Autozam (Mazda) sold the mid-size sedan called the Autozam Clef from 1992 until 1994. The term "clef" refers to a musical notation and was used by Mazda to indicate that the Clef was a benchmark for other Autozam products. While the Clef shared mechanical similarities with the Mazda Cronos, it had distinct bodywork and rear side window designs.
The Clef and Mazda Cronos both had the same width measurements and shared the 2.5 L V6 engine. In Japan, dimensions like width, length, and engine displacement are important because of regulations that result in consumers paying an additional annual tax for larger vehicles. These dimensions also affect the amount of annual road tax owed.
Since the Clef was the highest-end sedan at Autozam, which started out as a dealer of affordable products for Japanese consumers, its width became a concern. This is because Japanese buyers had to pay yearly taxes based on the width of their cars. The Clef was quite similar to other Mazda GE cars, so Japanese buyers who wanted a wide Mazda car could choose from several options, and the Clef was not usually their top choice. Read more
At the time, only the Clef from Autozam surpassed the width requirement, as all other Autozam vehicles were either superminis or fell under the kei class.