There are many exciting things happening at Mazda at the moment. We have received great recognition for our new cars with awards for design, low carbon, fleet and family cars, and Auto Express has published its Driver Power survey where our customers have given their approval to both our products and brand.
SKYACTIV technology is at the heart of our cars and is what is driving costs down for our customers, this is the rational part of buying a car. Buy into SKYACTIV and you are buying into technology that delivers real world class leading low CO2, class leading MPG and has won recognition for its low carbon credentials without any compromise on performance.
Although the head often rules our purchase decision, sometimes we have to follow our heart and it is design that tugs at the heart strings, the emotional reason for purchase and our Kodo design really gives our cars kerbside appeal.
Our design has been winning us awards and plaudits across the globe, including the Red Dot design award, notably Apple and Nike have both won Red Dot awards in the past so we are in good company for recognition of our design.
To really explain Kodo our designers created a chair that takes Kodo design language away from the car and shows how it would look in a piece of furniture. I hope you agree that the Kodo chair is a truly stunning piece of design that reflects the motion and energy that is conveyed in our car design. It was shown at the Milan Design Week and attracted a lot of attention amongst the other exhibitions that were displaying the best in global design, both by established and up and coming designers.
Almost as though to compliment this, WardsAuto World in the US, a very influential publication, put the Mazda6 in their top 10 interiors list.
This gives the Mazda6 award winning technology, award winning design and one of the best interiors, not a bad start for our latest car.
The other bit of exciting news that you can read here in the blog is the results of the Auto Express Driver Power survey. Over 46,000 readers voted in this year’s survey, placing the Mazda CX-5 at number five of cars that customers are most satisfied with and making it the best performing SUV in the survey. In the same survey Mazda was polled as the 4th best car brand, up from #12 last year and a real testament to how the Mazda brand has matured in the UK market.
On the back of all this exciting news we are planning for growth of around 20 percent from a base of 26,200 sales in 2012.
After five years of challenging business conditions I finally feel we have turned the corner and we are in charge of our own destiny and, as we roll-out our sixth generation SKYACTIV technology models, sales are gathering pace and this financial year I am forecasting sales of over 31,000 cars.
Our network is reporting exceptionally strong interest in our cars and customer offers, independent surveys backs up what our dealers are telling us and we can see that order take is very strong.
Our newly-launched Mazda6, second of the SKYACTIV technology models after the Mazda CX‑5 crossover, is doing well in the fleet sector with weekly order take getting close to the levels the previous generation Mazda6 enjoyed in its heyday when the segment was much larger.
I’m very confident about the car’s performance and look. The press reaction and the awards it has already won speak for themselves. All-new Mazda6 won the hotly-contested Fleet News award for ‘Best Upper-Medium’ category for 2013, crucial for a segment that is around 75 percent corporate sales.
There has been very strong global demand for the Mazda CX-5 and we have not been able to get enough to meet the UK demand. We sold almost 3,100 in FY2012 and we’re planning for more than 6,000 in this financial year as supply of the car ramps up.
So the message coming from us at the moment is we really do have the best cars on sale in the UK today. They are winning recognition for their design, interior and technology, they save you money on your motoring when costs for fuel are high, they look great on the road and our customers are happy with the product and the service we provide. There has never been a better time to be a Mazda customer or dealer.