Toyota has refused to be drawn on whether it is in talks with rival Mazda over supplying the smaller company with parts for hybrid vehicles.

In a report by Reuters, a Toyota spokeswoman said: “We have not made any decision to supply our hybrid parts to Mazda.”

She went on to say that the company would not comment on any talks unless an official agreement had been reached.

Mazda is thought to be looking at its options with regards to hybrid technology – outsourcing development is reportedly one of the options being considered.

The company sells a hybrid Tribute model in the US – the small SUV is shared with Ford which sells its own version called the Escape.