Mazda expects to beat its sales target for Europe this year as the car market in the region has been seeing a revival in recent months. Mazda’s European deliveries rose 24 percent in the first five months of 2014, more than triple the 6.9 percent full-year growth rate that the Japanese automaker plans in the region. For this year, Mazda is targeting sales of 170,000 vehicles in the region.
In 2013, Mazda’s deliveries rose 18 percent in Europe, in contrast to the market’s 1.8 percent decline, after the introduction of the all-new Mazda6 sedan in late 2012. This year the European car market is recovering from a six-year contraction that culminated in 2013 with the lowest sales in two decades.
Jeff Guyton, head of Mazda’s operations in the region, expects the European car market to grow modestly this year, by about 3 percent. “The industry has bottomed out and, hopefully from next year forward, we get a little bit more constant growth,” Guyton told Bloomberg.
The executive said he wants the Mazda6 to play a more important role in the company’s lineup, which in Europe is dominated by the CX-5 crossover and the Mazda3 compact car. Mazda is also looking into expanding its customer base to increase sales, with additional opportunities for the Mazda6 seen in company car fleets.