 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

17.1 sec

20.7 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

7.3 sec

7.9 sec

Quarter Mile

14.9 sec

15.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

94 MPH

89 MPH

Top Speed

129 MPH

126 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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Regenerative brakes improve the X1’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The CX-30 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the X1’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The CX-30 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The X1 has 3.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the CX-30 AWD’s standard fuel tank (16.1 vs. 12.7 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The X1 has 2.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the CX-30 FWD’s standard fuel tank (16.1 vs. 13.5 gallons).

Transmission

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An eight-speed automatic is standard on the BMW X1, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the CX-30.

The X1’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The CX-30 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the X1’s brake rotors are larger than those on the CX-30:

X1

CX-30

Front Rotors

13 inches

11.6 inches

Rear Rotors

11.8 inches

10.4 inches

The X1’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the CX-30 are solid, not vented.

The X1 stops shorter than the CX-30:

X1

CX-30

70 to 0 MPH

170 feet

177 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

142 feet

147 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the X1 has larger tires than the CX-30 (225/50R18 vs. 215/65R16).

The X1’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the CX-30’s standard 65 series tires. The X1’s optional 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 X1 has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the CX-30. The X1’s optional 19-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the CX-30 Select/Preferred/Premium.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X1 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The CX-30 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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For superior ride and handling, the BMW X1 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 X1 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 X1 has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the X1 flat and controlled during cornering. The CX-30’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The X1 xDrive28i handles at .87 G’s, while the CX-30 Premium AWD pulls only .84 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The X1 xDrive28i executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the CX-30 Premium AWD (26.8 seconds @ .65 average G’s vs. 27.4 seconds @ .62 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the X1 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the CX-30 (7.2 vs. 6.9 inches), allowing the X1 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Passenger Space

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The X1 has 7.1 cubic feet more passenger volume than the CX-30 (101.2 vs. 94.1).

The X1 has 3.8 inches more front headroom, 1.1 inches more rear headroom, .7 inches more rear legroom and 1.6 inches more rear shoulder room than the CX-30.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the X1’s available rear seats recline. The CX-30’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

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The X1 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the CX-30 with its rear seat up (27.1 vs. 20.2 cubic feet). The X1 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the CX-30 with its rear seat folded (58.7 vs. 45.2 cubic feet).

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the X1. The CX-30 doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the X1’s available liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under 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.

Servicing Ease

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The X1 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The CX-30 uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

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The power windows standard on both the X1 and the CX-30 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the X1 is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The CX-30 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

If the windows are left open on the X1 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the CX-30 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The X1’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. The CX-30 doesn’t offer heated side mirrors.

The X1’s optional rear and side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The CX-30 offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

On extremely cold winter days, the X1’s optional 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.

The X1 has a 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. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the CX-30 Select/Preferred/Premium.

The X1’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The CX-30 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/10/27

Consumer Reports® recommends the BMW X1, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Mazda CX-30 isn't recommended.

The X1 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 3 of the last 4 years. The CX-30 has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.

The BMW X1 outsold the Mazda CX-30 by almost 20 to one during 2019.

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

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