DXA is so much more than just outputting content to JSONs. There is a lot of material about DXA and its features, but some of the most interesting/valuable are :
- it's SDL supported
- the framework has a powerful model binding mechanism that allows you to have strongly typed models in your views
- it has a variety of Modules that enable you very easy integration with other SDL modules like SmartTarget(Experience Optimization), MediaManager, etc. and more, like out of the box support for Experience Manager, community built ones, for example for forms (by Stan) etc... Dxa modules include both Tridion items as well as html helpers and other code needed in the web application
- it comes with an example website so it's easy to learn
The Content Delivery API is still there, you can use still the CD API features, for example, in custom controllers. There was a change however in how you "access" the API, RESTful - using the CIL-s VS in-process (now deprecated), but this is not related to DXA, this change was introduced in Web 8.
You'd be surprised how often this concern arises in discussion, but the truth is that it shouldn't. There are several caching layers to ensure that the performance is not affected poorly. Storage layer, Microservices layer, Model Service (in DXA 2.0), DXA website itself, etc.
Naturally, the performance will depend on the nature of your content and website, but it shouldn't be a problem.