It’s here! The fully electric Mazda MX-30 EV will be launching in Malaysia by Q4 2022
Hans · Apr 23, 2022 12:00 PM
2022 Mazda MX-30 EV is previewed for Malaysia, prices to be announced in Q4 2022
Imported (CBU) from Japan, but comes with Type 2 AC charging socket and CCS2 DC charging
35.5 kWh battery is on the small side, 199 km range (WLTP), but emphasis is on lightweight for an engaging drive, and premium interior materials - values Mazda is known for
Bermaz Motor has confirmed yesterday that it will be launching the Mazda MX-30 in Malaysia later this year. Globally, the Mazda MX-30 is available either as a mild-hybrid (MHEV) or a fully electric battery EV (BEV).
Only the battery EV variant will be launched in Malaysia. The model will be imported (CBU) from Japan.
The sole Mazda MX-30 unit in Malaysia was previewed at media event at Mazda Glenmarie yesterday. The model is finished in Soul Red Crystal.
As this is only a preview, prices have yet to be revealed, but it should not stray too far away from a circa RM 200,000 price.
Yes, the Hyundai Kona has a bigger 39.5 kWh battery and a longer 305 km (WLTP) range versus the Mazda MX-30’s smaller 35.5 kWh and 199 km (WLTP) range, but being a Mazda, the MX-30’s cabin is much, much better place to sit in.
The Mazda MX-30 makes 145 PS and 271 Nm, driving the front wheels.
Since its battery is rather small, charging time is also a lot faster, even when using a regular AC charger, just 5 hours when using a 6.6 kW charger. There’s no need for a more powerful 11 kW charger.
With a 40 kWDC fast charger, charging time is reduced to 36 minutes (from 0% to 80%).
The MX-30 uses European-format Type 2 socket for AC charging and CC2 for DC fast charging.
Mazda’s rationale for fitting a smaller, lower driving range 35.5 kWh is best explained with a power bank analogy. Do you prefer carrying a big, heavy, high capacity power bank to work or a small and light one?
Sure, a bigger battery gets you further but do you really want to drive an EV from KL to Penang in 7 hours when a hybrid or a regular combustion engine car – which these EV owners will certainly also own - can cover the same distance in half the time?
The way Mazda sees it, the people who are buying an EV today will use it mostly for short urban trips, to travel to work and back for example, and a 199 km range is more than enough, even without daily charging.
With a smaller 310 kg battery, weight (a huge problem for EVs) is kept in check, which allows Mazda to better preserve its famed Jinba Ittai ‘one-ness between car and driver’ driving experience.
The Mazda MX-30 weighs 1,645 kg. The 35.5 kWh water-cooled battery alone weighs 310 kg.
But despite the smaller battery, it’s not any lighter than the 39.2 kWh Hyundai Kona Electric e-Lite though (1,535 kg). The reason? A lot of the weight saving is negated by the stylish rear-hinged ‘suicide doors,’ (Mazda prefers to call it ‘freestyle doors’) which requires very complex reinforcements to protect occupants against side-impact collision.
For reference, the Mazda MX-30’s sister-car, the combustion engine Mazda CX-30 with a 2.0-litre 4-cylinder engine and a 6-speed, front-wheel drive automatic transmission weighs 1,441 kg.
Like the Hyundai Kona Electric, the MX-30 has a rather low ground clearance, despite it being an SUV. Peer under the car and you will notice a battery protection structure. Ground clearance for the Mazda MX-30 is just 130 mm (with 75 kg driver).
For reference, the outgoing RU generation Honda HR-V has a 170 mm ground clearance.
Aside from the Rolls-Royce-like freestyle doors, the highlight of the MX-30 is its uniquely premium interior made from sustainably-sourced materials.
The centre console for example, is made from the bark of sustainably grown cork oak trees. The bark is removed using a process that doesn't damage the tree, allowing for faster regeneration.
The upper section of the door is trimmed in fabric made from recycled PET plastic bottles. Different from previous applications of plastics or leather, the recycled plastic fibre contains air, providing a soft touch and reinforcing the sense of openness within in the cabin.
Detailed specifications not revealed but the preview car seen here comes with:
Adaptive cruise control
Autonomous emergency braking
360-degree parking camera
Bose audio system
Power-operated driver's seat
Given the nascent state of Malaysia's EV market, Bermaz don't expect to sell a lot of Mazda MX-30, only about 50 units (throughout the CBU EV tax exemption period, until 31-December 2023) according to a Bermaz spokesperson.
The company also does not expect to make much profit from the MX-30, as the volume potential is just too low, so the company says 100% of duty savings from the tax exemption will be passed on to customers. Still, one can't expect this EV to be priced like a Mazda CX-5.
Prices have yet to be announced but a reasonable estimate puts it at circa RM 200,000.
The MX-30 will only be sold at selected Mazda outlets, and Bermaz's flagship Mazda Glenmarie outlet will certainly be one of them.