Just How Good Is It For Mazda? Rather, But From a Low Base.

We take a look at a press release from Mazda and see if it’s interesting. Here are the best bits paraphrased and commented upon.

A popular Mazda, the 2105 CX-5: www.omniauto.it
A popular Mazda, the 2105 CX-5: http://www.omniauto.it

Mazda has increased unit sales by 29% year-on-year and has grown for 12 consecutive quarters. Between July and last month, Mazda sold nearly 60,000 vehicles which explains why there are so many 3’s roaming around my neck of the woods, though no new 1’s have been sighted. The overall market has grown by 10.6% so Mazda have done better than the average. I suppose this might be from a smaller base but creditable nonetheless. The net effect of all this stupendous growth is to claim a market share of 1.7%. Nissan have 4% and Toyota 4.2%.

Where did Mazda sell all these extra cars? The Dutch are the leaders here, with sales doubling (from a low base). According to the PR Turkey is a part of Europe and so contributes to Mazda’s European sales.  The Portugese bought 68%. Other countries such as Spain, Sweden and Italy showed 50% gains. The smallest gains were in Germany and the UK (but from a larger base).

1978 Mazda 929. It´s a bit like a Ope Commodore: productioncars.com
1978 Mazda 929. It´s a bit like a Opel Commodore: productioncars.com

“What’s very encouraging is that we continue to make gains across geographies and across our new-generation model line-up,” says Mazda Europe Vice President Sales Martijn ten Brink. “Take our newest model. The fourth-generation MX-5 has been a positive surprise. We’ve even hiked production in Japan to meet European demand.” That last paragraph came direct from the PR. I like the use of the plural “geographies”.

The man is clearly not appraised of the difference between the word “region” and the word “geography” which about the nature of a region. Having a background in geography I can say there are not very violently competing interpretations of geography so there are not many geographies. Never mind.

The CX-5 is Mazda’s most popular model, not the 3 or the 6. That’s a surprise for me.

So that’s Mazda at the moment. If they do will, they will sell 200,000 vehicles in 2015.

What is a CX-5? It’s a small CUV, naturally. This is the hottest segment at the moment, I have read. To get this press release I needed to send in a proper e-mail address. My hotmail address would not do. I get a few of these a month. In contrast Renault send out several a week. At the moment they are telling us all about the Kadjar.

Author: richard herriott

I like anchovies. I dislike post-war town planning.

10 thoughts on “Just How Good Is It For Mazda? Rather, But From a Low Base.”

  1. Regarding the comparative number of press releases from Renault and Mazda, I am reminded of the phrase, “A lot of heat, but not a lot of light”.

    Mazda is on a roll at the moment. Although much of their sales growth is attributable to their CUVs, it is heartening that the MX5 is performing better than expected (sports cars are supposed to be dead). I also gather that the 6 is doing reasonably well in the USA, a declining market for saloons, as is elsewhere in the world. Turning the farm around has taken 15 years of diligent furrow-ploughing, but now Mazdas are largely regarded as the picks of their respective crops. Their attitude is admirable and I respect them for it.

    1. I fully agree on your last sentence. Although I neither like CUVs nor Mazda’s current over-sporty, small window design line, I can’t help but acknowledge their constant, consistent and careful approach to defining their brand. (Hello, PSA, it’s really possible!)
      It’s actually a good example for the evolution theme we had here some time ago.

  2. I think Mazda is enjoying the benefits of a pretty new/ young range of products that are – to most people – attractively styled a bit outside of the mainstream. The CX-3 and new MX-5 are still so fresh that we have not seen their impact in the market at this point, and I expect the former will be provide good extra sales as it is in a niche that is new to the Mazda range.

    This has clearly come on the back of a massive NPD investment by Mazda and this range will need to throw off a lot of free-cash if it is to help fund the next generation and those subsequent. The cars are clearly engineered to create as large an economy of scale and therefore profit as possible, with very obvious, high reuse of the maximum number of components. If you sit in a 2, 3, 6, CX-5, CX-3 and even MX-5 you can rapidly spot the same indicators, steering wheels, HVAC controls, Infotainment … etc., etc. used in many of them. Perceived quality does suffer in places as a result (as described in the LTT pieces on my 3), but I suspect that it’s a sacrifice Mazda has to make right now in its attempt to pump-prime sustainable profit growth.

    They are also managing to keep their pricing competitive – how on earth they make money out of selling the base MX-5 for c. £16k in the UK … answers on a postcard.

    1. Nice answer. Aren’t Mazda attracting people who may havd bought Alfa, Saab and Lancia products in days gone by? Them and Subaru and maybe Honda. It’s a funny development that it’s Japanese brands who appeal to these customers now.

    2. Richard, I think you are right to an extent – perhaps not Subaru anymore outside of the US (see our previous posts about its range in the UK at least). Honda’s CRV seems to do well, but the Accord has gone now (forever?) in the UK, the Civic is waning and the new Jazz, however practical, is a design horror inside and out. This is leaving the field a little open for Mazda, and cars like the 3 Saloon appeal to me in the same way, say, a 900/ 9-3 would have done (perhaps not as much)!

    3. I think it is the combination of two facts.
      In the last three years (or better after Fukushima) the weakening japanese currency has lost about 30 percent of its value compared to the big three other currencies (USD, EUR, GBP)
      And Mazda is still keeping the greatest part of their production lines in Japan – which is a remarkable difference to Nissan, Toyota or Honda.
      So the MX-5 is real japanese bargain.

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