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#1 of 1996 Mazda: Does it have a good future in US?
May 08, 2003 (9:39 am)
Mazda has made alot of profits in Europe of late but in the US is facing declining popularity. Sales have been down for the past year and a half since an upswing spanning 1998-2001 with vehicles sold around 240,000-260,000 around that time. Remember this is a car company that sold 345,000-370,000 cars in the US between the years 1990-1994. With that said should Mazda just banned the US market and focus their efforts on the European Market or does it have a long lasting future in the US? Opinions please:
#2 of 1996 If Ford leaves them alone and lets Mazda be Mazda!
May 08, 2003 (9:56 am)
The 626 with the Ford auto tranny comes to mind...
I think Mazda is regaining the respect among the public and with strong products (Pro, Trib, 6, RX8) I think there future looks pretty bright.
I'm rooting for them! Bring it on!
#3 of 1996 are you nuts carguy?????
May 08, 2003 (1:31 pm)
Why would you want to keep one of the best Japanese brands away from NA shores?!??!?!
People should just be glad that there's still a car company in NA that makes well-built, inexpensive vehicles that are fun to drive!
go buy Mazda! NOW!
May 08, 2003 (7:26 pm)
The 2004 Mustang will be built at the Flat Rock plant, which is a joint Ford-Mazda plant. The Mazda 6 platform will be used for the upcoming Ford Futura, as well as other Ford (and possibly Mercury) spin-offs. Mazda is also working with Ford and Volvo on the new global small-car platform, which will be used for the next-generation Focus and Volvo S40/V40, as well as the Mazda Protege replacement, the Mazda 3.
Based on those plans, I'd say that Mazda does have a future in this country.
May 08, 2003 (7:48 pm)
I was shocked that the Mazda 6 did not cause a sales increase for the company. Everything I read about the 6 seemed very promising, and I think the car looks much better than its primary competitor, the Altima. I don't understand why the Altima (which is cheap looking IMHO) sells so much better than the 6.
#6 of 1996 The Big H:
May 08, 2003 (9:27 pm)
I don't to keep Mazda away from NA shores. Consumers want to. Looks at the stats: Mitsubishi, VW, and Kia even outsell Mazda. Those car companies don't even have good quality. VW has good cars but all kinds of reliability problems. Mitsu is going to the Japanese Pontiac stuff. Its hard to believe how one bad tranny a decade ago could affect a Car Company's success a decade later. Acura had a bunch a blown tranny's but it didn't create a huge sales downturn like it did for Mazda(1995-1997.)
As for the Altima the car came out out almost a year and a half before the 6 did. 6 sales have been up every month since its debut but Mazda expected alot more sales for the 6 than this.
I think it would be more profitable for Mazda just to sell cars in Europe. In the US Mazda was such a promising company in the late 80's/early 90's and than the 94 626 with the Ford Tranny killed their name they worked so hard for. After 1995 all their loyal buyers went to other brands. Mazda still hasn't gained those customers back in a decade. Its hard to believe the year of the Ford Tranny was their best selling year(94) and then everything just went downhill. In fact Mazda went 3 years(1995)without making a profit in a month until 1998.
#7 of 1996 Mazda's are Fun to Drive:
May 08, 2003 (9:47 pm)
Mazda's are good cars and nicely built. I guess they are the Japanese BMW now.
May 09, 2003 (12:15 am)
I too would have to say Mazda's future is bright in the U.S. I think Mazda's problem is at the dealer level. They are often paired with VW, Subaru or Kia/Hyundai franchises. That surely can't help. The Mazda 6 just needs a few detail changes to help it out. First of all not everyone wants black leather in their Sport model, and some rear-seat headrests would help too. The car just kinda comes off cheap inside. Mazda simply guessed wrong on which 6 model would be the most sought after, every time I've tried to look at the car the dealer never had any 6s w/sport pk in stock always a lot full of 6i models with nothing on them. I also think the lack of product, lackluster product like the 626, 929 and Millenia etc all in the face of a re-born Nissan, newer products from Toyota and Honda and the emerging Koreans are much more to blame for Mazda's sales number than a transmission issue of 8+ years ago. Remember Audi came back from a far worse issue and they did it with sheer product.
#9 of 1996 The 6 and the Altima
May 09, 2003 (4:09 am)
I haven't driven a 6, but have sat in one. I have driven an Altima. While the 6 is a noble effort, it's just too small inside to really make in impact in the family sedan field. I would actually consider an Altima as a viable replacement for my '00 Intrepid. It actually has *more* legroom up front, and only a little less in back.
In contrast, the 6 feels tiny inside. It's cramped for me up front, and the back seat is practically non-existent. I actually fit better in a Dodge Neon! Now the 6 makes a good niche product, as a small sport sedan, but it's just not big enough to cut it in the bread-and-butter family car market.
Also, in person, I didn't find the 6 interior to be all that impressive. I can't remember if it had any major fit/finish concerns, but there was enough cheap plastic inside to remind you that this ain't no premium car!
#10 of 1996 Fords in disguise...
May 09, 2003 (4:19 am)
...a few Mazda models were really Fords in disguise. The Mazda Navajo was an Explorer underneath and I believe they once had a pickup that was really a Ranger. Didn't the Probe and the MX6 share platforms?
Trivia: Mazda was the brand name of the most popular light bulb in the early 20th Century.