In order to follow the trend in hybrids and other environmentally friendly vehicles, it appears that Mazda will devote a larger proportion of R&D funding to the development of these vehicles.
According to the Nikkei business daily, Mazda will raise the ratio from just above 20 percent in fiscal 2010 to about 40 percent in fiscal 2015.
Mazda spend 100 billion yen for group R&D in the current fiscal year, with 15 billion more that in the 2009 fiscal year. More than 20 percent from this sum went toward developing green cars.
By 2015 fiscal year, Mazda is expected to spend an average of 100 billion yen on R&D, but is also planning to raise these numbers to develop more eco-friendly vehicles.
And this is not all, as Mazda will improve energy efficiency for gasoline-powered vehicles such as SUV with a new engine which will be with 10 percent more fuel-efficient than the current more.
The bad news is that these plans will take time, and Mazda will be selling a hybrid as early as 2013, which means that Toyota will still be the leader in hybrid vehicles as the Japanese manufacturer introduced the Prius hybrid on the market back in 1997. [via autonews - sub. required]