Today was our relocation day to Hiroshima and our first item on the “to do” list was the Mazda Factory Museum Tour. This tour is completely free, however you need to book it in advance online. You cannot just show up.
It is truly free, the only thing Mazda request in return is that you don’t take photos anywhere onsite except inside the museum. That includes no photos from the bus that transports you around. In a way that’s such a pity as the truly interesting things are in the factory.
Mazda undersell this tour a little. It’s way more than a museum tour. They take you on a bus around the factory, over a bridge that is owned and exclusively used by Mazda and into part of the factory where you can observe Mazda cars being produced. The scale of the place is unbelievable. They have an internal bus service with 35 stops. The factory takes a significant amount of Hiroshima realestate
This is Hiroshima. The darker spaces is the factory. It extends for a few kilometres up the river on the right hand side.
It’s amazing to watch the robotics and the people assembling all the cars. I particularly liked the machine that inserts the windscreens into the cars as they move past on the line. Mazda have built this line so they can assemble multiple types of cars on the one production line.
How do I do this tour?
- Make sure you email them the list of names the night before.
- Take an eastbound train on the Sanyo or Kure line and get off at Mukainada Station.
- Walk out across the road into the head office
This is the building you are heading too, its visible from the station.
You can easily do this as a day tour from Kyoto if you don’t want to stay there overnight and you have a JR pass. Just the the 7.20 Hikari from Kyoto which gets to Hiroshima at 9.05 you have a few hours left in the day to visit the A-Bomb museum.
Here are the train details to get there direct from Kyoto. Getting from track 12 to track 7 is very simple and only takes minutes. We did the change over with time to spare.
At the Mazda head office it’s super efficient. They sign you in, give you a pass and you wait for the tour to start. There is even a café where you can buy a coffee and something to eat.
Got your luggage with you? No drama. Mazda even have free luggage storage onsite that was big enough to take my suitcase with room to spare
Yours truly sitting in one of the cars on display
Cafe in the building
There is a small shop at the end of the tour where you can get some Mazda branded merchandise and books. They were selling little model roadsters and CX5s for ¥400
A selection of the cars in the museum
Funniest quote from someone else on the tour when looking at a car decked out with a Calgary Olympics logo…. “What’s a Calgary?”. Use your imagination to guess that tourists nationality….
Mazda have a little display of their corporate logo made of tiny cars
Zoom Zoomed in :-
All in all, a great bit of corporate PR for Mazda and 2 hours well spent for you.