TOKYO - Toyota Motor Corp. will supply hybrid technology used in the Prius to Mazda Motor Corp., enabling the fellow Japanese automaker to build its first hybrid sedan.
Mazda will develop and produce a hybrid vehicle in Japan with plans to start selling the model by 2013 in Japan, the companies said Monday.
The alliance lets Mazda avoid costs for developing hybrid technology on its own, while allowing Toyota to cut costs of hybrid production by increasing output of hybrid parts. "It's a win-win relationship for both companies," said Koji Endo, managing director at Advanced Research Japan in Tokyo.
As demand for hybrid, electric and other next-generation cars increases, smaller carmakers like Mazda may find it too expensive to develop the technology alone. Mazda made the request for the alliance last year, said Mazda executive vice president Masaharu Yamaki.
Toyota currently provides Nissan Motor Co. with hybrid- related technology, and signed a cross-licensing agreement with Ford in 2004.