Mazda says it is on the path to remain profitable after having finally turned its fortunes around last year, marking the first time in five years the Japanese manufacturer has posted a profit.

The company made $34.3 billion yen ($372 million) in the last Japanese financial year (ending March 31), a stark contrast to the four previous years, with the company’s 2011-12 records showing a massive $1.24 billion loss.

Speaking to CarAdvice at the global launch of the new Mazda 3 in Los Angeles, Martin Benders, Mazda Australia’s managing director, said the Japanese manufacturer has all intentions of remaining profitable going forward.

“First of all the big part of the loses [previously] where that they had high cost vehicles at the same time they had the global financial crisis at the same time as Euro and US dollar went down” Benders said.

Outside of external factor affecting the company, the main reason for the profitability turn around has been the switch to smarter manufacturing, with Mazda’s production line now able to cope far better with model variations and demand changes.

Mazda plans to sell 1.7 million cars a year globally by 2016, having hit 1.2 million last Japanese financial year and aiming to hit 1.35 million this year.

“All of that together will mean profitability, their target is to double the level of profit from last year to this year.”

But despite the profitability focus, Mazda continues to invest heavily into future technology and products.

“They are doing a whole lot of things, still in investment cycle, still investing in next-generation SkyActiv powertrains, building a new plant in mexico, expanding capacity in Thailand, joint ventures in Malaysia and Russia and doing some reshuffle in China as well.”

The focus for Mazda will be to shifts its production to other markets so that it’s not held ransom by the Japanese Yen. The company aims to have a 50:50 production split in/out of Japan by 2018.

Currently all Mazda vehicles in Australia are built in Japan, including the soon to arrive 2014 Mazda 3.

  • notatoy

    I never doubted this as Mazda continues to produce decent and honest cars.

    • gq

      They’ve got some decent cars, but I don’t know about honest.

      Servicing requirements aren’t honest, twice a year here, yet only once a year overseas for the same car?

      • matt

        many brands still have 6 month services, im not sure why mazda is getting picked on lately? Just because it has no capped price offer? Generally if you have the cash to buy a brand new car you have the cash to service it properly, any whinging about Mazda’s service intervals are probly people who don’t buy new anyway, and just like to have a laurie oaks style whine.

        • JD

          Clearly you are ignorant if you dont consider the ongoing costs of a car you buy. That said my car has a 6 month service interval, and I have never taken it back to the dealership apart from the first free service.

        • w3t

          Matt, Mazda’s requirements are not for servicing the car “properly”, it’s to suck more money out of their customers. Their cars do not need 6 month service intervals, identical Mazda models have 12 month intervals overseas.

          Whether or not people can afford the servicing is irrelevant to the fact Mazda is ripping people off and whether people can afford it or not does not justify the rip off either.

          Trying to excuse it because most people can afford it is quite ridiculous.

          They are not the only brand to be doing this, but those other brands also do not deserve to be praised as “honest”.

          • Dave W

            Instead of whinging online, why don’t the Mazda owners do something about that 6 months service period? Surely there are Mazda Owners club forum where they can organise and perhaps contact the consumers affair.

          • Scout392

            Maybe serviceing every 6 months will be better for the car in the long run?
            Maybe 12m service interval is a marketing ploy?

  • Dave W

    Feel sorry for the Japanese workers losing their jobs as manufacturers move overseas.

  • BP

    Still not entirely happy with the 3’s front end. Reminds me of a Peugeot 407, too long a bonnet.

  • JD

    I’m not surprised. The new 3 will run rings around the outdated “new” corolla.

    • JP

      Still hard to work out why the “3” doesn’t really trouble the Top 10 scorers in most countries, other than Australia.
      And yes, that front end….no thanks..

      • Sydlocal

        …and Canada…. :-)

        • JD

          I was surprised to see many mazda’s during my trip there. After all, the 3 is the no #4 selling car in canada.

          It trails behind the civic, elantra and corolla respectively.

          They get the better looking civic though.

      • F1orce

        Lack of dealer network.

        Outside Canada, Japan & Australia Mazda has a very weak dealership network.

  • Sydlocal

    ‘Currently all Mazda vehicles in Australia are built in Japan’. Except the BT50 of course Alborz…

    • JD

      i hope they dont follow Honda’s path in which nearly all their vehicles are made in Thailand.

  • Sumpguard

    They are certainly on the right track.

  • TG

    The company made $34.”

    Taken from the front page snippet, lol.

  • mazdaman

    Instead of complaining about mazda service costs make a couple phone calls and compare the costs from different dealers, it can vary wildly.
    I’ve had mazdas for years and I don’t pay overly high service costs. If a service sounds expensive then negotiate with the dealer, it works.
    I’m not claiming they are ‘cheap’ to service but the small extra cost to worth it to drive a better car than the average.