Thailand’s Board of Investment (BoI) has greenlighted Mazda’s 11.48 billion baht investment application for locally-assembled hybrid vehicles.
The BoI is scheduled to have a board meeting with Mazda today, chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.
President of Mazda Sales Thailand, Chanchai Trakarnudomsuk said that the investment plan will include the assembly of finished hybrid vehicles and five key components: batteries, traction motors, battery management services, AC/DC converters, and inverters.
"Mazda is ready to implement the plan to become a building block for all eco-friendly vehicles. Thailand has to start producing hybrid versions before improving the local industry and marketing plug-in hybrids and battery EVs in the future," he told BangkokPost.
Mazda Axela Hybrid pictured
Thai motorists can expect more incentives for hybrid vehicles in the near future as the Thai government is currently working on improving the hybrid vehicle scheme to be fairer and more competitive for manufacturers.
Hiroshi Inoue, the president of Mazda Southeast Asia said, "For Thailand, Mazda is considering the country's power generation structure, 80% of which relies on fossil-based fuels, so the local market cannot support all battery EVs that will consume electricity, which would require power plants to release much more CO2 to generate power."
Mazda aims to offer EV options for all of its models by 2030. The company currently offers the Mazda 3 as a hybrid in Japan, where the 3 is known as the Axela.
Mr Inoue also added that sales in Southeast Asia is expected to increase to 200,000 units by 2023, primarily led by Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.