Tuesday, September 5, 2000

Mazda Digital Innovation (MDI)

Mazda Motor Corporation has begun Phase 3 of Mazda Digital Innovation (MDI), a revolutionary information technology system that will dramatically improve the quality and efficiency of vehicle development and manufacturing.

Mazda Digital Innovation
By introducing a wide range of virtual testing and upgrading Phase 1 and 2, Mazda aims to reduce vehicle development time after styling freeze from 18 months to 14 months for brand-new models. MDI also will help the company reduce development costs through increased efficiency.

Mazda launched MDI in 1996. Phase 1 and Phase 2 initiatives included the installation of an integrated CAD/CAM system and the use of cutting-edge 3D information systems in the overall development process.

MDI Phase 3 has two major objectives:

* To reduce vehicle development time and improve the quality of vehicle performance and durability by using 20 additional road simulators and advanced virtual testing simulation.
* To improve the availability and sharing of information for joint vehicle development with the Ford group.

With MDI Phase 3, Mazda plans to conduct virtual tests at the planning and designing stages of vehicle development before building prototype cars. Mazda will use virtual testing to cover all major areas, including durability, crashworthiness, handling stability, and NVH (Noise, Vibration and Harshness).

In addition, Mazda will use virtual testing to prove quality of major components such as engines, transmissions and suspensions. Mazda expects to reduce the number of prototype cars by 30% and testing time by 50%.

Mazda also plans to accelerate concurrent engineering within the company and with the Ford group and overseas suppliers through the Product Information Management (PIM) system. Using PIM, Mazda digitizes all information required for product development and production engineering, making vital information available to all who need it.

"Mazda considers MDI a core competency for our product development," said Phil Martens, managing director in charge of Product Planning, Design and Programs. "We will continue to strengthen MDI to increase our competitive strength."

Mazda plans to invest an additional 17.5 billion yen in the MDI Phase 3, bringing total spending to 41.0 billion yen.

Find more news and information at www.mazda.com

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