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Report: Honda, Mazda, Nissan, Toyota, and Subaru form alliance to speed up car development

PHOTO: Honda, Mazda, Nissan, Toyota

The global auto industry is a very competitive one—at times, even cut-throat. It isn’t uncommon, though, to see rivals teaming up in order to address a common concern.

According to a report by Nikkei Asia, some of Japan’s biggest carmakers have formed a new alliance with the goal of speeding up car development and lowering costs.

The new alliance reportedly already includes Honda, Mazda, Nissan, Toyota, and Subaru, as well as companies in the electronics industry such as Panasonic, Denso, and Mitsubishi Electric.

The partnership will be promoting a ‘model-based’ development strategy, which will see parts rendered digitally to allow manufacturers to run a virtual car through simulations—a style that is more financially viable than building working prototypes. Mazda has been applying this approach as early as the 2000s, the report highlights.

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The report adds that coming up with an industry standard for model-based development eliminates the need for suppliers to adhere to each brand’s requirements, leading to reduced costs.

“We don’t have the luxury of time to iron out differences,” Mazda senior innovation fellow Mitsuo Hitomi said during a press conference. “We will improve efficiency where we can so we can focus on investing in such areas as environmental technologies.”

Less cost for the car manufacturers and a speedier development process? This sounds like a win-win situation for everyone involved, including the consumers. Anyone else here excited to see this new alliance get to work?

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PHOTO: Honda, Mazda, Nissan, Toyota
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