Mazda wants to move away from the mass market and move more upmarket to take steps closer to the Acura and Infiniti.
If Mazda wants to get to this level then they will have to make a progressive image move or they might end up along the same lines as the Kia K900. Mazda just cannot move into the luxury division as Honda did when they launched the Acura or Nissan did with the Infiniti. They simply don’t have the money and they don’t have the money or the scale to be able to do so.
Mazda doesn’t offer all-electric vehicles or hybrids, so this means they are going to have to make the move to the luxury segment along the same lines as Porsche did and offer a range that is narrow. Porsche are now well-known for their big portfolio but they do have the 911 series to fall back onto. Even so the success didn’t just happen overnight.
But if Mazda does want to move closer to Mercedes, Audi or BMW they are going to have to start off slow. Before they are able to they will have to go up against Lexus, Infiniti, Acura and Genesis first.
Luckily Mazda has a good formula with the Mazda 6 and 3 and so they can take on the Lexus LS along with the Infiniti Q50 thanks to the Kodo design language. They began to make the move upmarket with the 2016 Mazda CX-9 and followed with the Mazda MX-5 RF.
The 2018 Mazda CX-5 really does need to lose the looks that are bland and then move to be similar to the CX-9. Should they do so they are going to be a step closer to going into the premium market and it is thought that the rest of the line-up would follow on.