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Mazda: Development and Technology News

 
Old 06-24-2010, 07:56 AM
  #81  
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I loved my Mazdaspeed3 ... It wasn't a bad car at all especially for the price.

The new ones are even better (style aside).

But really the Miata and the Mazda3 keep that brand going. The CX9 is a good SUV apparently but there aren't really any other products other than the first two that I mentioned that are best in class.
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Old 06-24-2010, 11:32 AM
  #82  
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Originally Posted by Ken1997TL View Post


His picture says it all IMO:
i didnt know woody harrelson was acura's lead designer
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Old 06-24-2010, 11:39 AM
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Old 06-24-2010, 11:40 AM
  #84  
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Old 06-24-2010, 11:40 AM
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Sorry for having a bad taste in car design.

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Old 06-24-2010, 11:41 AM
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1st gen speed3 owners call it GenPu.
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Old 09-08-2010, 06:16 PM
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Post Mazda Gives A Glimpse At Kodo-Themed Mazda2, Mazda3

From Motor Authority: http://www.motorauthority.com/blog/1...-mazda2-mazda3

The audio sounds like the background to a James Garner TV montage, but the visuals are pure cutting-edge Mazda design. Wrapping the Kodo design theme around a compact three-door hatchback model, the video gives us an idea of what the next Mazda2 or Mazda3 could look like.

While we're big fans of the driving, features, and overall value of the current Mazda2 and Mazda3, those smiley faces can get a bit tiresome. Particularly on the fish-gilled grin of the 2010 Mazdaspeed3. Fortunately, that particular design feature is much improved with a more angular, aggressive and decidedly less cheery look with the Kodo theme.

For more on the Kodo theme, be sure to check out Mazda's Shinari Concept if you missed it the first time around. The new car is the design study for the coming generation of Mazda's vehicles, much like the Nagare has been until the Shinari's arrival.
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Old 09-08-2010, 06:31 PM
  #88  
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What's with Mazda and wanting to put a "face" on the front end of their cars??!?!
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Old 09-08-2010, 10:46 PM
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^ Um...BMW is just as bad. Worse IMO...their cars all have this look.
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Old 09-09-2010, 10:50 AM
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^^ Interesting....post said BWM "face"....I've never noticed it.


Coincidence or not, it just seems quite a few Mazda's have a "face".....weird.
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Old 09-09-2010, 11:13 AM
  #91  
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Quite an evil face that is.
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Old 10-25-2010, 06:19 PM
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Post Update on Mazda Future Plans


Mazda's sales in the United States this year have not quite kept pace with the overall U.S. market. The automaker's sales are up 9% to 174,770 vehicles through September, compared with the industry's 10% advance. But CEO Takashi Yamanouchi sees big growth around the corner. Over the next 5 years, he expects U.S. sales to double to 400,000 units.

The Japanese carmaker is banking on new green-car technologies, referred to collectively as SkyActiv, that rely on efficient gasoline engines and weight-cutting engineering. Yamanouchi says most models will have the fuel-saving features by 2015. They should help move the brand more upmarket and possibly command more premium pricing, he adds.

In the meantime, Mazda is grappling with the yen's surge against the dollar and uncertainty about its longtime partner, Ford Motor Co., which is widely expected to further cut its holdings in Mazda. Ford's stake has dropped to 11% today from 33% in 2008.

Yamanouchi, 65, spoke with Asia Editor Hans Greimel through an interpreter on Thursday, Oct. 21, about Mazda's latest technology, its future with Ford and his market outlook.

What is your outlook for the U.S. auto market this year and next?

We based our assumptions on third-party forecasts for a strong recovery to 12 million units annually. But recently, it is said getting to 12 million will be very difficult. Unless the industry grows significantly, we can't expect a major recovery in Mazda's sales volume, either.

In April, we announced a midterm framework looking 6 years ahead. We now have global sales of 1.2 million units, and the outlook takes us to 1.7 million units. In the United States, we are looking to double the current level of 190,000 to 200,000 units to around 400,000.

And the big assumption for that is that the U.S. industry recovers to the level of 17 million units that was achieved in 2000. So from 2012, we assume the U.S. industry will slowly return to the level of 17 million.

What about your market share?

If you just do simple arithmetic, we assume some improvement in market share. The reason is that by 2015, when the industry returns to around 17 million, if you look at the segmentation of the recovery, small passenger cars and crossovers will be driving the rebound. We have strong products in that segment currently, and in the future we will have full market changes incorporating our new SkyActiv technology. Sales of 400,000 is a big figure. But if the market comes back as we assume, then we think this is achievable with the technology we have.

You plan to improve brand value and customer loyalty. How will that work in the United States?

In the United States, we just kicked off the initiative. Activities will focus on enhancing the brand. Take pricing, for example. We are not just going to look at the competition and set competitive prices, like we did in the past.

In addition, we will also pinpoint the segment's target customer to determine the appropriate price, and then pursue activities to win the customers' understanding for that pricing. If we can do that, then we can reduce incentives and improve residual value.

Up to 3 years ago, we put our incentives at a level close to U.S. domestic brands. But right now, our incentives are low even among the big Japanese makers.

Mazda wants to move its image upscale. How far do you want to take it?


Generally speaking, we want to aim for the upper nonpremium segment. We'd like to gradually increase our positioning. It's not that coming out with one product will allow us to do this.

Will the move allow you to command higher prices?

If we include the SkyActiv technologies, we will have to decide based on the situation. We don't think technology alone will allow us to suddenly increase our prices. We need to define the customer. And then we need to align the mind-sets of our dealer network, our local people and how we conceive of our products. Otherwise, it will be difficult to achieve that kind of higher position or price. That means it will take more time.

How do your new SkyActiv technologies play into this branding?

When we have a product that incorporates the full SkyActiv technology, it will probably have fuel economy comparable to a hybrid vehicle. So whether we price at the same level as a hybrid or not is something that needs to be given careful consideration. It will provide us with huge opportunities. By 2016, about 80% of our products will incorporate SkyActiv products. We'll go through a full-model cycle for nearly our whole lineup by then.

How is the yen's appreciation affecting Mazda, and what are you doing?

It has a significant impact on Mazda. What we can do about it is continue building the brand and capturing as many opportunities in terms of sales volume and pricing.

We also aim to achieve more efficient operations by reducing fixed and variable costs, leaving nothing sacred. There is no limit to this activity of eliminating waste. For example, we had set a global sales forecast for the current fiscal year at 1.27 million units, and we think that the full-year results will significantly overachieve this earlier forecast.

The reason is that despite the strong yen, we are realizing opportunities to expand sales by improving the model mix and pricing. We don't have any one magic bullet. It's a combination of many small actions that accumulate.

Your SkyActiv-G gasoline engine debuts next year in the United States. What product will get it?

I'm not prepared to touch on that today. But from 2012 we'll have full implementation of the SkyActiv technologies in the United States and Japan, including engine, frame, chassis and transmission -- a 100-kilogram [220 pounds] reduction in weight.

When will your hybrid technology land in the United States?


We will be getting the core technology from Toyota and mating it to the SkyActiv-G engine. And we have said that we will develop it in Japan and introduce it first in Japan in 2013. Beyond that, we'll make a decision based on individual market conditions.

Do you think hybrids will sell in the United States?

I think right now they are only popular on the West and East coasts. But if we mate the SkyActiv-D diesel engine and automatic transmission with the Mazda6-class sedan, we can achieve 43 mpg under U.S. standards. Mileage of 43 mpg is better than many hybrids in the United States. And it's the same performance as the Mazda2.

I can't say when we will introduce a hybrid to the United States, but we can offer products superior to hybrids before then.

Ford is widely expected to cut its stake again in Mazda. What is the status of your relationship?

In 2008 the relationship between Ford and Mazda changed from an equity affiliate to completely independent companies. But we also announced that the strategic relationship had not changed. And that state continues to this day.

Last fall Mazda increased its capital base, so Ford's 13 percent stake was diluted to 11 percent. But the relationship between the two companies has not changed, and we continue to have meetings to find opportunities where both companies can cooperate.

To what degree does Mazda's rollout of SkyActiv signal its independence?


The media try to portray a change in the capital relationship as meaning the 2 car companies are going their separate ways. But 4 years ago, Mazda and Ford had talks where it was agreed Mazda would pursue SkyActiv, and Ford would pursue EcoBoost. So that's 2 years before November 2008, when Mazda was still an equity-based affiliate of Ford.

Both companies were successful in developing their own technologies with the thought that there might be opportunities in the future to exchange and share.

In what way are you continuing cooperation with Ford?


We have formal meetings of senior management twice a year, and there are many submeetings that develop items for the agenda. R&d and product development items are the most common. For example, in our flexible-manufacturing area, we are able to achieve extremely lower capital investment than Ford. And Ford has come out many times to learn about what we're doing. We are also consulting them on our marketing activities.

How can you optimize the use of your U.S. plant in Michigan to offset the higher yen?

We produce the Mazda6 at Flat Rock, and the demand for that segment has shrunk dramatically. We were planning to build and sell 100,000 units of the Mazda6 in the United States. There were lots of customer inquiries, and the product was highly evaluated. But once the economic crisis hit, the segment shrank and our 100,000-unit plan was virtually halved, to about 50,000. We have to more effectively utilize the plant.

Could you add a model there?


It is a difficult decision because we have to consider the hollowing out of Japan, unless the concept is that we can produce incremental sales volume at Flat Rock. It is not that easy to put in a new product just because the yen is strong. It has to be considered in totality with the sales capability of the United States.
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Old 11-16-2010, 02:07 PM
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Post Update


After 4 years of hyping its curvy, fluid Nagare styling philosophy--but developing only one production vehicle with the look--Mazda has changed design course.

Now the Japanese carmaker wants to go with a simpler, more upscale style. So the design language seen in the Shinari concept car being unveiled at the Los Angeles auto show this week represents Mazda's future.

The Shinari look will begin to appear on production vehicles within 2 years, says Derek Jenkins, design director for Mazda North American Operations.

What happened to Nagare? It went out with global design director Laurens Van den Acker, who developed the look but moved to Renault last year after a 3 year stint with Mazda.

Nagare, the Japanese word for "flow," has been the styling basis for multiple Mazda concept cars unveiled since 2006.

The redesigned 2012 Mazda5 minivan that goes on sale in January is the 1st production vehicle to incorporate the Nagare design ideas. It will also be the last, Jenkins says.

Van den Acker was replaced by Ikuo Maeda, who as a designer for Mazda in Hiroshima penned the silhouette of the Mazda RX-8 sports car.

Jenkins, 40, oversees Mazda's North American design studio, about an hour south of Los Angeles in Irvine, Calif. The studio is 1 of Mazda's 3 global design centers. The U.S. studio competes with counterparts near Frankfurt, Germany, and in Hiroshima, Japan, to come up with exterior and interior designs for production vehicles.

For example, prior to Jenkins' arrival at Mazda in 2009 the U.S. studio had a hand in designing the current Mazda3 and Mazda6 sedans, as well as the CX-7 and CX-9 crossovers.

Evolution

The low-slung 4-door Shinari concept, which looks more Aston Martin than Miata, embodies kodo, Japanese for "soul of motion," Mazda says.

Jenkins says the transition from Nagare to kodo is more evolution than outright change in direction. Flowing lines and the emphasis on the "face" of new vehicles--the configuration of the grille, headlights and fascia--will continue with the kodo philosophy.

But the heavily textured surfaces of the Nagare era, seen in the beltline of the new Mazda5, will be gone, Jenkins said. New kodo-inspired designs will also feature a more cab-rearward layout; Nagare concepts were more cab-forward, Jenkins said.

"We won't be pushing so much of the textured or layered surface treatments," Jenkins said. "We've gone back to a simpler, cleaner overall palate."

A major point of emphasis will be on vehicle proportions. Wheels will be closer to the corners, and vehicles will sit lower and wider, Jenkins said.

Moving upscale

The new design direction is part of an effort to evoke an image of prestige. Mazda executives say that the goal is not to get itself into premium- or luxury-car territory, but to make its vehicles distinctive and objects of drivers' desire.


"Things like proportions, the front end, surface quality and how the car sits on its wheels are so fundamental to why a car looks strong and expensive and desirable,"
Jenkins said, "and I think those are things that aren't so cost-prohibitive that we can't bring them into a more value-oriented proposition."

Jenkins says the company also wants to improve its interiors--aluminum trim, for example, rather than surfaces painted to look like brushed aluminum.

"I always use the analogy that if I pull up to a restaurant, it doesn't matter if it's a $15,000 car or a $50,000 car, I want it to look good in that setting," Jenkins says. "It is ultimately part of the ownership experience."
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by TSX69 View Post


Jenkins says the company also wants to improve its interiors--aluminum trim, for example, rather than surfaces painted to look like brushed aluminum.


Ya listening, Honda?
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Old 11-16-2010, 10:52 PM
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thrusting motion :hump:
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:40 AM
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Mazda: Future Models news


Robert Davis likes to go fast.

Mazda's senior vice president of U.S. operations races RX-8s and MX-5 Miatas in his spare time. He ran the 1991 Mazda 787 Le Mans race car at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion last August, attacking Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca at speeds of nearly 200 mph.

But Laguna Seca isn't the only place where Davis needs to zoom-zoom.

Mazda is racing to boost its U.S. market share to 2.5% and sales to 400,000 vehicles by 2014. The ambitious goal -- a 74% gain over 2010 U.S. sales of 229,566 units -- would be a milestone for the company. Mazda has never sold 400,000 vehicles in its nearly 40 years in this country.

And the company faces significant obstacles. For instance, Mazda is highly vulnerable to the profit-punishing strength of the Japanese yen. Japan-made vehicles account for 85% of its U.S. sales.

Whether it will assemble vehicles in the United States to offset the yen's pressure is unclear. Mazda said in June that it will cease production of the Mazda6 at the AutoAlliance International assembly plant in Flat Rock, Mich., when the car's life cycle ends, probably around 2012. The plant is Mazda's 50-50 joint venture with Ford Motor Co. and its only U.S. manufacturing center. A new 140,000-unit plant in Salamanca, Mexico, is scheduled to be producing small cars in 2013. That output, originally meant for Latin America, also may come to the United States, Mazda says.

Also, Mazda is moving away from sharing high-volume platforms with Ford. That means that Mazda has to shoulder the full cost of vehicle development. But Davis says the company is ready to boost sales.

"Our product strategy and what we have in the pipeline is going to allow us to grow," he said. "What that market share becomes and what the total sales number becomes depends really on where the industry ends up, but we see our growth led by our ability to keep our current customers and attract the young customers that we're already doing pretty well with."

Here's what Mazda executives see as the brand's strengths:
-- A dealer network with more exclusive stores and improving customer-experience ratings.

-- Higher quality vehicles with strong residuals.

-- Lighter, more fuel-efficient vehicles that maintain performance and show a new design language.

-- More aggressive and focused advertising with a new agency.
'The glass ceiling'


O'Sullivan: Increasing consumer awareness "has been the biggest issue."


Jim O'Sullivan, CEO of Mazda North American Operations, says Mazda needs to increase consumer awareness.

"That has been the biggest issue," he said. "It's been the glass ceiling for us."

Mazda is counting on its advertising agency, WPP Group of London, to raise awareness by focusing on Mazda's fun-to-drive bona fides.

In October 2010 WPP formed Team Mazda to handle Mazda creative work. Mazda ended a 13-year relationship with Doner -- creator of the "zoom-zoom" slogan.

Davis says consumer-facing marketing spending for Mazda's fiscal year ending March 31, 2012, is up 19% from the previous year. Spending is expected to grow another 9% the following year, Davis says.

In calendar year 2010, Mazda spent $198 million in the United States, according to Kantar Media via Advertising Age. That represents a 29.8% increase over 2009, when Mazda spent $152 million. Advertising Age, like Automotive News, is published by Crain Communications.

The increased spending coincides with a more refined message: Mazda's vehicles are fuel efficient but still fun to drive.

In reference to a recent commercial for the Mazda3, Davis says combining performance and efficiency can work for Mazda. The car, he says, doesn't use hard tires, smaller fuel tanks and other piecemeal tweaks that sacrifice performance for efficiency in some cars.

"The 40 mpg message on the Mazda3 is great because I think we can clearly say that our 40 is better than their 40," Davis said.

Wave of launches


The Takeri concept strongly hints at the upcoming redesign of the Mazda6.

Next spring's launch of the CX-5 compact crossover kicks off a wave of major updates to some of Mazda's highest volume vehicles.

A redesigned Mazda6 is expected by the end of 2012, followed by redesigns of the Mazda3, MX-5 Miata and CX-9 in 2013.

The redesigned products will ride on new lightweight platforms with new gasoline and diesel powertrains that boost power and fuel economy, a system that Mazda markets as its Skyactiv technologies. Mazda also plans to add stop-start, regenerative braking and hybrid technologies by 2016.

The product push is noteworthy: The vehicle platform and powertrains set for launch are the 1st to be developed solely by Mazda in decades.

Mazda currently uses platforms shared with Ford Motor Co. for most of its vehicles. But Mazda has no plans to share its new platforms and powertrain technologies for U.S. vehicles with Ford, which until 2008 held a controlling stake in Mazda Motor Corp. Ford has been selling down its Mazda stake since then.

The equity agreement and long-standing product alliance gave birth to platforms that the companies share today. But there were drawbacks.

For example, the shared compact car platform that underpinned the Mazda3 was very cost-effective, Takahisa Sori, Mazda's global r&d boss, said during an interview through an interpreter.

"But the problem with that was we could only use that with C cars," Sori said. "We couldn't use it for C/D cars or any deviating models."


Mazda now plans to use flexible architectures, developed in-house, which can be adjusted to underpin future generations of the Mazda3, Mazda6, CX-5 and even larger vehicles, Sori said.

"It might be that the cross-sectional areas will be slightly different and the gauges [of steel] will be different, but the basic principles will be the same," Sori said. "This can be deployed to all models."

The approach can cut development costs by 20 to 70% per vehicle, depending on the segment and the number of components that can be shared from other vehicles, Sori said.

Getting healthier

Major industry scorecards have placed Mazda near the bottom for much of the last decade. And O'Sullivan isn't shy about what the problems were.

"Not a lot of exclusive stores -- probably the worst in the industry; initial quality was not all that robust; residuals were low; incentive spending was high; and owner loyalty was 1 of the worst, if not the worst, in the industry," O'Sullivan said.

But the company has made strides in most areas. Mazda vehicles jumped from 2nd-worst in the 2005 Initial Quality Study to 5th-best in the 2011 study, according to J.D. Power and Associates. Mazda kept 37% of its customers within the brand last year compared with about 23% in 2005 -- the second-worst rate in the industry at the time.

A sign of growing dealer focus on Mazda: Half of Mazda's 640 dealerships are exclusive, compared with less than 25% in 2003.

But Mazda ranked No. 15 of 21 mass-market brands in Power's 2010 Sales Satisfaction Index Study. Mazda has consistently ranked near the bottom for most of the past decade but has improved every year since 2008.

O'Sullivan points to the improved scores as evidence that Mazda's U.S. business is fundamentally healthier and in a position to improve its U.S. sales and share. But O'Sullivan says that the company lacks grand aspirations a la Volkswagen AG to become a global volume leader.

"We're never going to be a big volume brand," O'Sullivan said. "It's not our objective."

You can reach Ryan Beene at [email protected].
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:52 AM
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It seems like just about every car CEO has some huge volume increase planned for the next few years. For Mazda I hope it works since they no longer have a partner to shoulder the development costs and it needs that volume to survive.
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Old 11-07-2011, 10:07 AM
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Red face Oh My

I must be tired bc I thought that the title of the thread was "Mazda: FUTURE (as in news)" & not "Furai". My bad.
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Old 11-07-2011, 10:37 AM
  #99  
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No worries...

Merged!
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Old 11-27-2011, 09:07 AM
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http://content.usatoday.com/communit...capacitators/1

Maybe there is an alternative to batteries when it comes to storing energy and saving gas in cars after all. Mazda is about to find out.

Engineers have talked about using capacitators instead of batteries for a while, but no automaker indicated it was ready to take the bold step. Now one has.

It's Mazda in Japan, which is annouced it has found a way to store eneergy from regenerative braking in a capacitator, instead of having to lug around heavy batteries, in a move that will save about 10% on gas. Mazda is calling it i-ELOOP and it will start showing up on vehicles next year.

Besides being lighter, capacitators, an electrical component that temporarily stores large volumes of electricity, can be charged and discharged rapidly and are resistant to deterioration through prolonged use.

The energy stored in Mazda's capacitators won't go into acceleration. Rather it will be used for electrical systems like climate control, audio and numerous others.

Regenerative braking systems are common on hybrids. They use an electric motor or alternator to generate electricity as the vehicle decelerates, thereby recovering a portion of the vehicle's kinetic energy. Regenerative braking systems in hybrid vehicles generally use a large electric motor and dedicated battery.

Here is how Mazda explains the details:

The i-ELOOP system will use new 12-25 volt variable voltage alternator, a low-resistance electric double layer capacitor and a DC/DC converter. 'i-ELOOP' starts to recover kinetic energy the moment the driver lifts off the accelerator pedal and the vehicle begins to decelerate. The variable voltage alternator generates electricity at up to 25V for maximum efficiency before sending it to the Electric Double Layer Capacitor (EDLC) for storage. The capacitor, which has been specially developed for use in a vehicle, can be fully charged in seconds. The DC/DC converter steps down the electricity from 25V to 12V before it is distributed directly to the vehicle's electrical components. The system also charges the vehicle battery as necessary.

The name 'i-ELOOP' is an adaptation of "Intelligent Energy Loop" and represents Mazda's intention to efficiently cycle energy in an intelligent way.
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Old 11-27-2011, 09:11 AM
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This sounds like the eAssist mild hybrid GM is using but getting a 10% mileage gain by just moving the electrical load to the capacitor seems a bit optimistic.
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Old 11-26-2012, 07:01 AM
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Lightbulb Upscale


Having languished for decades in a crowded field of mass-market nameplates, Mazda will reposition itself as a more premium brand, Mazda Motor Corp. CEO Takashi Yamanouchi said.

"The question is: In the global market, what is the significance of a player with a mere 2%?"
Yamanouchi told Automotive News last week. "It's something we frequently discuss internally. We came to the conclusion that if we make ordinary cars for the mass market, there is no reason for us to exist."

Yamanouchi, a soft-spoken former purchasing executive, wants to boost sales in Mazda's biggest, most important market by 43% to more than 400,000 U.S. units by the fiscal year that ends March 31, 2016. To get to that record level, Mazda will launch a flood of products over the next few years using an upscale brand image.

Internally, Mazda is calling its brand shift "Japan premium." That term will not be used in marketing.

But the strategy is to leverage Mazda's new technologies and styling to lift the company above its Japanese rivals and other mass-market brands.

Some Mazda insiders see the move as the only way Mazda -- a tiny, financially strapped brand with global sales of just 1.3 million units -- can survive.

The 3rd-generation Mazda6 mid-sized sedan, which hits U.S. showrooms in January, will lead the upswing in sales and brand identity.

At the car's launch in Japan last week, Hirotaka Kanazawa, Mazda's global r&d chief, used the term "Japan premium" for its brand positioning, comparing it with German luxury marques.

Mazda's products, exemplified by the redesigned Mazda6, will be packed with cutting-edge environmental and safety technologies and upscale interior materials.

The company's new lineup of Skyactiv technologies will underpin the shift. They encompass a range of chassis, platform and drivetrain systems that save fuel and boost performance.

The Mazda CX-5 compact crossover, which was launched in the United States in the spring, was the 1st vehicle completely remade using the Skyactiv blueprint. Next comes the Mazda6. By 2016, 80% of Mazda's lineup will employ the suite of Skyactiv features.

Mazda is betting the technologies will not only set it apart but enable it to charge more and protect residual values.

"This is a 1st step in going toward premium," Yamanouchi said. "It's about being a brand that has a strong bond with the customer."

Mazda also will stress a few key elements of its new lineup, including:
• Mazda's new kodo design language, which debuted in the CX-5 crossover. In Japanese, kodo means "soul of motion."

• More attention to customer service at dealerships.

• Active safety systems such as precrash warning technologies.

• Diesel drivetrains that are clean and powerful.

• Minimized incentives and maximized residual values.
"That's how we aim to be like a premium," Yamanouchi said. "Broadly speaking, it is not to rely on discounts but to have consumers appreciate the value of the product."

Kanazawa said: "With each and every feature and function, we want customers to experience" something "that is well-designed and easy to use."

Mazda is banking on a bevy of products, including redesigns of the CX-9 crossover and Mazda3 sedan. Also coming is a new roadster jointly developed with Alfa Romeo to replace the MX-5 Miata.

The emphasis is on North American production and U.S. sales. A year ago, Yamanouchi said Mazda was looking at reducing the 400,000 target for fiscal 2016. He has since revised his target upward.

"At least 400,000 units," Yamanouchi said of the new U.S. sales goal. "It's a significant jump from current levels."

Mazda is forecasting 280,000 units for the current fiscal year that ends March 31. U.S. sales climbed 9% to 228,104 units through October, but the market rose 14%.

A $500 million factory in Mexico will start producing vehicles in early 2014 and will ensure that Mazda has plenty of local capacity to support the increase without being hit by the exchange rate losses it faces from importing cars from Japan. The plant's capacity, for 140,000 Mazda2 small cars and Mazda3s, will be on top of what is already coming out of Japan -- not a substitute for it, Yamanouchi said.

"In the near future, I think we can make an announcement that increases the capacity of that plant even further," he said.

Brand appeal is critical to the successful repositioning.

Yamanouchi points to Mazda's ranking in Consumer Reports' predicted-reliability study as 1 sign that the brand's value is making a difference with consumers. For the 2nd straight year, it ranked No. 4 of 28 brands -- this time behind Scion, Toyota and Lexus.

Mazda wants dealers to up their game for a share of the spoils.

Despite the predicted 43 percent boom in U.S. sales, Mazda doesn't want more U.S. dealers. The goal: Fatten existing dealers' earnings so they will invest more in their stores.

Said Yamanouchi: "We don't intend to increase the number of stores."
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Old 11-26-2012, 07:43 AM
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This sounds like the Tier 1 talk from Acura not too long ago. We can't compete with mass market so we'll try to go upmarket instead. Not sure how well that'll work for them.
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Old 11-26-2012, 10:47 AM
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I don't think it is going to end well for them. Mazda makes good cars in a very competitive market. Zoom Zoom is over ... They need to get bodies into their showrooms.
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Old 11-26-2012, 10:51 AM
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The Koreans came, wanted to be Toyota +.......they achieved that and so much more.

Kia and Hyundai became leaders in many segments.

Small Japanese player Mazda never saw it coming.

Bye-bye, Mazda
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Old 08-18-2014, 01:36 PM
  #106  
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Post Mazda working on diesel-electric hybrid system

From here: http://www.worldcarfans.com/11408187...ystem---report

Mazda could soon become the first Japanese manufacturer to offer diesel-electric hybrids in Asia and Europe.

The Yomiuri Shimbun reports the company could start selling such hybrids as early as 2016. The source explains a diesel-fueled engine will be used as the main drive source while a small electric motor will play a supporting role.

There is no information on which will be the first model to receive the hybrid system, but this will likely be the Mazda3, also known in Japan as the Mazda Axela. The magazine says the diesel hybrid model will be up to 30 percent more fuel efficient than a standard diesel variant, translating to a combined consumption of around 2.5 liters/100 km (94 mpg).

Currently, Mazda3 is available as a petrol-hybrid model that features a SKYACTIV-G 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, an electric motor and a continuously variable transmission. This setup enables the model to return up to 3.2 liters/100 km (73.5 mpg).
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Old 11-11-2014, 12:18 PM
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Post No Rotary Engine

From here: Mazda CEO Rules Out Rotary-Powered Sports Car

There have been numerous reports and official hints that Mazda could launch a rotary-powered sports car to either celebrate the 50th anniversary of its first rotary-powered model in 2017 or its own centenary in 2020. Now, the automaker’s CEO has put an end to the speculation.

Speaking with Automotive News (subscription required), Mazda CEO Masamichi Kogai said he has no plans to launch a new rotary-powered sports car, quashing any hopes of a revival of the RX-7 or launch of a new RX-9 flagship.

"We don't have that kind of vehicle in our future product plan," Kogai replied when asked about a new RX. "If you increase the number of segments, then the resources we can allocate to each will decline and that will prevent us from developing truly good products."

Instead, Mazda will focus on shoring up its finances and investing its limited resources on improving its fuel-saving Skyactiv technologies as well as launching models in higher volume segments.

Mazda has just launched new versions of its 2 subcompact and MX-5 sports car, and at next week’s 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show it’s set to introduce a new CX-3 subcompact crossover as well as updated versions of its CX-5 and 6 models. Beyond these, Mazda will also have to renew its 5 and CX-9 models, which are yet to receive the Skyactiv treatment.

Mazda will also have to invest heavily in much more fuel-efficient technologies or risk falling behind rivals, which have much bigger R&D budgets. Kogai revealed that the automaker is working on next-generation Skyactiv technology that could debut around the end of the decade. Dubbed Skyactiv 2, engineers are targeting economy gains of around 30 percent compared with current levels. One area of focus is said to be sparkless ignition tech for gasoline engines, otherwise known as homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI).
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Old 04-04-2016, 04:44 PM
  #108  
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Post Patent filing shows Mazda is working on a rotary engine

From here: Patent filing shows Mazda is working on a rotary engine

The Wankel rotary engine has its issues, most notably with too many emissions, substandard fuel economy, and reliability. In fact, we just posted a video that explains these problems.

But a rotary engine is also fun. It spins up quickly, offers good power for small displacements, and its light weight makes for great front/rear weight balance.

If one automaker is associated with the Wankel, it's Mazda, even though the Japanese brand didn't develop it originally.

Last fall at the Tokyo Motor Show, Mazda unveiled the RX-Vision concept, a design study that could foreshadow Mazda's next RX sports car. In Tokyo, Mazda said a production version of the RX-Vision would have rotary power, probably turbocharged. Mazda calls it SkyActiv-R, and says that the SkyActiv moniker represents the company's resolve in solving issues with rotaries.

Now, it appears that Mazda really is working on a rotary engine, as the folks at Auto Evolution have uncovered a patent application for a rotary engine. The U.S. patent application is number 2016/0084158. Titled “Rotary Piston Engine Mounted on Vehicle,” Mazda submitted it last year and the U.S. Patent Office published it on March 24.

The patent drawings show how Mazda may be dealing with some of the rotary's issues. Auto Evolution points out that Mazda is flipping the engine over, putting the intake at the bottom and the exhaust at the top. The turbo is mounted on the exhaust outlet, giving the exhaust gases a very short trip to the turbo. That should improve performance, especially throttle response. As Motor Trend notes in its story on the subject, moving the exhaust outlet to that position is similar to V-8 engines with a "hot inside V" that features the turbos mounted within the engine's V.

Other stories have suggested that Mazda may electrify the Wankel, which would certainly be a way to make it more efficient. No matter how it returns, we want to drive it, especially if it's turbocharged and wrapped in the sensuous skin of the RX-Vision concept.
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Old 04-07-2016, 02:53 PM
  #109  
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Just do it, Mazda. Turn the world upside down and put a rotary in an MX-5 already.
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Old 04-08-2016, 03:31 AM
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Originally Posted by biker View Post
It seems like just about every car CEO has some huge volume increase planned for the next few years. For Mazda I hope it works since they no longer have a partner to shoulder the development costs and it needs that volume to survive.
That 400K units per year that the CEO wanted in 2010 didn't even come close - sales went up to better than in 20 years but the 2014 total was only 306K and only slightly better last year.
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Costco View Post
Just do it, Mazda. Turn the world upside down and put a rotary in an MX-5 already.
Highly doubt we'll ever see a production Rotary Miata. As amazing as I'm sure it would be.
More likely is the revival of the RX-_.
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Old 04-12-2016, 10:37 AM
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I don't know why they praise that engine so much. I have only driven RX8 on the street and I wasn't liking it. I don't know how the turbo ones feel like, but NA was dumb. Rev to the moon to get going at all, and reliability is crap and expensive to fix since no one knows how to work on them.
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Old 04-12-2016, 01:18 PM
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^
I've only ever driven a couple non-turbo FC/FD and 1 RX8. Fun cars, well sorted handling (the FC Convertible was a self-drifting machine).

Very few moving parts (comparatively) & high revving. Loved screaming the RX8 through Bakersfield, CA without getting into trouble.

One of the comparisons (RX8 criticisms) I read years ago about the RX put it like this: RX7 (assuming they meant turbo) competed with Porsches, RX8 with Mustangs.
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Old 04-12-2016, 02:59 PM
  #114  
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Bad on gas, engines have to use oil, bad on emissions, and they wear out fast.

Rotary motors are the bomb for racing...but not a good idea for a street car.
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Old 04-14-2016, 12:59 PM
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Rotarys are cool, I think it would be neat for them to build a halo car with a 4 rotor and e assist, something really insane. I am glad they are bringing back the RX7 platform, but I wonder if the new rotary motor will be able to keep up with the current sports cars, its gonna need 400-500 hp probably
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Old 03-23-2017, 12:39 PM
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Mazda Still Working on Wankel Engines, But Not Like You'd Hoped Car and Driver

"Mazda has repeatedly teased—or tortured—Wankel-engine fans with the possibility of a multirotor sports car and then retracted that possibility. Now, new patent applications show the brand is once again working on the rotary, but in an application that’s likely to dash the hopes of the engine’s fans: using its iconic engine as an onboard generator, rather than the free-revving heart of a sports car."

Good-bye, RX-9....

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Old 03-26-2017, 07:51 AM
  #117  
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Vaporware.
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Old 08-09-2017, 03:01 AM
  #118  
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Mazda compression ignition engine breakthrough promises cars with HCCI tech in 2019

Mazda announces major breakthrough in compression ignition engine tech

August 8, 2017

A homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) gasoline engine has been something of a holy grail for internal combustion engineers for decades, promising the fuel economy of diesel engines but without the soot or nitrogen oxide emissions. This concept essentially achieves internal combustion through compression alone, without the need for sparkplugs, but reliable operation of these engines has eluded automakers. Until now.

Mazda announced this week that it has solved the technical hurdles associated with this technology and that it plans to offer this type of engine, dubbed SKYACTIV-X, in its cars in the near future.

"A proprietary combustion method called Spark Controlled Compression Ignition overcomes two issues that had impeded commercialization of compression ignition gasoline engines: maximizing the zone in which compression ignition is possible and achieving a seamless transition between compression ignition and spark ignition," the automaker said in a statement.

Mazda's design will still use spark plugs to achieve ignition under certain conditions such as low temperatures, but it has indicated that all other issues pertaining to this design have been successfully solved, with the company touting the "super lean burn" characteristics of this new powerplant. The engine is expected to be 20 to 30 percent more efficient than its current SKYACTIV-G family of engines, and an impressive 35 to 45 percent more efficient than the automaker's own 2008 engine with the same displacement. Mazda's compression gasoline engine is promised to deliver 10 to 30 percent greater torque numbers than SKYACTIV-G engines, with Mazda planning to pair the new design with a supercharger. In addition, Mazda says that this new type of of engine will permit much more latitude in selecting gear ratios, which will benefit fuel economy.

How soon will we see this new design in Mazda cars at the dealership? SKYACTIV-X engines are promised to appear in production models in 2019, but the automaker has not indicated in which models we'll see these engines first. The automaker also has not said if its HCCI engines will replace the current crop of SKYACTIV-G engines entirely or if Mazda will opt for a slow rollout of this technology.

Mazda cautions that the engine is still under development and that the boosts in efficiency it has cited are rough estimates, but it maintains that its engineers have achieved a real breakthrough, one that points the way to the future of internal combustion engines at a time when many automakers are beginning to plan for an electric future.
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:34 AM
  #119  
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Interesting, wonder what the CR is on these. I know the SA-G engines are higher than average CR.
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Old 08-09-2017, 06:24 PM
  #120  
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Probably similar to the SA-D engines, though that uses a turbo and this a supercharger, which is interesting itself as that usually robs more power than a turbo.
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