Mazda Motor Corporation, in collaboration with Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd and Aisin Takaoka Co, Ltd., has become the first automaker to successfully develop vehicle components using 1800MPa ultra-high tensile steel.

The super strength steel debuts in the all-new Mazda CX-5 crossover SUV that will commence its global launch in early 2012.

The vehicles will be powered by Mazda's next-generation 2.2-litre clean diesel engine. The breakthrough 'SKYACTIV-D 2.2' is the world's first passenger vehicle diesel engine to pass Japan's Post New Long-Term Emissions Regulations without the need for expensive nitrogen oxide (NOx) after-treatment technology.

Mazda's new SKYACTIV body structure production technology uses 1800MPa ultra-high tensile steel to fabricate bumper beams, which fit inside the front and rear bumpers and mitigate damage in the event of a collision. The bumper bars are 4.8kg lighter yet 20% stronger than previous versions and are a key part of Mazda's next-generation, lightweight and highly rigid vehicle architecture.

Reducing the weight of bumper beams is particularly important because, as they are incorporated into the body structure at the farthest point from the vehicle's centre of gravity, their weight has a considerable effect on dynamic performance and responsiveness.