Mazda sports cars pick up innovation award

The enormously popular drop-top, known for its fun driving dynamics helped along by a rear wheel drive layout has remained near the top of the sales charts for 20 years, and is now onto its third generation.

It is the first time the Automotive Achievement Award has been presented, and Mazda was chosen not just for the Mazda MX-5, but for several other innovative advances.

These include the new SKYACTIV petrol technology, which will be introduced in the Mazda2 supermini and Mazda3 family car in 2011, bringing CO2 emissions and fuel consumption down to class-leading levels for a petrol car.

The car maker was also praised for its advances in lightweight materials for its cars, rotary engines and its investigation into hydrogen power.

Mazda UK Managing Director Jeremy Thomson added: “We are truly delighted that Mazda has been awarded the Welsh Motoring Writers Automotive Achievement Award.

"This award is further confirmation of Mazda’s innovative spirit and willingness to try new things, which has led to the creation of some remarkable automotive technologies benefitting millions of Mazda motorists."

2010 marks the 90th anniversary of the founding of Mazda, and the 50th anniversary of its first sports car, a legacy continued by the MX-5 and RX-8 sports coupe.

WMW Chairman Huw Thomas said: “This was a wonderful way to celebrate Mazda’s achievements past and present. Mazda has a formidable legacy but is blazing a trail in contemporary automotive engineering. We are delighted to award it our inaugural award for Automotive Achievement”.