Toyota Motor Corp. and Mazda Motor Corp. are involved in talks to cooperate on electric vehicles and connected cars, Automotive News site reported in recent days.
The two companies have been in discussions about ten potential areas of cooperation that will allow them to cope with technological trends shaking up the auto industry.
Executive Vice President of Mazda, Akira Marumoto, admitted the talks were taking place at a briefing given in Tokyo, but did not elaborate on the details.
Toyota and Mazda entered into an agreement last year that was intended to mark the start of a “mutually beneficial long term partnership”. Under the terms of the agreement, a committee would be set up to “evaluate how best to utilize each company’s respective strengths” with a view to developing a “broad and meaningful collaboration”.
Reuters reported at the time that collaboration would include advanced safety systems and alternative powertrains. Mazda would receive fuel cell and hybrid technology from Toyota in exchange for its highly efficient Skyactiv gasoline and diesel engines.
Toyota President Akio Toyoda said of the agreement: “Mazda has proven that it always thinks of what is coming next for vehicles and technology, while still managing to stay true to its basic carmaking roots. I am delighted that our two companies can share the same vision and work together to make cars better.”
The two also share a factory in Guanajuato, Mexico, that produces the Mazda 2 sedan and its near-identical twin, the Toyota Yaris iA. Toyota has not commented on the talks with Mazda.