MAZDA could introduce its first plug-in hybrid vehicle in 2021, two years after its first electric car is set to arrive.
Speaking at the launch of the new CX-5, the company’s UK managing director, Jeremy Thomson, said: ‘We’ve said that by 2019 we’ll have an electric vehicle in the range globally and we’re looking at whether by 2021 we could have a plug-in hybrid solution as well.’
He also added that Mazda was considering the possibilities of hydrogen-fuelled vehicles.
‘Mazda has always had an interest in hydrogen power, as well,’ he said. ‘We have presented cars to the media that utilise hydrogen as a fuel and I think, like all manufacturers, we are looking at the options.’
However, Thomson said that although he expects Mazda to be ‘very, very strong’ in the alternatively-fuelled vehicle market, he said the company needs to focus on what customers currently want.
‘It’s important to concentrate on the 95 per cent of the market that exists today and be a fast follower once it’s clearer what the successful solutions could be. We need to be very responsive and receptive to customer – and indeed legislative – movement in those areas.
‘Practically, for cars like the CX-5, which has been 85 per cent diesel in the past, I don’t expect that to dramatically change, but I think maybe in the generations to come we’ll see a gradual blending of the different fuel technologies.’
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