While Holden and Ford sales have been in steady decline over the past decade Mazda has steadily climbed and in 2012 the Japanese car maker overtook Ford as the third highest seller behind Toyota and Holden.
An indication of the dramatic swing is that in 2004 Holden sold around 178,000 vehicles compared with 55,000 Mazdas. As of November 2013 the gap had closed to just over 8000 with Holden down to 103,000 and Mazda up to 95,000.
The number 3 is most significant because the Mazda3 makes up around 40 per cent of Mazda’s total Australian sales despite the imminent arrival of an all-new model. The company’s other star performer is the CX-5 which is now Australia’s top seller across all segments of the highly-competitive SUV market segment.
Mazda’s 2013 performance is all the more impressive because it has been a relatively quiet year with no new model releases and only the addition of some new variants to the CX-5 and BT-50 range.
Australia is one of Mazda’s most important markets and this was recognised when the Japanese head office chose Melbourne as the first of five major cities to reveal the upcoming, third generation, Mazda3 with Istanbul, St Petersburg, London and New York following as the earth moved around the sun.
The next three years will be busier with five new models set to arrive here spearheaded by the all-new Mazda3 in January 2014. Also due for new generation models between 2014 and 2016 are the Mazda2, MX-5 and CX-9. Mazda won’t be specific on the fifth new model but given its success in the SUV field and the trend towards sub-compacts a CX-3 is the strong favourite. Based on the Mazda2 platform it would join recent releases such as Holden Trax, Nissan Juke, Peugeot 2008 and Ford EcoSport.
Each of these upcoming models will continue the roll-out of Mazda’s ground-breaking SkyActiv technology that covers all aspect of vehicle design including engines, transmissions, brakes, body structure and chassis designed to significantly reduce fuel consumption and exhaust emissions by between 20 and 30 per cent.