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From Car-Guy Brian Champagne: The Cross-Over Saga

Brian Champagne

More of you are buying crossovers instead of cars, and automakers are responding. UPR Contributor Brian Champagne is worried about sounding like a broken record but he says he is relieved this week’s test drive didn’t sound like a broken crossover.

That’s the CX30 Mazda loaned us struggling to get up a steep, loose dirt hill. It’s a crossover and Mazda might even be a little ticked to find out we did this, but after much pushing it harder than we would if we owned it, it made it up. It did not get up the SUVs and four-by-four trucks only hill.

The CX-30 came out in the U.S. in 2020 just above the CX-3 crossover in the lineup, but now Mazda announced the CX-3 is dead to us for 2022. Also letting its VISA expire is the Mazda6, a fine sedan.

If you follow this seemingly never-ending automotive series, you know that’s one of our themes… watching cars, some of them very fun to drive, get killed off as we get more not-that-great-on-road, not-that-great-off-road crossovers.

Perhaps another theme is the electrics are coming. Mazda announced the MX-30. They said it will be an electric crossover, it will have cork inside because the company started by making cork in 1920, but they didn’t say the range and when we might see one.

What’s kind of scary about the Mazda6 getting axed is that it’s wasn’t Mazda’s worst seller. That’s the beautiful, fun, youthful for anyone MX-5 Miata, may it live on in limited-numbers glory.


Brian Champagne grew up in the less-famous Central California but left after starting his television news career there. He worked 22 years in news for NBC, ABC, Fox, and CBS affiliates in four markets. He served as chief photographer for KTXL-TV in Sacramento, but worked in front of the camera, too.