The Mazda CX-3 is quiet enough on the move to avoid you having to raise your voice, even at motorway speeds, but its stiff suspension does cause some intrusive noise over bumps. It’s not intolerable, though, and about average in its class.
The petrol engines can be gruff and aren’t as smooth as some of those in rivals, but the performance they offer more than compensates. The diesel is noisier and there’s some vibration through the pedals and wheel, but it’s perfectly tolerable.
All of the controls are slick and well weighted, without overly sharp responses, which contributes to the Mazda’s excellent on-road manners. Its manual gearshift is precise and doesn’t require much effort, while the automatic gearbox works well, too.