Christian Schultze, director of research and operations for Mazda Motor Europe, explained in a video published last year: “Based on the different customer needs for individual mobility, the local driving conditions, and the carbon footprint of available fuels and electricity, we aim to offer the best suitable powertrain.
“Accordingly, there is no ‘most-sustainable’ solution for the powertrain choice that suits all customers in all locations across the globe.”
This strategy began with the MX-30; the company’s first battery-electric car, launched early last year. The flagship CX-60 SUV followed this year with a petrol-plug-in hybrid powertrain, and mild-hybrid diesel versions are set to arrive in early 2023.
The plans are set to continue with a petrol-range-extender version of the MX-30; resolving the limited 124-mile range for which the pure-electric version is often criticised. Afterwards, a new model dubbed ‘CX-80’ – an extended variant of the CX-60 with three rows of seats – will arrive as the brand’ new flagship.
“We believe that a multi-solution approach will be effective,” Mazda CEO Akira Marumoto told reporters today.
The second phase of the strategy, between 2025 and 2027, will see Mazda introduce a new hybrid system and additional battery-electric models “as regulations become more stringent, especially in Europe”.
This is in reference to the Euro 7 emissions proposals made on 10 November, which will lower NOx emissions by 35% compared with Euro 6 and cut tailpipe particulates by 13%.
The rules have drawn fire from across the industry. Oliver Zipse – head of lobby group the ACEA and CEO of BMW – said: “Unfortunately, the environmental benefit of the [European] commission’s proposal is very limited, whereas it heavily increases the cost of vehicles.” Meanwhile, Ford’s Europe head of its Model E electric division, Martin Sander, said it would undermine the shift to electric models.