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Mazda plans for further fleet growth following sharp rise in user-chooser demand

New car sales in the three months April-June, 2014 – the first quarter of Mazda's 2014/15 financial year – increased by more than 850 units (25%) with fleet registrations accounting for 71% of the growth.

Almost two-thirds of the increase in fleet sales came in the core corporate segment – end-user fleets and contract hire and leasing companies – which excludes daily rental registrations, Motability and captive registrations.

Demand in the quarter saw total fleet sales rise more than 50% versus quarter one 2013/14 accounting for 1,775 registrations –a 24% share of total Mazda sales of almost 7,400 units.

Mazda head of fleet Steve Tomlinson said: ‘User-chooser demand is driving Mazda's fleet performance. The Mazda6 has a proven record as a popular company car over many years, but this year's launch of the all-new Mazda3 is proving to be a compelling proposition for drivers.’

Tomlinson added that he is optimistic that with these models, along with the CX-5 – which also offers the emission-cutting, fuel-saving SKYACTIV technology, 2014/15 fleet sales will beat last year's.

Tomlinson said: ‘Allied to the on road performance of the cars across the Mazda range and the fact that models are well-specified, we anticipate corporate demand, particularly from user-choosers, to continue to increase in 2014 and into 2015.’

Meanwhile the brand also recently revealed its forthcoming Mazda2 supermini whilst the MX-5 will make its global reveal in September.

Mazda added that it plans to continue to focus on further growing its core fleet customer base in the coming months. Last year core fleet accounted for 57% of the marque's fleet business compared with an industry average of 43% and in 2014/15 it is looking to increase that figure to close to 80%.

Tomlinson said: ‘Mazda more than doubled fleet sales in 2013/14 to 8,300 and that was due to demand from the core fleet sector. Our performance in that critical segment is already significantly stronger than the industry as a whole and we are looking to maintain that focus.’

The news comes as Mazda reports a sharp rise in sales in Europe for the first six months of the year, outpacing the market and helping it to boost its market share.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.