Mazda Going Upscale?
Following the trail blazed (rather successfully) by Porsche AG, Mazda is considering a line of designer goods, to elevate their brand.
The Porsche Design Group sells a wide range of upscale products including custom-built BlackBerry smartphones, titanium reading glasses, $475 driving shoes and $900 puffy down vests. Each comes with the Porsche name, and helps to cultivate the brand’s premium image. Now Mazda is considering a similar idea, to help push the brand’s image in the minds of consumers upwards while simultaneously increasing brand awareness, exclusivity and revenues.
The Mazda Design project already has an artsy looking metal and leather chair. If the company goes ahead with the project, it, and other items could be on the market in the next couple of years. The chair, called the Kodo Chair, referring to Mazda’s curvy design language is a four-legged recliner that brings to mind the form-fitting cockpit of a race car. It was exhibited at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile, an important global furniture fair in Milan last year. At that time, Mazda said in a press release: “Painstakingly crafted, there are distinct parallels between the chair and Mazda models with the Kodo design, such as the ready-to-pounce, forward-leaning stance conveying the sudden release of pent-up energy.”
It’s yet to be determined whether or not Mazda has the cachet to market designer goods the way that Porsche does. If they are successful, a line of stylish, avant-garde products may indeed help the brand to cultivate a more premium, edgy image, and help lift the brand from the mainstream. This seems to be part of Mazda’s agenda, as it raises transaction prices, slashes incentives and improves the resale value of it’s vehicles. Better-appointed interiors and styling are helping too.
Mazda has not yet committed to a line of upscale goods yet, but the strategy seems to work for luxury brands, and there is a lot of potential for the Mazda Design brand.
By Linda Aylesworth – car-news.ca