Honda HR-V vs. Mazda CX-3: Practicality or Fun To Drive?

Wilson/Aug 16, 2019 03:43 PM

As we all know, Honda HR-V is one of the best selling B-Segment SUV in Malaysia, or even in the world. It is indeed a very practical choice, but some people think it is too moderate, and hardly can tell prominent features from the HR-V. So Is there a better option in this class? Sure. And the answer is the Mazda CX-3. To tell more, let's compare them!

The 2019 Honda HR-V combines ample of space, practicality and nice-enough cabin to make it a good B-Segment SUV. For 2019 the Honda HR-V gets some updated styling like the new family-style grille, The LED headlights for hight specs and an enlarged 17-inch rim (18 inches for RS spec). In terms of safety features, 6 airbags become standard, but Honda Lane Watch system, a new feature for HR-V, only can be found on the RS spec, which also gets Variable Gear Ratio Steering System to improve driving control.

The HR-V feels somewhat underpowered, and its 141-horsepower, 1.8-litre engine tends to be sluggish when paired with Honda's CVT transmission. But of course, it's applicable for city driving, where an intense driving situation is rare; and the ride is comfortable and smooth.

Honda HR-V also provides a Hybrid spec, so owners can pay RM 120,800 to get a better power output and lower fuel consumption.

The length, width and height of the HR-V are 4,346 x 1,790 x 1,605 mm and the wheelbase is 2,610 mm. The interior space on the 2019 HR-V is decent for such a small SUV. Honda's Magic Seat can flip up to carry taller items in the second row, which makes the interior feel especially spacious. Its root volume is 437 liters, down the rear seat can reach 1462 liters.

Mazda CX-3

Although the size is similar to HR-V (CX-3 length, width, height: 4,275 x 1,765 x 1,535 mm, wheelbase 2,570 mm), the 2018 Mazda CX-3 feels a bit cramped in the second row. Its root volume is 264 liters and can be extended up to only 1164 liters.

However, the CX-3 has its advantages, including more special style and surprisingly upscale upholstery.

Its 2.0L SKYACTIV engine is more powerful (154 hp at 6,000 rpm), more efficient (fuel consumption 6.1L/100km vs. HR-V 1.8L 6.6L/100km) in the nature. Counting in the SkyActiv-Drive 6AT gearbox and the Mazda's G-Vectoring Control (GVC) system, which doubled the powertrain might, the CX-3 is engaging and fun to drive on the road.


They are both B-Segment(subcompact) SUVs that offer function and style at a very good price.

2019 Honda HR-V Advantages

Ample interior space, a comfortable ride with natural-feeling steering.

2018 Mazda CX-3 Advantages

Great styling, luxurious interior, quiet and efficient engine, and athletic, fun-to-drive handling.

Final Recommendation

While the 2018 Mazda CX-3 has great styling and athletic handling, it falls behind the 2019 Honda HR-V in terms of practicality. The interior space in the Honda HR-V makes it useful for housing people and their stuff from point A to Point B even if the engine is somewhat laggy. If you want a better motivation, I would highly recommend you to go for the Hybrid spec.