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December 25, 2003
For Your Information

Mazda's Three Layer Wet Paint System Receives JSPMI Prize

Mazda Motor Corporation has been awarded the newly-established "Prize for Promoting Machine Industry" from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Machine Industry (Chairman: Shoichiro Toyoda) for the development of its "Three Layer Wet Paint System." With the environmentally friendly paint system recognised as an exceptionally significant technology, Mazda has received the "Minister of Trade, Economy and Industry Award." The award ceremony will be held on February 3 at the Tokyo Prince Hotel.

The Three Layer Wet Paint System simplifies the painting process by combining the primer coating process with that of top coating to deliver comprehensive environmental benefits. For instance, through application of this new technology volatile organic compounds (VOC) have been reduced by as much as 45 percent to meet the latest European regulations of 35g/m2. Concurrently, Mazda has cut CO2 emissions by more than 15 percent compared to the previous painting process, as well as achieving a significant reduction in cost. This technology is currently applied at Mazda's Hofu Plant #1 and #2 in the manufacturing of Atenza/Mazda6 and the recently launched Axela/Mazda3.

"This prize recognizes Mazda's originality and high level technical capabilities," said Mazda President and CEO Hisakazu Imaki. "Amidst increasing worldwide awareness of the importance of environmental protection, we have developed this new painting technology that successfully reduces both VOC and CO2 emissions. In the future we will continue our efforts to develop new technologies that support the building of products unique to the Mazda brand while contributing to the advancement of automotive technologies."

The Prize for Promoting Machine Industry recognizes companies, universities, research institutes and individuals that have achieved notable results in the area of research and development involving original, innovative and economical machine industry technologies and have contributed to the manufacturing of new products, improvement of product quality/performance and production streamlining through the successful application of these technologies. Presented by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Machine Industry (JSPMI), the award was newly established in 2003 after combining the former "Prize of Japan Society for the Promotion of Machine Industry" and "Prize for New Machine Developed by Small and Medium Enterprises." Mazda has been awarded the highest "Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Award" for the first time, while receiving eight times in its history a JSPMI award, such as the one for "Development of the Rotary Engine."

Technology applicable
Three Layer Wet Paint System.

Awardee (company)
Mazda Motor Corporation (President and CEO: Hisakazu Imaki).

Awardee (those who responsible for the technology)

Teruo Kanda, Staff Manager, Painting, Trim & Final Assembly Engineering Dept.
Masaki Kake, Assistant Manager, Painting, Trim & Final Assembly Engineering Dept.
Takakazu Yamane, Senior Research Engineer, Technical Research Center.
Tsutomu Shigenaga, Technical Research Center.
Toshiyuki Katayama, Assistant Manager, Body Development Dept.

Outline of technology

1. The Three Layer Wet Paint System combines the primer coating process into the top coat process. Primer, base coat and clear coat are applied in succession after which all layers are baked at once. This simplified process requires less energy, resulting in dramatic reduction in the amount of CO2 emitted.
2. With the application of all-new coating control technology and more efficient coating robots, equal paint thickness and improved coating efficiency are delivered. Mazda worked jointly with paint manufacturers to develop a new low solvent paint that delivers high coating stability to achieve successive coating of three layers. Comprehensively, the new system delivers significant improvement in coating quality, while reducing VOC emissions and costs.