Mazda is celebrating a triple victory at this year’s Automotive Brand Contest. In addition to the all-new Mazda CX-3 and Mazda’s Bike by KODO concept, the German Design Council’s jury distinguished the Japanese brand’s global design division with the coveted “Team of the Year” prize. The division led by Ikuo Maeda, Mazda’s global head of design, is responsible for the award-winning styling of the company’s current model generation. The award ceremony takes place at the Städel Museum in Frankfurt on 15 September, the first of two press days at the 2015 Frankfurt International Motor Show.
The “Team of the Year” winner is chosen for innovative and consistent brand design, and Maeda’s division is currently enjoying a zenith in the brand’s design history to date. Staff at the four Mazda design studios in Japan, Germany and the U.S. have been thriving with the KODO – Soul of Motion design theme, creating dynamic automotive design expressions and skilfully interpreting them for mass-production models like the CX-3.
Launched in June, the B-SUV was named “Best of the Best” in the Exterior Volume Brand category. A perfect embodiment of KODO, the CX-3 features flowing lines and a rear-leaning cabin above large wheels with a high beltline and powerful nose. It’s a winning combination that has already earned the model accolades such as a 2015 Red Dot award for outstanding design quality and Auto Zeitung’s Design Trophy 2015 in the SUV category.
The Bike by KODO concept, conceived for this year’s Milan Design Week, characterises how well KODO adapts beyond automobiles. Inspired like Mazda cars by the movements of animals in nature, this rendering dynamically expresses both power and finesse – a unique blend that won the track racer concept the contest’s Parts & Accessories category this year.
Initiated by the German Design Council, the Automotive Brand Contest honours outstanding product and communication design on an international level. Established as a foundation in 1953, the German Design Council is one of the world’s leading centres for design competence. Prizes are awarded in 15 regular as well as four special categories, with the winners selected by a jury of media, design and communications experts.