Toyota Expands Tie-Up With Mazda to Share Car Technology

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Toyota Expands Tie-Up With Mazda to Share Auto Technology
Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota Motor Corp., left, and Masamichi Kogai, president of Mazda Motor Corp., shake hands during a news conference in Tokyo. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

Toyota Motor Corp. and Mazda Motor Corp. agreed to broaden their partnership to share car technologies, potentially including new projects on fuel efficiency and safety.

The two Japanese automakers will set up a joint committee that will evaluate ways to utilize each other’s strengths, according to a joint press release issued Toyota and Mazda today. The partnership will result in “more appealing cars,” they said, without elaborating.

The latest agreement will build on previous cooperation between the two companies, under which Mazda licensed Toyota’s hybrid technology and some Toyota compact cars were produced at a Mazda factory in Mexico. Toyota’s President Akio Toyoda said today that the two companies shared the same vision and have earned trust through individual projects, and the time was ripe for them to collaborate to make better cars for the future.

Toyota in January said it will make about 5,680 patents related to fuel-cell technology available royalty-free through 2020, to help speed the adoption of hydrogen-powered cars. While other automakers are investing in developing vehicles that run on alternative power, Mazda has focused on refining engine performance and has supplied its Skyactiv fuel-efficient technology to Nissan Motor Co.

Mazda is not considering a financial alliance with Toyota for now, Chief Executive Officer Masamichi Kogai said in Tokyo today.

Both Toyota’s Toyoda and Mazda’s Kogai today declined to comment on the possible products that will result from the partnership.

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