So, will it be a hybrid?
It has been a little over a week since Mazda's RX-Vision concept debuted at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show, wowing the world in the process. The concept car on display looked damn good but there wasn't really much information given about it. As happens at auto shows information started to trickle out. We learned it'll sit on a revised MX-5 platform and that 50 engineers are working on the SkyActiv-R rotary engine. Thanks to Australia's CarGuide we now know a bit more about the engine that will sit in the new RX.
We don't have power figures but do know the new rotary engine will make its debut without the aid of electrification. This news comes courtesy of Mazda global research and development boss Kyoshi Fujiwara. CarsGuide asked about electrification playing a part and Fujiwara was blunt. "I want to introduce new rotary without electrification first. If I introduce with both, people will say electrification helped the rotary engine." Okay, so electric aid is out, at least in the beginning. So no hybrid RX-9, but what about a diesel variant? Nope, that's also not an option. So that would leave turbocharging. "Turbocharger is one of the big contributor for future rotary engines," Fujiwara said. For those keeping score that's no diesel, no hybrid and yes to a turbo.
While the RX-8 didn't pack a turbocharger the RX-7 did. Turbochargers have been featured on Wankel Rotaries since the Mazda Cosmo coupe back in 1982. As such this news isn't too shocking, especially since reports of a new turbo rotary have been around for a while. Still, we're excited to hear it from someone at Mazda with a name as opposed to an anonymous source.