At the end of next month, Mazda will reveal its medium-term plans, which should accelerate its electrification, having decided to wait to check the market trend in these times of turbulent circumstances around the world.
current circumstances have not made it easy for its executives to make a series of decisions that will mark the future of the brand. Therefore, what he had planned was subject to a profound review because many factors were outside the control of the Hiroshima firm. After this period, and with much clearer ideas, the brand advances some of the medium-term decisions, before its plans are fully revealed at the end of next month.
Mazda wanted to make that strategy public earlier this year. However, as Automotive News reported at the time, the company decided to delay this communication due to market instabilities. A wide variety of factors were combined as reasons for this delay, including factory closures in China due to Covid-19 cases, the war in Ukraine, ongoing delays and inconveniences in the global supply chain, and tax credits for electric vehicles included in the Inflation Reduction Act that were being debated in the United States Congress at the time.
Some of these problems have particularly affected Mazda. Its sales are down 21% compared to September of last year, Automotive News reports, in a market that is down 13% overall. “ The good news is that factory production is on the rise. “Now we are replenishing the inventory and the performance has gone up,” says Mazda, indicating that it is reflected in the fact that the production in the factories has increased and that the situation tends to unblock.
With this new forecast of a more favorable scenario, Mazda has advanced some of the plans that will be launched next month. The Japanese manufacturer will “slightly” strengthen its objectives in electric vehicles, which for the firm already represents progress, given the reluctance it has been showing in recent years to implement these technologies. Let us remember that for now, it only has one 100% electric vehicle in its range, the MX-30, which also has specifications that are, at least, questionable in terms of its price-range ratio and a design that is also controversial.
Currently, Mazda is targeting 25% of cars sold by 2030 to be electric vehicles, with a dedicated battery electric platform not hitting its production lines until 2025. The promised rotary engine that will function as a range extender for the MX-30 and which will allow it to achieve a longer range using gasoline as an extended-range electric vehicle is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023.
Beyond the numbers, Mazda also hints at a strategy that goes beyond technologies and powertrains: to make human-centered engineering at the core of its “brand purpose.” It is based on the current philosophy ” jinba ittai “, which is Japanese for “horse and rider as one”. Mazda has already been designing its current generation of models with a focus on how the human body best responds to high-speed movement, minimizing sudden and awkward movements and adjusting suspensions to mimic natural movements, for example. This is “the center of everything we do,” says the executive who has advanced these future strategies to Automotive News.