Tie-ups and partnerships within the motor industry are nothing new, but in recent times they’ve certainly become more important.

There’s the Renault-Nissan Alliance, PSA Peugeot-Citroën (and by extension, the DS brand, too) and of course the Volkswagen Group, which seems to have turned commonly shared parts and platforms into an art form.

So it’s little surprise, then, to see Toyota increasing its technical partnership with Mazda. To many, the logical flow of information - at least for the forseeable future - will focus around Toyota’s plug-in hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell technology, in return for Mazda’s efficient Skyactiv engines.

For customers, the news is about as good as it comes. It means you’ll finally be able to buy a hybrid Mazda in the not too distant future. Although the company has been trying to develop its own electrification methods for some time now, it appears to have lacked the resources to ‘go it alone’ and so needs a larger partner.

Good, too, is the thought of a Toyota (and, by extension, a Lexus) powered by one of Mazda’s Skyactiv engines, although quite how BMW - Toyota’s other technical partner and a key supplier of its diesel engines - feels about that is unknown.