Showroom visitors in June continued carrying Mazda in a positive sales direction, even as those same buyers continue to shy away from the brand’s car portfolio. Hold on — that’s not necessarily correct. On a year-to-date basis, all of Mazda’s passenger cars sit in the red, but the sensuously styled Mazda 6 sedan, fresh from yet another, um, refresh (this one designed to push the model upmarket a bit) barely qualifies. Since the massaged 2018 model went on sale in April, year-over-year sales increases in that month, May, and June mean the model now posts only a 0.9 percent YTD sales decrease. Almost back in the black, for this year, anyways. Despite it outward appearance staying nearly the same, the 2018 refresh brought a long-awaited turbocharged engine to the Mazda 6 line. As well, there’s upgraded powerplants destined for the two remaining cars in Mazda’s barn. Nothing sweetens the pot like extra power. Perhaps the addition of an … [Read more...] about Mazda’s New Engines Will Test Whether Buyers Can Still Stomach a ‘Car’
You might be able to find one of these things rotting away in your neighbor’s barn, but that doesn’t mean that the original Mazda RX-7 isn’t a true, glorious, flawed masterpiece the likes of which the car world rarely sees. In light of Mazda’s return to RX-named rotary cars (even in the form of the RX-Vision concept) it’s a good time to reflect on the original RX-7. You don’t see these cars on the street anymore. They were too cheap, too common, too weird to make their way into early collector car status before most of them got wrapped around telephone poles, or consigned to rust heap junkyards. Go to any autocross, rallycross, or budget road racing event, though, and you’ll still reliably find these Mazda sports cars. Simply follow your ears to the most unbelievably loud wail coming from the slowest car on the course and there one will be, muffler broken, rotary engine bleating away. It’s that rotary engine that makes the RX-7 memorable, … [Read more...] about The Original Mazda RX-7 Is A Goddamn Masterpiece
Roughly twice as successful north of the border as in the United States, the critically acclaimed Mazda brand has been struggling for years to make an American impact worthy of its credentials. Fun-to-drive, driver-centric, dynamic cars? Mazda’s got’em. In fact, across the entire Mazda lineup, the brand’s vehicles are arguably worthy of class-leading honors, at least in terms of on-road behaviour. But for too long, Mazda’s footprint in the United States was piddling, inconsequential, and downright immaterial. Out of the recession, the growth experienced by the U.S. light vehicle market at large was met with more modest Mazda improvements. U.S. auto sales jumped 51 percent between 2010 and 2016, a record year for the U.S. auto industry. But Mazda sales rose only 30 percent during the same period, as the brand’s market share fell from a too-low 2.0% in 2010 to an even lower 1.7% in 2016. The goal may seem modest, but Mazda’s North American boss, … [Read more...] about Mazda USA Hits The “Good” 2 Percent Market Share In 2018 Q1, But How?
It looks like Alabama has won out over North Carolina in the battle to secure a massive, $1.6 billion joint assembly plant. The factory, a partnership between Toyota and Mazda (which, as of last summer, Toyota owns a 5 percent stake in), is reportedly headed to Huntsville, Alabama, and should give the smaller automaker the American capacity it needs to boost crossover sales.Sources tell Reuters that company officials and government representatives will make an announcement today at the future factory site. Not only does the new plant herald lots of new jobs, it also means a new model.The Alabama site makes sense for both automakers, as Toyota already has an engine plant in the area, and the Deep South locale keeps both companies relatively safe from UAW organization. A union attempt to break into the Southern auto workforce at Nissan’s Mississippi plant last year met with defeat.The plant, said to be located at the Huntsville Mega Site, would bring 4,000 jobs to the region, with … [Read more...] about Joint Toyota-Mazda Assembly Plant Headed to Alabama: Report
Alabama will be the site of a new $1.6 billion Toyota and Mazda auto plant, a victory for President Donald Trump who had prodded manufacturers to build new U.S. facilities and threatened tariffs on foreign production, sources said on Tuesday.The plant, which will employ up to 4,000 people and produce about 300,000 vehicles a year, will be located in Huntsville, Ala., and is a boon for the state, where Toyota has a large engine plant and an existing network of automotive suppliers.A formal announcement by company and state officials is expected on Wednesday in Montgomery, sources briefed on the matter said.The new plant — in a state Trump won by 28 points in 2016 — could be a political boost to the Republican president, who has urged automakers to build plants in the United States and add jobs. The companies said they expect the plant to open in 2021.Trump tweeted in March he wanted "new plants to be built here for cars sold here." The White House did not immediately comment … [Read more...] about Toyota, Mazda $1.6 billion plant goes to Alabama, sources say