Mazda is known for its laser focus on driving dynamics. The DNA of its brand-defining sports car, the Miata, influences every vehicle it makes, from the sleek 3 sedan and hatchback to the new CX-50 crossover. It’s something enthusiasts love; however, 50% of Mazda’s North American sales come from the CX-5. She needs to make more big cars, and that’s something she’s well aware of, because Automotive News reports.
The Japanese automaker wants to boost sales to record levels within four years, and as such that means it’s turning away from cars its engineers might want to build versus those they have to build. The coming years will see a flash production of mostly electrified SUVs, including two of the biggest companions to the CX-50 in North America; the CX-70 and the CX-90. That doesn’t mean small cars or even sedans aren’t on the table, but it does mean they’re not Mazda’s top priority.
Mazda’s Global Marketing and Sales Director, Yasuhiro Aoyama, said, “We expect the United States to provide us with more consistent and robust growth in the future,” and really, the brand doesn’t. has no choice but to focus on the United States. Like A remarks, North America is the only market where Mazda sales are not languishing. So it makes sense that the company has just invested millions in a new factory in Hunstville, Alabama to build the CX-50 and other future models. Indeed, at the CX-50 media launch I attended, spokespersons pointed out that this new plant – built next to a Toyota plant on the same site – would be very flexible, capable of producing many different types of vehicles on the same assembly line.
All of this raises the question of Mazda’s ability to produce cars that aren’t SUVs, like the Miata and the highly anticipated but reasonably dubious Mazda 6 sedan successor. The Miata is certainly safe, and Mazda has patented some interesting details regarding perhaps the new car’s powertrain. As for an RWD sedan, however, the automaker hasn’t even officially confirmed that such a vehicle is on the way, but there’s reason to believe plans haven’t been scrapped altogether, as d other publications have reported it.
The whirlwind of negativity surrounding the alleged cancellation of the car – which some have gone so far as to call “official” – is based on a single statement from Mazda Europe’s head of development and engineering, Joachim Kunz. Importantly, when talking about a potential successor to the Mazda 6, he said Coach that Mazda “I would love to have it, but right now the most important thing is to sell SUVs.” For some reason it was assumed that Kunz – whose jurisdiction is strictly European – was speaking for all global markets when he made this statement. Europe and the UK which Kunz oversees are among the least lucrative markets for large sedans, and you only have to look as far back as the now-cancelled Ford Mondeo in the UK to prove that point.
The United States and especially China are still relatively strong midsize sedan markets, which keeps the door open for sales here. Indeed, some Japanese sedans and sports cars are sold in their home markets and in the United States in particular, such as the upcoming Nissan Z, the new Subaru WRX and the current Lexus IS, while they are not or will not be sold in the UK. . Combine that with all the cars Mazda is building on its new RWD platform – four so far – and the cost of developing a sedan, even for a small automaker like Mazda, is dramatically reduced. If he can match the right price with his move upmarket, which A the reports are actually well received, so there’s no reason why, at the right volume, the car couldn’t pull it off.
Ultimately, the pattern of providing a slew of cost-effective SUVs to support at least one brand-defining vehicle is nothing new; this has been proven by just about every German car manufacturer, from BMW to Porsche. With Mazda’s popularity and reputation focused on the Miata in the United States, as well as what it hopes will be increased profitability from its new vehicle lineup, its future could be bright. The foundations are laid; we just have to wait and see if it works.
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