Thursday, August 31, 2000

Mazda North American Operations

Mazda Motor Corporation today announced the appointment of Charles R. Hughes as senior adviser of the company and president of its subsidiary, Mazda North American Operations, effective October 1.

Mazda North American
Hughes, who has been working as a consultant for various clients, will be responsible for Mazda North American Operations, including the U.S. and Canada. He succeeds Richard Beattie, who was named Ford Motor Company vice president, Investor Relations.

Hughes, 55, is the former president and CEO at Land Rover North America, where he was responsible for marketing sales and distribution of the Land Rover sports utility vehicle line in the North American market from 1986 to 1999.

"Charles is someone who clearly knows the car business - particularly the import market in the U.S. - and he will bring a lot to Mazda," Mark Fields, President of Mazda Motor Corporation said. "He has a good breadth of sales, marketing and advertising experience with a broad range of companies, and he has a reputation as an outstanding brand developer. He also has strong dealer development and management experience."

Hughes, who grew up in Pleasantville, New York, joined General Motors in 1967 and worked there four years in various sales budgeting, show and exhibits, sales training and dealer development positions.

In 1973, Hughes joined American Motors as a corporate marketing planner. Three years later, he was appointed account supervisor with an advertising firm, Doyle Dane Bernbach, in New York where he managed marketing and advertising strategies for the Volkswagen, Porsche and Audi brands and developed an expanded marketing research program.

In 1978, he returned to the car business and joined Fiat as head of marketing operations, responsible for advertising, merchandising and sales training for Fiat, Lancia and Ferrari in the U.S.

Hughes joined Volkswagen in 1979 as head of marketing for the Porsche/Audi division and, in 1982, moved to the larger Volkswagen division, also as head of marketing and later became regional manager, overseeing the four-state mid-Atlantic region.

In 1986, Hughes was hired by Land Rover to reestablish operations in the U.S. Land Rover had pulled out in 1974. Among other things, Hughes led the effort to develop the Land Rover Centres concept, which helped extend the brand position to the retail level. He left the company in mid-1999 to pursue various consulting projects, including several Internet-oriented initiatives.

Hughes holds an MBA from the University of Rochester's Simon School of Business and a bachelor's degree in history from Lafayette College, Easton, Pennsylvania.

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Thursday, August 24, 2000

New Tribute SUV

To connect emotionally with young adults and the young-at-heart, Mazda Motor Corporation is joining with music artists and fashion designers to cultivate prospects for its soon-to-be-launched Tribute SUV.

Mazda Tribute SUV
This innovative marketing effort, "TRIBUTE link." makes its debut this week with the arrival of TRIBUTE link clothing and other items at stores throughout Japan. TRIBUTE link CDs, featuring DJ Premier and CHARA, will follow later this year. More activities under the TRIBUTE link umbrella are being considered, including a possible tie-in with the film industry.

"TRIBUTE link will help us connect with and identify potential customers before the official launch of Tribute in Japan," said Masa Wakayama, director and general manager of Mazda Motor Corporation's Domestic Marketing Division.

"Collaboration between car manufacturers and other business sectors to promote recognition and sales of a new product brand isn't new," Wakayama added "It is unusual, however, for a car manufacturer to attempt to connect with consumers through collaboration with actual artists - and to do so before the actual launch of the new product. We call this concept 'entertainment marketing.'"

The idea for TRIBUTE link grew from a study of potential customers between the ages of 25 and 35, the core group of Mazda Tribute prospects. Market research indicates these people "yearn to make a breakthrough in life" with the slogan "Beat Your Soul."

TRIBUTE link brings together artists and creators who identify with this "Beat Your Soul" concept to produce special activities that will deepen the emotional connection between Mazda and these potential customers. TRIBUTE link and the "Beat Your Soul" concept fit with Mazda's brand strategy, "kokoro wo ugokasu shin hassou," which means "new ideas that stir your emotions."

Joining Mazda on TRIBUTE link are:
TK Takeo Kikuchi brand of World Co., Ltd., who will introduce a unique line of TRIBUTE link clothing in stores starting Friday, August 25.
SMEJ Associated Records, Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc. who will introduce a unique TRIBUTE link label. Also, TRIBUTE link CDs will be available in early October, starting with "PUSHIM," featuring DJ Premiere, followed by "SATOSHI TOMIIE," featuring CHARA in late November. An album, "BEAT YOUR SOUL," will be released in Spring 2001.

For more information, visit the TRIBUTE link website at

Tribute, a new five-passenger sports utility vehicle, will be available at Mazda dealerships in late 2000. Tribute combines distinctive, sophisticated styling that attracts attention in the city and in the countryside alike.

It has a spacious, convenient interior. Buyers can select from a powerful 3.0-liter V6 engine or brisk 2.0-liter four-cylinder offering.

Tribute delivers superior driving performance with an electric magnetic rotary blade coupling 4WD system. These features combine to deliver Mazda's brand personality of "stylish," "insightful" and "spirited."

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Tuesday, August 22, 2000

Urban Break S, MPV Series

Mazda MPV Urban Break S

1. More variety: two new 2.0-liter engine models
- The "Urban Break S" and "Urban Break" models are based on the two-wheel-drive 2.0-liter engine "B" model. The major differences from the base model are listed below.

[Features commonly found in "Urban Break S" and "Urban Break"]
- Audio system incorporating a CD player, an audio cassette tape deck, an AM/FM radio tuner and four speakers.
- Dark-tinted glass for all rear windows-side, quarter and lift gate.
- Outer door handles and side protector moldings coated in the same color as the body.
- Jacquard moquette seat surface originally used for the 2.5-liter V6 deluxe model.
- Front seat armrests, driver's seat front tilt and hip-point lifter.
- Optional AV navigation system and special audio sound system incorporating a high-powered amplifier and nine speakers.
[Features only in "Urban Break S"]
- Front, side, and rear under-spoilers and rear roof spoiler.
- Front fog lamps and 15-inch aluminum wheels.
Note: All features are equipped as a standard on each model except an AV navigation system and special audio sound system incorporating a high-powered amplifier and nine speakers.

2. Enhanced standard equipment
- Air filter with aldehyde removal (all models).
- 16-inch tires, aluminum wheels and front fog lamps for an even sportier appearance; audio system incorporating a high-powered amplifier and nine speakers and an auto cruise control system for more comfortable driving experience (Deluxe "L").
- CD player ("Sports," the best-selling model).
- High-capacity batteries and anti-frozen wiper motors (New for all two-wheel-drive models. All the four-wheel-drive models have been already cold-weather-enhanced).

3. New color schemes
- Wider color variation: six outer panel color choice for all models.
- Two new outer panel colors, Pure White and Sunlight Silver Metallic.
- Black Mica coated aerodynamic parts available on "Sports" and "Urban Break S" models.
- Two two-toned outer panel colors: Pure White & Silky Pearl Mica and Sunlight Silver Metallic & Gentry Silver Metallic available on certain models.

4. Revised model configuration
- The following grade name changes have occurred: Standard MPV to B; Package G to G; Package Sports to Sports; and Package L to L.
- The Standard four-wheel-drive model has been removed from the lineup.

- Suggested Retail Prices (Sales tax not included) (Unit: 1,000 yen)

Drive Engine Model Tokyo; Nagoya;
Osaka; Hiroshima
Sapporo Sendai Yamaguchi Fukuoka
2WD 2.0-liter:
B 2,078 2,123 2,099 2,096 2,103
Urban Break 2,208 2,253 2,229 2,226 2,233
Urban Break S 2,298 2,343 2,319 2,316 2,323
G 2,298 2,343 2,319 2,316 2,323
Sports 2,498 2,543 2,519 2,516 2,523
L 2,668 2,713 2,689 2,686 2,693
4WD 2.5-liter:
G 2,548 2,593 2,569 2,566 2,573
Sports 2,738 2,783 2,759 2,756 2,763
L 2,918 2,963 2,939 2,936 2,943

* Add 26 for two-toned outer panel color models.
* All the models are cold-weather enhanced.
* Four-wheel-drive cold-weather models are equipped with high-capacity batteries, anti-frozen wiper motors and heat-defrosting side mirrors.

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New 2.0-liter engine models

Mazda Motor Corporation unveils two upscale MPV models, "Urban Break S" and "Urban Break," and enhanced features for all other existing models, available at Mazda and Mazda Anfini dealers throughout Japan.

Mazda MPV ES
The MPV is a stylish minivan that fully embodies Mazda's brand personality, "stylish," "insightful" and "spirited." Combining a stylish exterior with a versatile-seating insightful interior, MPV has remained popular with customers since it was first introduced in 1999. Its monthly average sales volume in Japan in the first half of this year was 4,550 units, while the company's initial forecast was 3,000 units.

The "Urban Break S" and "Urban Break" are upscale MPV models that evolve from the popular limited edition Briza and the former special specification model Urban Break, respectively. Based on the two-wheel-drive and 2.0-liter engine "B" model, both new models feature popular equipment, including a CD player and dark-tinted glass as a standard. Additionally, the "Urban Break S" features aerodynamic parts-"under-spoilers" at front, side and rear-and 15-inch aluminum wheels for a sportier look. With these new 2.0-liter engine models, the MPV series can provide customers with an even broader array of choices.

Moreover, all MPV models now feature a standard air filter with aldehyde removal function to keep the interior comfortable and clean. Another model, the 2.5-liter engine Deluxe "L," offers a number of new features, including standard equipment 16-inch tires, aluminum wheels and front fog lamps for a sportier appearance, an audio system with a high-powered amplifier and nine speakers, and an auto cruise control system for a more comfortable driving experience.

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