Mazda is to provide three Demio (2) models to the Tsukuba environmental style test project in Japan, collaborating with Itochu Corporation and other companies in conjunction with the city on a joint project to test a low-carbon transport system which uses clean energy.

The project is scheduled to start in March 2010 in Tsukuba city, near Tokyo.

The project aims to comprehensively assess a low-carbon energy network composed of electric vehicles (EVs), rapid chargers, fixed battery stations, solar panels and a car sharing service. Mazda will provide the three cars for conversion to EVs, and will assist in determining specifications and evaluating vehicle performance.

The main objectives of the project are to test the viability of re-using EV batteries in fixed battery stations, and to develop a system to reuse EV batteries, including remote battery monitoring technology.

The project will also look to accelerate the establishment of a low-carbon transport society, introduce an EV car sharing system based at convenience stores and test an integrated contactless smart card payment system for the rapid chargers and the car sharing service.