Partnership With Other Automobile Makers
Mazda has partnered with other automakers over the years, the most notable of which was Ford and now, Toyota.
Mazda's partnership with the American auto giant is one of the most notable landmarks in the history and development of the company and its products. Lasting 41 years from 1974 to 2015, the partnership saw Ford owning up to 33.4% of Mazda's stock in 1995. The partnership, which originally started due to Mazda's financial issues, saw the two automakers exchange ideas and engage in joint ventures throughout the four decades of their relationship. Recent years saw Ford gradually divest its stake in Mazda as the two companies sever production and developmental ties, until September 2015 when Ford sold the last of its shares in Mazda.
After its partnership with Ford fizzled out, Mazda partnered with the fellow Japanese automaker, Toyota, to form a long-term partnership that would see the two companies exchange technology. Mazda's SkyActiv gasoline and diesel technology will be exchanged for Toyota's hydrogen fuel cell systems.
Mazda cars are known for their nimbleness and fuel economy, which has allowed the brand to compete with rivals over the years. Mazda’s vehicles lineup includes several sedans, SUVs, trucks, minivans and sport cars.
Other Endeavours of Mazda
While the focus of the company is still rooted in the automobile industry, Mazda has ventured into other industries related and unrelated to its primary industry. Here are some of the company’s other activities.
Drive Towards A Greener Operation
As the trends in the industry gradually shift towards cars with low emission, automakers race to catch up to the demands of the market and Mazda is not left behind. The Japanese automaker has been conducting research in hydrogen-powered vehicles for several years. The result of this was the Mazda Premacy Hydrogen RE Hybrid which was a hybrid version of its compact car, Premacy. The hybrid was made with rotary engines that can run on hydrogen or gasoline.
Mazda’s partnership with Toyota was also geared towards the production of more environment-friendly vehicles.
Not just in the reduction of cars’ carbon emission like every other automaker, Mazda’s actions towards sustainability also includes using renewable materials and waste products in the production of its cars. This includes the use of materials such as plastic and milk to make the consoles and seats of its Mazda5 model launched at Ecolnnovasia 2008 at Queen Sirikit National Convention Center in Bangkok, Thailand.
The SkyActiv Technology is a range of technologies used in new Mazda vehicles such as Mazda2/Demio, Mazda3/Axela, Mazda6/Atenza and the CX-5. These technologies allow for fuel economy that is almost as efficient as that of a hybrid car.
Mazda sponsors several sport events and teams both in Japan and abroad. Mazda’s events include Hiroshima International Peace Marathon, Hiroshima Prefectural Ekiden Race, Australian Rugby Championship, Laguna Seca racing course, among others.
Teams and athletes sponsored by Mazda include hometown teams Sanfrecce Hiroshima and Hiroshima Toyo Carp and foreign teams such as the North Melbourne Football Club, ACF Fiorentina, Nakhon Ratchasima, Western New York Flash and the Club Deportivo Universidad Catolica.
Mazda is also very active in motorsports.