Unlike other robots of the time, which included expensive computerised automation systems, Volkswagen's creation required a human to control the robot from within. This allowed them to cut thousands off the price, rendering Mazinger Z overwhelminingly popular with the low-paid masses, and indeed the word Mazinger is German for The People's Robot.
Other areas in which Volkswagen saved for the consumer were in the removal of the robot's shock-proofing, and only providing enough weaponry to level a small dog as opposed to a small city. There was initially outrage from consumer associations at the robot's glaring weakness to electrical attacks, but this died down after Volkswagen bribed several key figures in each organisation with their latest Beetle models. Nevertheless they were forced to add a warning to subsequent units indicating that they were not for use during thunderstorms.
The Mazinger Z economy robot was sold alongside the robot Great Mazinger, the sports model. Volkswagen also put in a tender with their Mazinkaiser deluxe super edition model for the newest Popemobile, but it was declined.
- Rocket Punch
Mazinger Z was originally given the ability to jettison its fists solely to make it lighter for enhanced fuel economy. Consumer research during the test period found that many people had accidentally demolished nearby cars during the jettison process, and the ability was moved from the Feature list to the Weapons list.
- Photon Power Beam
Mazinger Z had laser pointers mounted in its eyes, which could be used to blind people. If the extra Mazinfyer magnifying glass had been purchased, they could be used in conjunction with it to set thin pieces of paper alight.
- Rust Hurricane
A fierce breeze of oxygen could be vented from the grille on Mazinger Z's face, which, given enough time, could theoretically rust iron. In practice this wasn't often used because the supply of air ran out in a matter of seconds, and it could take anywhere from ten minutes up to half an hour to rebuild its supply for another blast. Normally Rust Hurricane ended up being used to try to put out fires started with the Photon Power Beams.
- Breast Fire
Internally, Mazinger Z's massive heatsinks are moved from its steam boiler to its breastplate. Anything getting too close would become severely scalded by the high temperatures. In the meantime, LEDs on the outside of Mazinger Z's breastplate would create the illusion that it was firing some kind of beam, to make the attack look more powerful than it actually was. This attack's power also depended on how long Mazinger Z had been running; too soon after activation and the boiler wouldn't have built up enough heat to melt an icecube. There was also a problem in which if the attack was used for too long, the boiler would overheat and explode, destroying Mazinger Z from the inside.
After complaints about Mazinger Z's limited movement capabilities, Volkswagen created several addons for it. The first were Jet Boots which allowed it to propel itself underwater. These required the Mazinger Z to be returned to the factory for two weeks for the installation, and they also used oxygen from the pilot's control vehicle as fuel.
After complaints about the quality of the Jet Boots, and that the Mazinger Zs needed to be able to fly, Volkswagen created the Jet Scrander. The original was of such superb craftsmanship that Volkswagen decided that to copy it would be a crime. As such they rented it out for $5 an hour, on a first-come first-served basis.