If you have seen the movie “Minority Report,” it gives you a good idea of what the future of autonomous driving could look like. The driverless car industry has split autonomous driving technology into five levels. What you see in the movies, is level 5, meaning no human interaction required. Though many other automakers are working towards this goal, Mazda is taking a unique approach to vehicle autonomy.
Mazda has long been focused on giving drivers a thrilling driving experience. While having a car that can drive itself is a novel idea, it doesn’t offer any hands-on thrills. Instead, Mazda is focusing its future autonomous driving technology on being a supplemental function.
The Mazda Co-Pilot System would only activate if the driver needed help. For example, if the driver suffered a seizure or was attempting to drive while drunk.
Mazda deputy general manager Matsuhiro Tanaka articulated the company’s vision for autonomous tech. “What we are focused on is that it always has to be the joy of driving that comes first, then, should anything happen to the driver that renders the situation dangerous, then the autonomous driving functions will kick in and take them to a safe place.”
Tanaka went on to say that Mazda isn’t trying to develop a new technology. It is simply working to incorporate the existing technology in an innovative new way that will help protect the driver and everyone else on the road.
For more exciting news from this progressive automaker, contact us here at Wantagh Mazda. Or better yet, stop by in person to take a shiny new 2020 Mazda for a whirl.
Mazda has recently announced an upcoming offering on their 2020 vehicle lineup that is both new and a return to the past. Mazda plans to make use of a modern take on the Rotary engine, one of the earliest forms of internal combustion engines widely used in the early 1900s. Mazda will do this by installing Rotary engines as a range extender on their electric vehicles. Rotary engines were well known at the time of their most common use to be efficient and reliable for their size, but scaling up for more powerful vehicles proved difficult. As such, their use fell out of common practice.
Upscaling isn’t an issue when talking
about a range extender for a mostly electric vehicle, so Mazda engineers have
harnessed this reliability and flexibility and incorporated it into their
upcoming model lineup. Also working for the Rotary engine’s favor is that they
are nearly vibration free and have comparatively few moving parts compared to
modern piston engines. The engine’s compact size also allows it to potentially
be hidden away in a lower compartment along with the vehicle’s installed
By 2030, as part of their “Sustainable
Zoom-Zoom 2030” long-term technology development program, Mazda will have 95
percent of their vehicles as combustion-electric hybrids with the remaining 5
percent being purely electric.
Mazda CEO Masahiro Moro said point blank that “No steering wheel is not an option for us,” and went on to say that autonomous tech should be there to help drivers enjoy the car more, not make driver input impossible.
There are five levels of automation, ranging from hands-on automation like Adaptive Cruise Control (Level 1) and full autonomy in certain situations (Level 3) to Level 5, the steering wheel-free level that Mazda prefers to avoid.
Moro says that Level 4, where the car can drive safely in all situations without driver input, is as far as Mazda will go, and only if the technology allows “driving dynamics between the car and the driver.”
Mazda autonomous drive technology is still in development and won’t be available on Mazda vehicles for some time, but here at Wantagh Mazda, we’re thrilled that Mazda is dedicated to balancing its values with evolving technology and needs.
At this year’s Tokyo Motor Show, Mazda released its new rotary-powered Mazda RX-VISION Concept. Powered by a next-gen, SKYACTIV-R engine, this elegant and aggressively-styled vehicle is a snapshot of the future, according to Mazda.
The first rotary-powered engine produced by Mazda came out in 1967; they have spent the 40+ decades since bettering, empowering, and perfecting this amazingly efficient technology.
The Mazda RX-VISION Concept is a rear-wheel drive sports car with one of the most innovative and distinguished KODO-proportioned exteriors. The rotary-powered engine means improved power output, increased fuel economy, and overall durability.
The style of the RX-VISION Concept just screams of “tomorrow.” It’s futuristic in design and even if you know nothing of engineering, you know that this vehicle is aerodynamic (and really really fast). This car is going to be a head-turner once it hits the road, though there are no official plans to begin mass production just yet.
Mazda is introducing a new smartphone app called Mazda Mobile Start, which promises to give Mazda owners more control over their vehicles. The suite of remote-control features allows users to remotely start their cars, lock and unlock the doors, find their car’s location, and set off the car alarm.
Mazda Mobile Start is currently only compatible with 2016 Mazda6 sedans and CX-5 crossovers, and can be purchased and installed at Mazda dealerships for $500. After the first year of subscription, the app will cost a yearly fee of $65 to keep active.
For those of us who live in particularly hot or cold climates, the remote engine start alone is worth the cost. The car can run idle for 30 minutes, cooling or heating the car based on the climate settings that were input when the car was turned off. Additionally, the ability to track down your car in a crowded parking lot without having to set off the panic alarm is a welcome feature. And of course, that panic button is there, just in case you need it.
“Mazda Mobile Start comes with more than just the features and functions of the app; it also comes with peace of mind,” said Trisha Quezada, manager, accessories, sales and marketing at MNAO in a statement. “Mazda Mobile Start was created with convenience and safety in mind to enhance the overall driving experience that matters so much to our customers.”
Stop by Wantagh Mazda today to learn more, and look for more Mazda vehicles to be compatible in the coming year.