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Julien Montousse Named Mazda North American Operations Design Director

IRVINE, Calif., Sept. 8, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) today announced the appointment of Julien Montousse as Director of Design at its Irvine, California-based design studio.

Montousse joined Mazda in 2009, heading up interior design at Mazda’s North American studio with long-term assignments at Mazda’s headquarters in Hiroshima, Japan. In that role, Montousse helped propel the production design process of Mazda’s award-winning sixth-generation lineup, including the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata and current-generation Mazda6, to achieve a true driver-centric cockpit experience.

In Montousse’s new position, he will oversee all of Mazda’s North American design operations, including next-generation vehicle design, exterior, interior and brand strategy development.

“Through our KODO—Soul of Motion design ethos, we’ve come so far to instill a premium aura throughout our sixth-generation lineup,” said Montousse. “I am honored to have been chosen to lead our efforts at MNAO, and I look forward to continuing to elevate the Mazda brand with advanced vehicle architectures, purposeful aesthetics and unique consumer experiences.”

“Julien has been instrumental in strengthening Mazda’s overall direction through his keen focus on creating driving atmospheres focused on the experience of driving,” said Masamitsu Koike, VP, R&D, MNAO. “He is an invaluable asset to have on our team and an excellent ambassador of the Mazda brand.”

Said Ikuo Maeda, Mazda global chief of design: “Julien brings to Mazda a deep understanding of form language that complements our worldwide design efforts and adds a layer of depth to KODO design that keeps pushing the boundaries in terms of sophistication and style. I congratulate him on his appointment and welcome him to the next chapter of his career as MNAO’s director of design.”

In his new position, Montousse will report directly to Koike.

Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through nearly 700 dealers. Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City. For more information on Mazda vehicles, including photography and B-roll, please visit the online Mazda media center at

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SOURCE Mazda North American Operations

For further information: Jacob Brown, Mazda North American Operations, (949) 727-6751, Eric Booth, Mazda North American Operations, (949) 727-6144