Mazda has reached a landmark agreement with Toyota to utilise the hybrid technology used in the Toyota Prius under license for its own new fleet of hybrid vehicles.
In conjunction with the next generation SKY engine currently under development, Mazda plans to leverage its newly acquired technology to manufacture a hybrid vehicle in Japan by 2013.
Toyota began sales of the Prius – the world’s first mass-production hybrid vehicle – in 1997, and has since sold over 2.3 million hybrid vehicles in more than 70 countries worldwide.
As a symbol of its commitment to the environment, Toyota has offered its hybrid system as a way of encouraging the popularisation of efficient technologies and has said it will consider similar requests from other companies as well.
Based on its long-term vision for ‘Sustainable Zoom-Zoom’, Mazda aims to improve the average fuel consumption of its fleet globally by 30 per cent by 2015.
This hybrid technology acquisition is only part of the solution, with Mazda using a Building Block Strategy where is will focus on the core aspects of its vehicles – engines, transmissions and weight reduction – and then adding electric drive systems such as idling stop, regenerative braking and hybrid systems.