Mazda Eyeing First Profit In Five Years Amid Weak Yen, Skyactiv Success

Derek Kreindler
by Derek Kreindler
mazda eyeing first profit in five years amid weak yen skyactiv success

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.

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  • Fordson Fordson on Apr 25, 2013

    This is what is going to cause them problems...the horrible Tom-tom nav suite and tiny screen. Have not seen one good review of it and was personally not impressed by it.

    • See 2 previous
    • Darex Darex on Apr 25, 2013

      @Lie2me Built-in units aren't thief-magnets, and portable units are very unaesthetic. In the big cities, you'd be insane to leave any portable electronics visible in the car, and mounting/dismounting the mounts and gear is a tiresome activity. Lastly, I am a huge back-up camera fan. Best to have it all integrated into the dash.

  • George Herbert George Herbert on Apr 25, 2013

    I'm a sick enough puppy to own two - both RX-8s. Or rather, wife bought one, then I got one a year later. I've also driven rental 3s, 6s, and am planning on grabbing a CX-5 when I can find one test-driveable at a dealer. So far, impressed across the fleet.

  • Danio3834 Danio3834 on Apr 25, 2013

    I think what this proves is that ambigous branding of powertrain technologies pays off. Skyactahemisynergyboost FTW!

  • Darrencardinal Darrencardinal on Apr 25, 2013

    I have to say that I am a big fan of Mazda. I have owned 3 Mazdas, a Protege and two Miatas. I loved the Protege. I imagined it to be a poor man's BMW 3 series. Tight, fun to drive, and quick. I also thought it was very stylish. The Miatas... well everyone knows about them and the hype is justified. I currently drive a British Racing Green 99 Miata, I used to have a 90. It is a beautiful fun to drive car, every detail about the car just seems right. My daily commute to work is a joy. I am not just a fan of the cars, I am a fan of the company. I appreciate what Mazda does, the vision they bring to their cars. Mazda is a treasure, they did the world a favor by taking the British roadster and doing it up right. Remember that back in 90 no one made them anymore. And what other company has the vision, guts, and sheer stubbornness to stick with the rotary as long as they did? I remember an article at TTAC not too long ago asking the readers what their favorite car company was that they don't own; a company they admire even if they don't own (or never had owned) one of their cars. As I recall the number one answer was Mazda. About the only knock on them is they seem to be more rust prone than other makes. I have not experienced this myself but I always keep them washed and waxed. One day I am going to own a 1993 Mazda RX-7. I still think that is one of the best looking cars ever made.