Mazda CX-3 previewed in Malaysia – first pics, details

Mazda CX-3 16

We’re reporting to you live from the 2015 NST-MAI ASEAN Auto Show, where the Mazda CX-3 is currently on display. That’s right, the long-awaited B-segment crossover SUV finally makes landfall on Malaysian shores but keep in mind that this is merely a preview, not a launch.

Nonetheless, what you’re looking at here is indeed the car we will be getting, with tentative prices from RM130k to RM135k. According to sources within Bermaz, only one variant of the Mazda CX-3 will be offered and the crossover will officially make its launch debut on December 8.

We’ve also been told that only 2,000 units will be fully imported (CBU) from Japan initially and there are no plans to bring in any units from neighbouring Thailand, where the CX-3 is also produced, and more recently launched. However, there are considerations to locally-produce (CKD) the crossover, which could be good news for us.

Under the hood, a 2.0 litre SkyActiv-G petrol engine that provides 146 hp and 192 Nm of torque powers the CX-3. Mazda’s i-Stop engine idling stop system is also present here. The SkyActiv-G engine is paired to a SkyActiv-Drive six-speed automatic gearbox, sending drive to the front wheels.

On the outside, the Mazda CX-3 exhibits the brand’s Kodo styling language. In this specification, the crossover gains LED projector headlights with high beam control and LED DRLs, 18-inch five twin-spoke wheels (with 215/50 R18 sized tyres) in a gunmetal finish and silver painted exterior trim pieces.

Inside, the CX-3 packs an impressive kit list starting with black leather-fabric combo upholstery. Also fitted is the MZD Connect multimedia unit linked to a seven-inch touchscreen display. A Commander Control switch located on the centre console, as in the Mazda 2, controls the system.

Mazda CX-3 13

To allow a bit of the outdoors into the car, there is also a powered sunroof. Meanwhile, the driver benefits from a heads-up display (HUD), paddle shifters, as well as keyless entry and ignition.

Safety-wise, the CX-3 is well sorted here, packing six airbags (front, side and curtain) along with the standard array of Dynamic Stability Control (DSC), traction control and anti-lock brakes with EBD, brake assist and hill launch assist. We’ll unfortunately miss out on the i-ActivSense suite (Smart City Brake System, Rear View Monitoring, Lane Departure Warning etc.) of active safety features.

We’ve already had a go in the Mazda CX-3 in Australia and you can read our review here. For now, what do you think of the latest entry in the crossover SUV segment?

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Gerard Lye

Originating from the corporate world with a background in finance and economics, Gerard’s strong love for cars led him to take the plunge into the automotive media industry. It was only then did he realise that there are more things to a car than just horsepower count.



  • Aaron on Nov 12, 2015 at 10:33 am

    The absence of the i-ActivSense safety suite in the cx3 is very disappointing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 46 Thumb down 3
    • Where is Najib's Promise? on Nov 12, 2015 at 12:27 pm

      RM135k for a tiny tiny tiny B Segment? The car is so small, even a Myvi has more rear legroom than this car.

      The question we must be asking is, where is Najib’s promise to reduce car prices?

      Where is Najib’s promise? Najib promised 30 million people 2 years ago before the election that he would reduce car prices by 30 percent.

      He said the 30 million people need not worry because BN always kept their word and never mungkir janji. He said if people voted for BN, he was 100% sure to reduce car prices by 30 percent.

      Najib, in his speech told people that BN knew how much people suffered paying for their cars and he felt very sorry for the people, thus, he was sure to reduce car prices by 30%.

      It is a well knowfact, that we Malaysians are paying 3x the global prices of cars. And double whammy, not only we pay 3x the global prices of cars, our cars are stripped down so bad, it hardly lacks any safety features. Even our top D segment cars each have about 20 less safety features than the same car costing 3 times less overseas. For example, a 10 airbag Toyota Camry CBU in the US cost US$22,000. In Malaysia, this cost RM180k. And loads of safety spec taken out. For example Tyre Pressure Monitoring System and many others. Camry Hybrid in the US is US26,000. Come to Malaysia, should be tax free. CKD it using Malaysian parts should be even cheaper. But here sell RM175k

      Now, what happened Najib? Where is your promise?

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 92 Thumb down 15
      • Same L0rrrr on Nov 12, 2015 at 4:48 pm

        Answer to your question: Thanks to Proton.

        For a junk car maker to survive, generations of Malaysian suffer.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 34 Thumb down 10
        • movingcoffin on Nov 13, 2015 at 1:03 am

          So why Almera and Picanto much cheaper than Vios?

          Why City is much safer than Vios?

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 3
      • dugongx on Nov 12, 2015 at 11:55 pm

        To answer your question let me share with you some info. In 1999 a brabd new E46 BMW 318i costed RM208k. 16 years later today a bigger, more powerful and much improved F30 LCI 318i costs RM208k. I am very sure our RM has shrunk at least 30% in the past 16 years.

        In 1999 a new top spec toyota corolla costed RM105k. Today the top spec corolla altis is asking RM140k. So its the greedy companies like UMW are the ones keeping the car priced highly inflated.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 34 Thumb down 3
      • before election: trust us
        after election: dont simply trust politician

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1
    • Why in the world did mazda malaysia decide to remove the i-ActivSense safety suite?? to save cost???
      and yet the price is still high

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • Can Mazda at least make the i-ActivSense safety suite as a cost option?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 3
    • Same L0rrrr on Nov 12, 2015 at 4:54 pm

      If you can’t afford a Lexus RX, this Mazda CX5/3 will do you good. As I said, you won’t go wrong with sushi cars.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 6
  • Pinky on Nov 12, 2015 at 10:46 am

    This is seriously a let down for such prices.. The center console feels a little “Cheap” to me.. And the tiny little cupholder in the middle that were supposed to be an armrest is really eye soaring.. Nope, I will go for the lower spec CX-5..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 6
    • I would very much prefer to have an armrest than those ridiculous cup holders. I cannot understand the prioritization of a place to hold one’s drink over the need to have a place to rest one’s arm while driving !!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1
  • Kesian on Nov 12, 2015 at 11:47 am

    Just look like a normal hatchback :/

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 10
  • Kiedis on Nov 12, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    So cute.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0
  • Rennie A Ghani on Nov 12, 2015 at 1:04 pm

    Only those born with a silver spoon would splurge RM 130K for a D segment SUV….seriously Bermas!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3
  • I’m buying a car worth RM130k to RM135K, and yet I still have to visit a third party workshop to install a freaking ARMREST!
    Come on Mazda you can do better than that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 3
  • BigBalls on Nov 12, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    Other countries have I-active sense even with cheaper priced CX-3, while Malaysia, with more expensive price, doesn’t include this

    What does this tell you?

    Mazda don’t give a hoot about your safety, your lives, the trauma of your family when one of you eventually perish in this vehicle

    Solution is simple, boycott unsafe cars! Wake up Malaysians, you deserve a safe car to drive when paying so much!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 3
  • xxxxxxxx on Nov 12, 2015 at 2:05 pm

    Not bad, another option for my daughther. honestly this is a lady car, same as HRV

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 15
  • tycoon88 on Nov 12, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    in msia, the cup holders are more useful than those armrests coz of our terribly hot weather. these cup holders are actually not only for u 2 merely put a cup of soda u tar powed from McD.

    It can hold ur water tumbler and it is important for ppl who travel a lot for sales like myself here.

    how d heck u expect me to grab my water tumbler from the back seat (assuming I have a front passenger) when I’m driving from KL to penang for my assignment on a bl oo dy hot day!

    Good thinking & choice mazda!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 14
  • Blitz on Nov 12, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    Rm 135 k for a B size segment car? Those who consider buying this then its larger sibling, MX-5 must be stupid… dont even have an armrest. Beter go buy an Accord 2.0 vti-L with thay 135k. Even beter comfort and more legroom

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 7
    • Captain Obvious on Nov 12, 2015 at 7:37 pm

      MX-5. Seriously bro?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2
    • Lance on Nov 13, 2015 at 10:41 am

      If you like legroom and comfort yes go and buy an Accord. Every different cars are design for different individual preference. MX-5 is fun driving car and NOT designed with soft suspension and NOT for comfort. NOT everyone likes big car. Don’t call it stupid when that car doesn’t suits you. Can I call you stupid for buying Accord because of legroom when you can buy a large MPV or van which has far more leg room??

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1
  • If the driver prefers design and more power than the HRV, this is it but when it comes to practicality and space, HRV beats it. The Huge H Logo in front is instantly more recognizable than this mazda too.
    Malaysians are overly obsessed with Honda and too brand cautious. Look around, There are Thousands of Hondas everywhere in Bolehland.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 32 Thumb down 9
    • JTt_for Euroncap 5* on Nov 13, 2015 at 9:12 pm

      It’s very much dependent on what you want. Good resale value HRV, but some people prefer driving dynamics then it’s CX-3. It’s true Contis are pricier but Japs with lower price at times are quite good too. (CX-5)

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2
    • You are absolutely right. Its a damn correct fact that Malaysians are overly obsessed with the HOnda brand. Showrooms are service centers are always always full of people buying, servicing and even arguing with the shit after sales service HM provides. Malaysians dont give a D about the spec also. Empty specced Jazz also sell well because Honda Ma. The Damn Big H logo in front and rear sells well.Most Malaysians are blinded by it thinking it as a Luxury car in bolehland but its only a normal middle class car. Cheers to you bro with your correct facts and statements. The keyboard warriors who disliked your comments are blinded Honda lovers who are afraid of true facts. Thousands of Hrvs and ugly City models every corner of malaysia now bro. LOL

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2
      • Betul bro. Saya punya abang dan kakak pun pakai Kereta Jenama ‘Unggul’ HONDA di malaysia. Macam kereta benchmark untuk ramai rakyat Malaysia. Nampak tu Lambang besar H sahaja, terus Fuyoh ada Vtec bang!
        Saya sendiri beli kereta Mazda CX5 dan mazda 3 untuk keluarga. Setakat ini tiada masalah berbanding Honda dari segi kualiti and kecekapan pemanduan sebab ada enjin skyactiv dan kuasa kuda yg lebih mantap berbanding dgn Vtec tendang masuk. Bukan semua orang suka Honda bro. Saya faham.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2
    • Apa you Mau on Nov 14, 2015 at 6:52 am

      Most cars in mid range prices are about the same quality. Nevertheless people are followers. You shall hear all kinds of comments if you drive less popular cars.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2
  • Semi-Value (Member) on Nov 12, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    people say this car is expensive but then again there are idiots paying 200k or more for a MINI Countryman….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 47 Thumb down 2
    • CX3 is for peasant, richman buys contis

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 18
      • Lance on Nov 13, 2015 at 10:45 am

        I’ve known great numbers of ppl buying contis are mostly managers. Many who bought Japanese are the real taukeh with loads of cash. Why they did that? They know that Japanese cars are far more economical and that’s why they are rich. Don’t judge a person by looking at what he drives.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1
  • Can’t compare cbu to ckd. Mazda and cx3 is about driving experience, hrv is practicality and with that cvt is not so fun driving. I once own the cbu Suzuki swift and then my friend bought the ckd swift, obviously you pay higher price for higher quality. Complaints abt the price expensive, then blame it on our weak ringgit, the first estimate price was rm12xk.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4
  • car lover on Nov 12, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    My god, RM130K++, what the hell is this? No iactivesence? Mazda Malaysia, a u crazy ?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3
    • HRV don’t even have any of the iactivsence features why no complaint?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2
  • JTt_for Euroncap 5* on Nov 13, 2015 at 8:25 pm

    It’s always the case. Whatever that comes to our shores will get watered down. In the US, autonomous breaking is a must.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1
  • Mazda-Ok-what on Nov 13, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    I would go for CX3 if I’m a first time SUV buyer who likes to stand out from the sea of HRVs, Tucsons, CRVs and CX5s; and don’t need space for 5 on my daily drive. From international reviews, this is a 5-star drivers car with good handling characteristics.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2
  • smlok on Nov 14, 2015 at 11:54 pm

    CX-5 any time

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1
  • Nice car.. but a bit expensive.. for it category and specs.. i think bermaz should fairly priced it at below 120K.. or perhaps we have to wait for year end discount..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2
  • Cannot Afford on Nov 18, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    I work very hard, still cannot afford a CX3, maybe I am not good enough to enjoy a driving a better car.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
  • sepat on Dec 30, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    mazda carry a good brand globally but when it enter malaysia, Bermaz spoiled the brand by putting the price too high. Wait till you experienced Mazda Service Centre attending your issues. Too many excuses were given which seems they are avoiding the complaints ..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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