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Mazda - Does it have a good future in US?

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  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,594
    but traditionally, rotary engines don't get very good gas mileage. I think it has something to do with the combustion chambers having too much surface area, which draws too much heat away, or something like that? Anyway, a '95 Mazda RX-7 is EPA rated at 17/25. Just for comparison, so is a '95 Corvette.

    Routine maintenance on them is critical, too. If you don't keep up on oil and coolant changes, they can deteriorate very quickly. Stuff you should do anyway, with any engine, but with rotaries it's more critical. I'm guessing because they rev faster, so they're more strained?

    So basically, we have a high-maintenance engine that's expensive when it breaks, and guzzles and pollutes as much as a V-8 more than 4 times its size. Sounds like it would end up on the short list for most bean-counter managers. Sounds like a miracle that it ever got out of the experimental stages!
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    things have changed substantially with the new rotary that will go in the RX8.

    They have changed the apex seals on the rotors to be much more durable and long-lasting.

    They have changed the location of the exhaust ports so they run a lot less dirty smog-wise.

    And the new engine produces the same power as the old twin-turbo, only it is normally aspirated.

    PLUS it gets better mileage than the 17/25 of old.

    And they don't rev faster than Honda's i-VTECs...both have a 9000 rpm redline. Think S2000!

    Subaru has regained major market share by being the Japanese "AWD company". It seems to me Mazda could become the "rotary company" along with the usual dose of that zoom-zoom PR. Rotaries lend themselves to lightweight applications due to their low torque, so they couldn't put one in the minivan for instance. But they could have rotaries in all their cars...

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,594
    is the RX-8 supposed to get? I haven't been able to find any fuel economy figures for it. Can the new engine run on regular unleaded, or does it still need premium?
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    and I don't think it has been tested by the EPA yet, but when they first introduced the RX8, they said fuel economy should be more on the order of 20/28.

    We will have to wait to see if their statement regarding bump in fuel efficiency is true, however. Since the car will be on the road soon, the official EPA numbers should be available any day now....

    The old non-turbo RX7s ran on regular gas, so one would hope the new ones will too. However, I will bet since it is important to obtain maximum horsepower figutres for this type of car, they will recommend premium.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    in the RX-8 will require premium gas (higher compression compared to older NA RX-7s)

    and 20/30 is the targeted gas mileage Mazda has listed on their website.

    the advancement in material and oil injection technology has allowed the exhaust port to be relocated to the side housing instead of on the peripheral. This change dramatically reduces emission, allows more complete combustion, thus resulting in more power, all without forced induction :-)

    it's not like Mazda just put the rotary on the shelf when they stopped selling it in the US in 1996... A lot of development has taken place during that time...
  • the_big_hthe_big_h Posts: 1,583
    and I think it is a GOOD THING that they didn't make Mazda6 a bloated beast like the Altima.

    For a 'global car' that is to be sold all over the world, Mazda6 simply can't have the 'All-American' size and proportion. It has to be more compact to fit the narrower and smaller roads of Europe and Japan and Southeast Asia.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,594
    it's not that the Altima is bloated, exactly, just that the Mazda 6 isn't very space-efficient.

    The 6 is 70.1 inches wide, compared to 70.4 inches for the Altima. In the real world, that's practically imperceptible. The Altima is about 5 inches longer though, 191.5" versus 185.8", and the wheelbase is longer by about the same amount...110.2" versus 105.3". So basically, both cars have about the same amount of overhang, it's just that the Altima has more between the wheel centers.

    Turning circles? The Altima's is 37.4 feet, while the 6 is actually larger, at 38.7 feet. You'd think that a shorter wheelbase would allow the 6 to make a tighter U-turn, but that's not the case here.

    Weight? The Altima 2.5S manual is listed at 3039 lb, while the smaller Mazda 6 4-cyl manual is a slightly chunkier 3042 lb.

    I'm not saying it's a bad thing, necessarily, that the 6 is smaller than the Altima, Accord, Camry, and competing cars. But because it is, it's not going to have the wide appeal of those other cars, either. Now if Mazda can find enough buyers that will go for the 6, more power to 'em. It's never going to take on the big boys though, unless it grows up.
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    I made a mistake before: The Protege nameplate came put in 1990 not 1995. The 1st generation Protege debut for the 1990 model year.

    Its impossible for Mazda to develop all their products independently because they don't have money to do that. This is a company that almost went defunct in 1996 and has been in and out of the red since 1998.

    As for the 6 growing I don't think its has to. The 3 Series is smaller than a Maxima, TL, and Es 300 and still sells really well so I don't think size is a problem with the 6. Mazda just needs to get their name out there more.

    As for the Altima and 6 comparison in styling the 6 will date better than the Altima I think. The Altima is nice looking but the 6 just looks better to me.

    As for the 3 Ford will give Volvo and Mazda seperate platforms so it it will be based on a Ford Focus Platform. The bright spot is it will be made in Japan so all the kinks should be worked out in a small period of time. Some parts wil be from Ford based on what somebody said on another board on this site so I'm kind of worried about that though. Platform sharing doesn't bother me though. Its kind of sad to see the Protege name go because Mazda is best known for the Protege now. The 3 will have to build its repulation up. I hope Mazda keeps the names 3 and 6 for a long time rather than renaming their cars every decade. That leads to confusion among non-automobile enthusiasts(mostly the buying public.)
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,594
    I do agree that the 6 is a nicer looking car. It's better-proportioned. The Altima's greenhouse is a bit large in comparison to the rest of the car, and it's downright stubby in back, whereas the 6 just seems to flow better.

    It's just not a suitable car for me because I can't fit comfortably in it! Oh well, blame my mother...she should've married a shorter guy!
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    with regard to the bottom line, Ford has a lot of money invested in Mazda at this point, not to mention the fact that Mazda engineering is useful to it in lots of different ways globally, so I am quite sure Mazda's future is secure in NA for quite a while yet!

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • fezofezo Posts: 9,195
    Well, as someone who didn't buy a Subaru Legacy because it was too small compared to an Accord it certainly matters to me!

    I'm sure there will be a lot of folks it odesn't matter to, but with the numbers Mazda has now they need to aim at a larger audience.

    Sporty is definitely the image they want to project. Losing rebadged Ford parts will help.
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    In the early 90's Mazda didn't have any Ford Parts and their cars were rock solid. I know alot people associate mazda with Mitsubshi but Mazda's build quality is definately better than Mitsu.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Toyota and Honda. All others have quality lower than GM, Ford, and Chrysler.
        Isn't every Japanese brand but Toyota and Honda largely owned by one of the USA Big 3?
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,195
    I agree with that. Mazda parts are superior to Mitsu as near as I can tell.

    How anyone would let a Ford part - particularly a powertrain part - in a Mazda is beyond me.

    I have had a number of people say, and I pretty well agree, that Fords aredesigned pretty nicely but have bad powertrains. The sad part is that this really means that Ford builds nice cars as long as you don't actually drive them.....
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Why buy a Japanese brand to get lower quality? If you want a Ford, buy a Ford and not a Mazda. If you want a GM, don't get an Isuzu. If you want a Chrysler, don't get a Mitsubishi.
        If low price is a concern, get a Kia,Hyundai, or Daewoo.
        If reliability and durability are main concern, get the Toyota...and if you don't like Toyota, buy a Honda.
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    Thats not true at all. About the Ford Thing I hate when people bring that up. The Protege is a reliable as the Civic and Corolla and better than the Sentra. The 6 is as reliable as the Camry or Accord. The MPV is as reliable as the Odessy or Sienna. So Don't give me the Ford stuff. Its interesting because JD Powers did rate Mazda as one of the most reliable brands in the 5 year survey(1998-2003: above the industry average in reliability for that period.) JD powers also gives Mazda bad first 90 day surveys of ownership rating and basically those surveys mean nothing(wind noise, fuel mileadge.) I don't like first 90 day of ownership surveys. Consumer Reports rates Mazda good. So "There are only 2 quality Japanese Brands" is untrue. Plus throw the bad rating of the Tribute out and Mazda is up there with the big boys in reliability.

    About Japanese Brands being owned by the Big 3: Mitsu basically put themself in that hole with terrible build quality in the mid to late 90's.
    Mazda on the other hand had the Ford tranny incident which had a part in putting them into bankruptcy. Also the 95 Protege and 95 Millenia were not recieved well by the buying public at the time. So its some of Ford's fault and Mazda's fault what happened to Mazda in the 1994-1996 period that put them into bankruptcy.
    Nissan is owned by Renault which is a french company so Nissan is not owned one by of the Domestic Big 3 competitors.
    Subaru is owned by GM and GM also owns Isuzu.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Oops...forgot that Nissan is owned by Renault, the company made famous by the Renault Dauphine.
        Does GM have part ownership in any quality foreign brand? To improve its image, GM recently acquired that coveted Daewoo brand.
         I am disappointed that Toyota will let GM re-badge a Toyota to sell as a GM vehicle (Pontiac Vibe and formerly Chevrolet Prizm and Nova). Honda was very unwise to badge an Isuzu as a Honda Passport.
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    95 Sentra, 95 Maxima, and 98 Altima were not received well by the buying public. On the other hand the previous generation of those cars were a runaway success especially the 1st generation Altima(1993-1997.) On the bright spot 2002 was Nissan's best selling year since their top selling year of 1994.
  • dinu01dinu01 Posts: 2,586
    You're pretty ignorant of tha facts when it comes to "Quality Japanese brands", as you call it. Yes T+H are good, but Mazdas are just as reliable - if not better in certain vehicles.

    Protege, 6, MPV, Miata: As reliable as their Toyota and Honda counterparts.

    What Mazdas generally offer that T+H don't is driving fun, something that unlike 0-60 #s can't be measured, but only experienced.

    Dinu
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    Il liked the early-mid 90's Prizm's. The styling was kinda nice. It looked like a mini version of the early to mid 90's Camry the way the Prizm was styled for that time.
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