Five Mazda hybrid prototypes were donated by the Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) to the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD). These prototypes, which are the Mazda Tribute Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEV), are all clean-burning and are very fuel efficient.
The whole event took place at the Fire Station 27 in Hollywood, California. There was even a ceremony as part of it. The five prototypes are actually based on the Mazda Tribute compact SUV. These five are all part of the 30 vehicles that the company would be actually loaning to fire agencies all across Southern California like Orange County, Corona, San Bernardino, San Diego, and Riverside.
The donated prototype Tribute HEVs all came branded with the LAFC badge. These vehicles would be driven by the staff of the said fire department in various assignments throughout their area. Of course, they would be mostly used for non-emergency tasks that could include fire safety inspections, education programs, maintenance activities, and the like.
Jay Amestoy, MNAO’s vice president of public and government affairs, stated, “We wanted to give something back to the community with these Tribute Hybrid SUVs. Southern California firefighters are among the best in the country, and we’re proud to have them in our backyard. These men and women demonstrate courage, strength, and wisdom no a daily basis to protect the people who live in Los Angeles and it is a privilege for us to be able to partially repay their courageous efforts with the two-year loan of these Tribute HEVs.”
William Bammatre is the LAFC Fire Chief and he was one of the people who received the said vehicles. He even says, “We are so grateful to Mazda for their generous loan of these four-wheel-drive Tribute HEV prototypes. What makes this such a significant gesture by Mazda is that these are clean, fuel-efficient SUVs, which means we will reduce our operating costs while contributing to a healthier environment.”