Despite their huge drive to wring every last drop of mileage out of the ICU, with new direct injection engines and idling stop function for all cars, Mazda will not stand around idle while the rest of the world is hyper to jump on the hybrid bandwagon. In 2013, Mazda wants to introduce a midsize hybrid. And out of what hat did they pull that Flemish Giant of a rabbit? As predicted by our resident sage Cammy Corrigan, the essential gadgetry comes courtesy of Toyota.
The Nikkei [sub] has it that “the two automakers have reached a final agreement under which Toyota will supply the Toyota Hybrid System II, comprising a high-capacity battery, an electric motor, a generator and a power control unit. This system, designed for use with an engine of 2 liters or smaller, is ideal for small and midsize hybrids. Among Toyota hybrids, THS II is employed in the current-generation Prius.”
And what about sales? Toyota group parts manufacturers will sell the hybrid innards “at an initial rate of tens of thousands of units a year.” Mazda will combine the components with a (so far unspecified, keep guessing) “new gasoline engine and create the hybrid version of a mainstay midsize passenger car.”
And what’s in it for Toyota to supply a competitor with strategically important gizmology? According to the Nikkei, “for Toyota, the arrangement will help lower related production costs through economies of scale. Mazda will be the first company outside the Toyota group to receive large-scale supplies of such core components.” The way it sounds, not the last.