Mazda has officially launched its first mass production electric vehicle, the Mazda MX-30.
Unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show today, the 2020 Mazda MX-30 isn’t the first Mazda EV (that title belongs to the Mazda Demio which was offered with an electric powertrain in Japan in 2012), but it is certainly the first model slated for mass production.
The MX-30 unveiled in Japan is the final production version, and the Mazda EV is confirmed for North America. Here’s everything you probably want to know about the latest electric vehicle to hit the market.
What’s New About the 2020 Mazda MX-30?
Obviously everything. It’s a completely new vehicle and a first significant electric vehicle for Mazda. It will feature a fully electric engine powered by a 35.5-kWh battery. The smaller battery could eventually be joined by a range extended based on Mazda’s rotary engine.
Called e-Skyactiv, the new electric powertrain promises to deliver “outstanding response with smooth dynamic behavior to achieve performance that drivers can enjoy naturally”.
Mazda also mentioned an artificial sound system for the MX-30. In other words, the electric vehicle will reproduce the sound of a traditional engine through the speakers. We’re curious to see how traditional EV buyers will take to the idea of a fake engine sound being played as they drive.
From the press release: “Mazda’s e-Skyactiv provides aural feedback to the driver that enables him or her to subconsciously recognize the torque status of the power unit and thus control vehicle speed with greater precision. For example, when people hear the sound of a river flowing, they can imagine the amount of water and speed at which it is flowing based solely on the sound frequency and sound pressure. Mazda takes advantage of this human characteristic by actively controlling the sound through the audio system in a way that sounds natural and pleasing to the driver’s ears.”
Given the battery’s size, we expect the MX-30 to offer roughly 200 kilometres of range which works for most people, but definitely less than the MX-30’s eventual competition.
The Mazda MX-30 also features rear suicide doors like on the Mazda RX-8 which open up to 80 degrees to make entry/exit easier.
Inside, the MX-30 features a large digital centre console with a raised platform for the controls and gear lever. It’s both modern and clean inside the MX-30 with a combination of current Mazda design elements like the dashboard and the new console.
How Much Will it Cost?
It’s a bit too early to know how much the Mazda MX-30 will cost, but you can expect a starting price under the $45,000 mark to qualify for the Canadian iZEV program.
When Will It Be Released?
The 2020 Mazda MX-30 will go on sale in the second half of 2020.
Which Models Will Compete With The 2020 Mazda MX-30?
The Mazda MX-30 will compete with the Hyundai Kona EV, the Kia Soul EV and the Kia Niro EV primarily. The Nissan LEAF, Chevrolet Bolt and Tesla Model 3 are also competitors.
What Do We Think About It?
The MX-30’s range is a bit surprising in the sense that we’re now used to seeing electric vehicles with 350-400 kilometres of range these days. That said, the rotary range extender is certainly intriguing and we can’t wait to learn more.
In any case, we are happy to see Mazda join the EV segment with a vehicle that promises to be fun to drive like every other Mazda vehicle. The interior is stunning and the exterior isn’t too quirky, just quirky enough.
If the price comes in under the competition, the lesser range will be quickly forgotten.