Mazda Motor Corporation (MMC) said its local sales and production company in Malaysia, Mazda Malaysia, had improved local production and launched the locally made redesigned CX-5 which it began producing on 29 August.

Before starting production of the latest CX-5, Mazda Malaysia spent about JPY2.3bn on an 'exclusive' paint shop for its 'designer' body colours (the KD kit contract assembly plant also builds cars for other automakers) and to automate part of the body welding process. These measures align new technology at the plant with those in the source country Ujina and Hofu'parent factories' in western Japan and will, the automaker said, "further enhance production quality".

Until now, the CX-5 assembled in Malaysia has been sold only there and in Thailand but the company now also plans exports to the Philippines, Indonesia, Cambodia and Myanmar.

"We see Malaysia as an important production base in the ASEAN region and, with the aim of establishing a sturdy production system, we've worked closely with our business partners to develop manufacturing of our cars here," said Masatoshi Maruyama, Mazda's managing executive officer in charge of global production and business logistics.

"In addition to enabling the production of cars in Soul Red Crystal and Machine Gray, colours that represent the brand, these new measures strengthen a consistent production framework based on our manufacturing concepts and technology. We will continue efforts to raise quality levels even higher and I'm confident that cars manufactured here will satisfy customers in every market."

Hiroshi Inoue, managing executive officer in charge of ASEAN business, said, "Customers in ASEAN markets are constantly raising the bar for our products, technology and quality standards. We see it as our mission to offer value that exceeds their expectations.

"Moving forward, we will continue working closely with our business partners to contribute to the development of the automotive industry in Malaysia."

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