Mazda, the favorite car brand of enthusiasts that few seem to actually buy, looks set to become profitable for the first time in five years.
With Mazda so heavily reliant on exporting their Japan made cars, the recent weakening of the yen will no doubt help their financial fortunes. Naturally, Mazda is also playing up the success of their new models which feature the still-bizarre sounding Skyactiv technology.
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, ork on Skyactiv began in 2006, with Mazda engineers tasked with creating a new platform and powertrain from the ground up. The 2008 financial crisis was a particularly trying time for Mazda executive VP Seita Kanai, who told the Journal
“There were many times when I lost my ability to think” after looking at quarter after quarter of dismal numbers,”
At that point, Mazda executives began to second guess if their bet on gasoline and diesel engines (rather than hybrids and other advanced powertrains) was the right choice. Kanai, however, decided to bring Skyactiv to market prematurely, putting the new powertrains (but not the lightweight platforms) in versions of the Mazda2 and Mazda3.