January 4

2024 Dodge Hornet vs Mazda CX-50: Which Is Right For Me?


Small SUVs are hugely popular with the automotive public nowadays, and it’s easy to understand why. They’re spacious enough to be comfortable even on long trips, small enough to help you make your way through city traffic, and agile enough to be fun to drive. The 2024 Dodge Hornet and the 2024 Mazda CX-50 are two great examples of small SUVs. At Huffines Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram (CJDR) in Plano, Texas, we want to show you how they compare.

Hornet vs. CX-50: Overview

The 2024 Dodge Hornet is a small SUV with above-average performance for its class. It’s part of the first Hornet generation, which was launched in 2023, and shares a platform with the sporty Italian car Alfa Romeo Tonale. Unlike other small SUVs, which sacrifice performance for efficiency, the Hornet stays true to Dodge’s tradition of building powerful vehicles and uses a powerful turbocharged 2.0-liter engine that can produce up to 268 horsepower as standard.

The 2024 Mazda CX-50 is also part of its first generation, launched in 2023. It’s practical and easy to drive, while also having above-average off-roading performance. Despite being one of the smallest models in its class, the CX-50 has a decent amount of interior space and is pretty comfortable even on longer drives. It’s also very agile, but the price you pay for that is a stiff suspension.

Multiple Trim Levels To Choose From

The 2024 Dodge Hornet is available in the following four trim levels, plus some additional packages:

  • GT: The GT includes many features you’ll only find as options for other vehicles, such as automatic headlights, 17-inch aluminum wheels, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and dual-zone automatic climate control. Its tech features include a 10.25-inch touch-screen interface, a 12.3-inch digital instrument panel, a six-speaker audio system, and wireless smartphone connectivity through Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.
  • GT Plus: The next trim focuses on comfort and comes with many features to make life as pleasant as possible for everyone inside. Features include a remote start system, a hands-free power liftgate, elegant leather upholstery, a sunroof, heated front seats and steering wheel, a wireless charging pad, and a premium Harman Kardon sound system.
  • R/T and R/T Plus: The R/T trim uses the standard GT configuration as its base and adds features such as 18-inch wheels, high-performance Brembo brakes, a heated steering wheel, and heated front seats. The R/T Plus trim includes everything the GT Plus and R/T trims have to offer.
  • Optional packages: There are multiple optional packages available for the 2024 Hornet that add various new features. Some notable ones are the Blacktop package, which blackens the wheels and some exterior features, the Tech Pack, which includes multiple active safety features, and the Track Pack, which makes the Hornet sportier with 20-inch wheels, adjustable suspension dampers, and sport-styled steering wheel.

The 2024 Mazda CX-50 is available in no less than eight trim levels:

  • Select: The CX-50’s base trim is also well equipped. It includes features such as 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, an eight-speaker sound system, and remote keyless entry and start.
  • Preferred: This trim focuses on drivers who live in cold areas. It includes heated exterior mirrors, a windshield wiper de-icer, and heated front seats, among others.
  • Premium: This is the opposite of the Preferred trim, as it fits those who regularly drive in sunny areas. A panoramic sunroof, auto-dimming rearview mirror, and wireless smartphone charger are a few of its features.
  • Premium Plus: This trim aims to add more style to the CX-50. It does so with features such as 20-inch wheels, leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, and a head-up display.
  • Turbo and Turbo Meridian Edition: The Turbo trim adds style and performance features such as leather upholstery and paddle shifters. The Turbo Meridian Edition boosts its off-roading performance with 18-inch wheels and all-terrain tires.
  • Turbo Premium and Turbo Premium Plus: These top two trims are the best the CX-50 has to offer. Features include ventilated front seats, a 12-speaker Bose sound system, and heated rear seats.

Excellent Performance

The main selling point for a small SUV is that it can be both useful and performant, and both the Hornet and CX-50 excel in these categories. The 2024 Hornet’s turbocharged 2.0-liter engine has a standard power output of 268 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque.

If you want more, the R/T and R/T Plus trims have a plug-in hybrid setup that generates 288 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque while also allowing drivers to go for up to 33 miles solely on electric power. This configuration pushes the Hornet from zero to 60 mph in only 5.6 seconds. 

The 2024 CX-50 is also powerful and performant but doesn’t quite reach the Hornet’s numbers. Its standard engine is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 187 horsepower and 186 lb-ft of torque. The Turbo trims use an upgraded powertrain that includes a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder that can produce 227 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. It goes from zero to 60 mph in 7.2 seconds, which isn’t bad for its class but inferior to the Hornet’s 5.6 seconds. 

Spacious and Comfortable Interiors

Any respectable SUV has an upscale and comfy interior, and these two certainly qualify. The 2024 Dodge Hornet has comfortable seats and ample legroom, even in the back. It features 27 cubic feet of cargo space, plus multiple small item storage spaces throughout the cabin. The 2024 Mazda CX-50’s interior is also spacious and comfortable, with the sound insulation system doing a great job of keeping exterior noises out of the cabin. Its cargo space is 31.4 cubic feet.

Visit Us at Huffines CJDR Plano

Although both the 2024 Dodge Hornet and 2024 Mazda CX-50 are excellent small SUVs, the Hornet just edges this one, mainly due to its superior powertrains. If you’d like to see the Hornet for yourself and take it for a test drive, come on over to Huffines CJDR in Plano, Texas. We’ll answer all your questions. If you decide it’s the right vehicle for you, we can also help you find the best way of financing your purchase. Contact us today to schedule a test drive.

Image via Dodge


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