Mazda CEO Takashi Yamanouchi said that the automaker aims to double its annual sales in the U.S. in only four years. Mazda plans to move the brand further upmarket and to bring in a new 2.2-liter diesel to the U.S. market. When interviewed by Automotive News, Yamanouchi said that “if we make ordinary cars for the mass market, there is no reason for us to exist.”
Rather, what Mazda will do is to go up to a niche that’s regarded as “Japan premium” that would place Mazda in the same position as Saab, which was to be higher than mass market but not yet a full-fledged luxury brand. Mazda plans to begin with 2014 Mazda 6 sedan that’s set to debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
Mazda seeks to overtake its present rivals by leveraging its stylish designs and its new in-car and powertrain technologies. Mazda will also put on display its twin-turbocharged 2.2-liter Skyactiv clean-diesel I-4 for the North American market at the L.A. show. This is actually the first time in a long period that Mazda has offered an oil-burning engine in the region.
Mazda thinks that the diesel option will help align it better with premium diesel options from Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Audi and less with Toyota and Honda, which are focused on hybrids.
The European-spec CX-5 is equipped with a diesel engine that delivers 173 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. The official U.S. figures are likely to be released later in the week. Mazda has been concentrating on the new technologies and more stylish designs. At the same time, it is improving the customer service at its dealerships to help provide a premium feel to the brand experience.
When Mazda decided to become part of the compact crossover SUV class, a rather competitive segment, it knew that it had to come out with a model that could offer more than simply looking good. Mainly, it needed to have the driving passion, as well as the level of emotion, that the brand is well-known for. To make this possible, Mazda made sure that the new CX-5 would be the brand’s first ever production model to have the design theme known as “KODO - Soul of Motion.”
This motif takes inspiration from the power and beauty that nature offers but combines this with the principle of motion. Through this theme, the CX-5 is able to get a good mix when it comes to performance and style. In general, the spirit of the KODO is based on how animals move and this is why it is able to reveal agility, emotion, and vitality. For the CX-5, the design team focused on the fastest land animal on the planet, the cheetah.
The designers looked into how the cheetah was able to use its whole body similar to a spring, putting all energy into moving with both grace and dexterity. Because of how attractive this is, the design team was able to bring how this SUV would look to a whole new level and this was with the KODO. One result is that the CX-5 is able to reveal functionality and sturdiness through a classy exterior.
It also shows a graceful sense of motion as if to anticipate the possibility of a thrilling ride. While this may be the first time KODO was used in a production model, it was initially presented with the 4-door sports coupe concept known as the Mazda Shinari in 2010.
After that, Mazda put it this time on a compact crossover SUV concept called as the Mazda Minagi. The latter is the same concept that the CX-5 is based upon. Through the CX-5, Mazda believes that the KODO will introduce a design that will begin a new generation for the brand. These would be models that show more force, run faster, and have more soul when it comes to motion.