Posts Tagged ‘japan’

Anti-Japan protests in China cause Honda, Mazda, Nissan to suspend production

Published by Mazda Blogs on September 17th, 2012

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Reuters is reporting That Honda, Mazda and Nissan have been forced to stop production in China after a series of anti-Japan protests erupted over a territorial dispute between the two countries. The stoppage will see a total of four Honda plants go dark for two days, thanks in part to the fact that local dealers have been under attack and can’t receive shipments. Mazda, meanwhile, plans to close its facility in Nanjing for a total of four days, starting on Tuesday. The report sites Luo Lei, the deputy secretary general of the China Automobile Dealers Association, as saying many dealerships have shut down after a few were vandalized. One dealership saw a Honda Civic set on fire in Shanghai.

Lei also said buyers are boycotting Japanese goods, especially cars, over safety concerns.

Honda and Mazda aren’t alone, either. Toyota and Panasonic both reported fire damage at their facilities, and one Toyota dealership was set ablaze as well. Protesters overturned cars and smashed windshields in some cities as well, as the September 18 anniversary of the Manchurian Incident approaches. The date marks the anniversary of Japan’s invasion into northeastern China in 1931.

Anti-Japan protests in China cause Honda, Mazda, Nissan to suspend production originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 17 Sep 2012 16:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Alfa Romeo’s version of Mazda MX-5 Miata to be costlier, offer own engines

Published by Mazda Blogs on September 4th, 2012

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Geneva 2010: Alfa Romeo 2uettottanta concept by Pininfarina - front three-quarter view

If this comes to pass, it shouldn’t be a surprise in the least, but What Car? is reporting that the Alfa Romeo version of the roadster it is co-developing with Mazda will be more expensive than the MX-5 Miata upon which it is based. Alfa’s market perception alone would seem to encourage that scenario, but it sounds like intentionally avoiding competition is also be at play, as Mazda’s CEO has told the magazine that “the two cars were unlikely to be priced or positioned to compete against each other.”

The Miata is predicted to bow as early as year (we’re hearing it will likely be later), the Alfa version in 2015. Although both are expected to be built at Mazda’s plant in Hiroshima, Japan the roadsters will get engines from their respective parent companies. The MX-5 is speculated to get its motivation from a 1.3-liter, 200-horsepower four-cylinder. But if Alfa wanted to charge a little more for a MultiAir-engined, 300-horsepower production version of the Pininfarina-penned 2uettottanta concept showed off at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show… well, we’d have nothing bad to say about it.

Alfa Romeo’s version of Mazda MX-5 Miata to be costlier, offer own engines originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 04 Sep 2012 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda6 performance and coupe models mooted, all-wheel drive under consideration too

Published by Mazda Blogs on August 30th, 2012

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2014 Mazda6 - front three-quarter view

AutoExpress reports Mazda is already looking at ways to give the company’s 2014 Mazda6 a little more heat. The company isn’t throwing out too many details at the moment beyond saying executives are looking at the possibility of creating a spiritual successor to the Mazdaspeed6. While speaking with the publication, Hiroshi Kajiyama, program manager for the Mazda6, admits a performance version has lots of potential, and that such a machine would be helpful for the brand. If a hotter four-door hits the market, it will likely be lighter than its common sibling with around 100 fewer pounds to lug around. It may also bow with a turbocharged version of the currently-available diesel mill.

Meanwhile, Autocar reports the new Mazda6 may spawn a two-door variant as well. Akira Tamatani, Mazda chief designer, said he would love to make such a vehicle, though no solid decision has been made one way or the other. What else does Mazda have planned for its newest model? Developers are sweating over the possible addition of an all-wheel drive system to help the machine better compete in foul-weather markets.

Mazda6 performance and coupe models mooted, all-wheel drive under consideration too originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 29 Aug 2012 17:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2014 Mazda6 wagon rolls up on video

Published by Mazda Blogs on August 6th, 2012

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Mazda taped the ceremony commemorating production of the 2014 Mazda6 at its Hofu No. 2 plant in Japan, and now we have it. There are a few dark glimpses of the Euro-spec Mazda6 wagon as a couple of them roll out and do loops for the factory workers, but the cameras don’t spend a lot of time on the car. A more well-lit demonstration will likely be seen at the Moscow Motor Show later this month.

The 14-minute video is in Japanese, so once you’re finished watching the car you can enjoy the executive speeches, and it ends with a cheer by the workers. Check it out below.

Continue reading 2014 Mazda6 wagon rolls up on video

2014 Mazda6 wagon rolls up on video originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 06 Aug 2012 14:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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First official Mazda6 wagon pic revealed as plant comes online

Published by Mazda Blogs on August 2nd, 2012

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2013 Mazda6 production commencement ceremony

Mazda has officially kicked off production of the 2014 Mazda6 at its Hofu No. 2 plant in Japan’s Yamaguchi prefecture. The car in the photo above is a European-spec Mazda6 wagon, equipped with the automaker’s 2.0-liter Skyactiv-G gasoline inline-four, and it’s the first undisguised look we have at the rakish estate.

The 2014 Mazda6 will be seen for the first time at the Moscow Motor Show in August, and the rest of the world will get their first glimpse at market-specific models during September’s Paris Motor Show festivities. The third-generation Mazda6 will go on sale in Europe and Japan before the end of the year, while North American cars will start hitting dealerships sometime in early 2013.

Mazda plans to produce approximately 120,000 units of the Mazda6 annually at Hofu. 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of Mazda6 production there, with the original car (the official 626 replacement) first rolling off the line in 2002.

To review, Mazda will also offer the new mid-sizer with its Skyactiv-D diesel engine in other markets (and possibly the U.S.), and the car will be the first to use the automaker’s new i-ELOOP regenerative braking technology. We’ll have all the official details later this month.

Continue reading First official Mazda6 wagon pic revealed as plant comes online

First official Mazda6 wagon pic revealed as plant comes online originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 02 Aug 2012 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Facelifted 2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata leaked?

Published by Mazda Blogs on July 2nd, 2012

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 2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata

It looks as if the current generation Mazda MX-5 Miata will stay on for a while longer. (Note: We are not complaining.) Images clipped from a Japanese brochure show a newly facelifted version of the NC platform, designated the NC3.

The roadster wears an all-new front fascia, complete with a five-point grille opening and a pair of redesigned fog lamp housings to to either side. The fascia looks more than a bit like the one found on the Mazda Spyder Concept we all know and love, and softens the current car’s always-happy-to-see-you grin.

Word has it the 2013 MX-5 Miata will come with a new pedestrian-safe hood designed to pop up in the event of a collision. Step indoors, and the interior boasts new blacked-out gauges, as well as a new dash cover. It’s unclear whether there are any mechanical changes on hand, though we do know the NC3 will bow with a new range of paint color and wheel options.

Facelifted 2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata leaked? originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 02 Jul 2012 16:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mazda Skyactiv-D diesel to power Dempsey Racing LMP2 challenger at Le Mans

Published by Mazda Blogs on June 18th, 2012

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Mazda prototype race car

The Grand AM GX class isn’t the only place where Mazda will be running its 2.2-liter turbocharged Skyactiv-D four-cylinder diesel next year: it will power the LMP2 contender fielded by Dempsey Racing, a team co-owned by actor Patrick Dempsey. Mazda will also provide the engine to other teams running in the class at Le Mans, in the American Le Mans Series and the World Endurance Championship.

Mazda raced the 24 Hours of Le Mans for 18 years before winning in 1991, then took its rotary-powered 787B out of the running. Mazda was been providing its four-cylinder MZR engines for the past decade for teams like OAK Racing Pescarolo, but ceased development on those in 2011. The Skyactiv-D will replace the MZR series, and along with the non-running Lola-built LMP2 chassis (pictured) showed off at this year’s Le Mans, is meant to mark Mazda’s full-bodied return Le Mans after 22 years.

The engines are being developed by Mazda in Japan and the U.S. as well as SpeedSource Engineering in Florida. Track testing should commence later this year, and it’s frankly good to see Mazda making such moves in spite of its financial battles. Scroll down for a press release with more details.

Continue reading Mazda Skyactiv-D diesel to power Dempsey Racing LMP2 challenger at Le Mans

Mazda Skyactiv-D diesel to power Dempsey Racing LMP2 challenger at Le Mans originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 18 Jun 2012 10:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Toyota CEO lists favorite cars from other automakers

Published by Mazda Blogs on May 21st, 2012

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During a meeting of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, Toyota president Akio Toyoda offered a “Chapeau!” to his fellow CEOs by listing his favorite cars from other makers. He listed just one vehicle from five makers represented on the board, in alphabetical order: the Honda NSX, Isuzu Bellett, Mazda Cosmo, Mitsubishi Pajero (our Montero) and Nissan Skyline.

Toyoda didn’t give his reasons for choosing these car beyond each being “memorable.” Even so, going through the list any car enthusiast knows the Honda (Acura in the States) NSX needs no introduction nor explanation. The Mitsubishi Pajero is probably as well known for it’s off-road excellence as it is for its name change in Spanish-speaking lands due to the word “pajero” – all the more intriguing when it’s apparently named after an Argentine cat, Leopardus pajeros. And although the “Skyline” moniker was made famous overseas by the GT-R, the Nissan Skyline that Toyoda references has a long history and is our Infiniti G.

The Mazda Cosmo (pictured) was an Italian-esque little coupe produced from 1967 to 1995, the first series production vehicle with a two-rotor rotary engine. The Isuzu Bellett was that firm’s in-house replacement for the English Hillmans it was rebranding, the first Japanese car to get GT badging (it would also get a GT-R version), and it would cover just about every segment with sedan, coupe, station wagon and pickup truck variants.

Toyota CEO lists favorite cars from other automakers originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 21 May 2012 17:35:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Troubled Mazda looking to raise $2B in shares, fund Mexico plant

Published by Mazda Blogs on February 22nd, 2012

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Mazda emblem

Mazda once again finds itself in dire financial straits after warning its investors to expect a loss in 2011 of 100 billion yen ($1.3 billion). In an effort to keep itself afloat, the Japanese automaker is rumored to be considering a new issue of as many as 690 million shares, which would raise about 100 billion yen while diluting current share value by a massive 38.7 percent.

In addition, Mazda is thought to be seeking loans of 70 billion yen from a number of Japanese banks. A good portion of these funds are necessary to bolster Mazda’s overseas production facilities. At present, 70 percent of all its vehicles are produced in Japan and 90 percent of those are exported. In order to combat the high value of the yen, Mazda is seeking to renovate a production site in Thailand and build a new one on Mexico.

Only time will tell if Mazda, Japan’s fifth-largest automaker, is able to remain an independent company or if it will be forced to partner up with a larger partner, as it once had with Ford.

Troubled Mazda looking to raise $2B in shares, fund Mexico plant originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 Feb 2012 17:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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After another bad year, Mazda hunting for partners, could license Skyactiv

Published by Mazda Blogs on February 14th, 2012

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Mazda emblem

Mazda builds and exports more vehicles from Japan by percentage of total volume than any other automaker, which means it has been hit harder than most by the strength of the Japanese yen. Compounding matters further, between 2008 and 2010, Ford reduced its stake in Mazda from a controlling 33-percent share to less than four percent, meaning the automaker doesn’t have any extra-deep pockets to help bridge the financial gap until profits improve and a North American factory located in Mexico is completed.

The results of this perfect financial storm have been predictable: Mazda posted a net loss in 2011 of about $1.29 billion, marking the fourth consecutive year of red ink and the largest loss since 2001. That’s all very bad news for any automaker, but especially so for one as small and independent as Mazda. As such, it’s no surprise that Mazda CEO Takashi Yamanouchi has said that his company is “actively” seeking partners and that “every option” is being considered.

Naturally, considering “every option” includes the potential of licensing its lightweight and efficient Skyactiv fuel-saving technology to other automakers. In any case, after already losing the rotary (for now, at least) the thought of an automotive world without the MX-5 makes us shudder. Here’s hoping Mazda regains its financial footing before anything drastic happens.

After another bad year, Mazda hunting for partners, could license Skyactiv originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 14 Feb 2012 09:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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