This week has seen plenty of activity at Mazda’s production facility in Salamanca, Mexico, called Mazda de Mexico Vehicle Operation (MMVO). Production of the 2016 Mazda 2 subcompact began, the plant’s engine machining operations started up, and the company announced it will further expand the production capacity of this facility by March 2016.
MMVO started up earlier this year producing the Mazda 3 compact, and the company previously announced that the plant would eventually have a capacity of 230,000 units per year once the new Mazda 2 (Japanese-spec version pictured) joined the production line. Now that number has been revised again to 250,000 units in response to high demand for the company’s Skyactiv models including both the Mazda 2 and Mazda 3.
The 2016 Mazda 2 that has now begun rolling off the line in Mexico is a completely redesigned version of Mazda’s smallest model. It adopts the company’s Skyactiv engine and chassis technologies in a bid to increase efficiency, and went on sale in Japan this fall as the Demio. The new Mazda 2 should go on sale in the U.S. sometime in 2015, although we don’t yet know official specifications for our market. We expect our version of the Mazda 2 to be powered by a 1.5-liter Skyactiv gasoline four-cylinder engine.
We previously reported that the next-generation Toyota Yaris would also be built at this same facility in Mexico, as this subcompact is rumored to be twinned with the new Mazda 2. MMVO will reportedly produce around 50,000 units of the Yaris per year, although it’s unclear at this point whether that number is included in the new 250,000-unit annual capacity or not.