Mazda has announced the official pricing of its redesigned Mazda2 subcompact, the first model to be produced under Phase 2 of the government's eco-car programme.
The Mazda2 is priced at Bt675,000 to Bt790,000 for both the sedan and five-door hatchback models.
The company plans to sell as many as 30,000 units of the Mazda2 this year. In total, it plans to sell 50,000 vehicles in Thailand. Last year the company sold 34,326 vehicles here, and has a 4-per-cent market share.
Mazda invested Bt12 billion in the AutoAlliance Thailand (AAT) plant in Rayong to produce the Mazda2 for both domestic and export markets. Annual production capacity has been raised to 120,000 completely built-up units, with 60 per cent exported, and 38,000 completely knocked-down kits.
Meanwhile, a new transmission plant worth Bt11 billion has just started operation to produce Mazda SKYACTIV gearboxes for the AAT factory as well as other plants in the region.
Another Bt3 billion is being spent to build a new SKYACTIV engine plant.
Thailand is one of three global bases for Mazda2 production, apart from Japan and Mexico. Cars from Thailand will be exported to Asia-Pacific countries including Asean as well as Europe, said Hidesuke Takesuke Takezue, president of Mazda Sales Thailand Co.
He said auto sales in Thailand were expected to reach 900,000 units in 2015, with the main driving force being the continued growth of business professionals’ income. However, strict financial measures would affect pickup-truck sales.
"The Mazda2 marches into the subcompact-car market with premium standards, automatically raising the bar in the small-passenger-car market in Thailand," he said.
"The quality and design of the new Mazda2 is comparable to European vehicles. The design is attractive, the fuel economy is best-in-class thanks to the SKYACTIV clean diesel engine, and the safety standard is world-class.
I believe that Mazda has raised the benchmark in the Thai B-car and eco-car segments in many ways."
The Mazda2 is the first diesel-powered subcompact in the Thai market. Its 1.5-litre turbo-charged engine is capable of producing 105 horsepower and 250 newton-metres of torque.