One of Mazda’s Biggest Problems Could Soon Be History

If there’s one thing that most Mazda customers dislike, it’s arguably the infotainment system. The graphics are boring, the screen lacks touch capability (except when Android Auto or Apple CarPlay is on), and the menus are rather frustrating to navigate using the rotary controller on the centre console.

The latest models are no different, including the CX-50 and CX-90, not to mention the CX-70 that’s set to debut on January 30 and slotting between the two.

But here’s some encouraging news out of Japan: Nikkei Asia is reporting that future Mazda vehicles will share new in-vehicle software and hardware systems with Toyota. That includes the operating system for the infotainment and driver displays, as well as the electronic control unit and wiring harnesses. 

The same media outlet also claims that electric vehicles launched by Mazda from 2027 will have in-car systems that are 90 percent identical to those in Toyotas (pictured below is the Toyota bZ4X).

Photo: Guillaume Rivard

The idea, of course, is to significantly lower development costs. Mazda is a small automaker, remember, but it still aims to have seven or eight EVs in its global range by the end of the decade, as big boss Masahiro Moro announced in recent weeks.

Strictly from a software point of view, Mazda could save hundreds of millions of dollars by teaming up with Toyota.

The two companies have an ongoing partnership that goes back several years. They worked together on the Mazda2 and Toyota Yaris, while their joint-venture assembly plant in Alabama currently builds the CX-50 and Corolla Cross. The former is expected to add a hybrid variant using Toyota tech for the 2025 model year.

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