Mazda has shed more light on the development of its parts distribution network in North America, following last week's news that it has brought the number of facilities in the region to seven as it seeks to improve delivery times and reduce transport costs there. Four new parts distribution centres (PDCs) have opened since last June, with one closure last December at the Olive Branch PDC in Mississippi, all part of the drive for greater efficiency according to the carmakers.
Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) latest facility, which opened this month, is in Vancouver, in the Canadian state of British Colombia, and follows on from the opening of the Chicago Parts Distribution Center last October. The Chicago facility will also supply automotive parts to Canada as well as the Midwest, serving 125 dealers. It is using Black Horse carrier for those deliveries.
MNAO also opened facilities in Atlanta, Georgia last July and in Dallas Texas in June last year.
Caterpillar Logistics is managing all seven of Mazda's active PDCs (though the LSP said it was unable to comment this week on the services it was providing for the carmaker).
Speaking for Mazda, John Cunningham, group manager, PDC Operations & Transportation at MNAO, said: "The overall goal was to get closer to our major markets to improve our order-to-delivery time for our dealers/customers and reduce transportation costs," said.
The four new centres join Mazda's three existing PDCs in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and in the Canadian cities of Ontario and Toronto, and replace services lost by the closure of the Olive Branch facility.
"While Olive Branch was centrally located to our Midwest, Gulf and Southeast markets, the transit times and fuel cost were not favourable," Cunningham told Automotive Logistics. "Our three new PDCs in these key market address this issue.
MNAO oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support to nearly 900 dealers in the US, Canada and Mexico. Mazda's US vehicle sales in 2011 were up 9.1% over 2010, with nearly 250,500 vehicles sold.
"The addition of Vancouver also provided significant reduction in transit times and fuel cost to service western Canada," said Cunningham.
According to MNAO transit time improvements Western Canadian dealers now average a reduction of 3.5 days, while in the Midwest, Gulf, and Southeast the average reduction was 1.5 days with the new PDC network.