It even lapped some of Great Britain's most iconic racetracks along the way
Mazda has taken a completely stock MX-5 Miata and driven it 1,000 miles around the UK to four separate race tracks where it completed laps, all while running on a zero fossil fuel sustainable fuel.
Utilizing SUSTAIN, a 100% sustainable fuel created by Coryton, the Miata completed laps at Oulton Park in England, Knockhill in Scotland, Anglesey Circuit in Wales, and Kirkistown in Northern Ireland over the course of a week. The goal of the project is to highlight how, through many different technologies, we can reduce the CO2 emissions from every car. Mazda and others have been on a mission to save the combustion engine for years now, and sustainable fuels will be a part of the solution to achieving climate neutrality.
Like Toyota, Mazda wants to take a multi-solution approach to attack the climate crisis. This means employing mild hybrid vehicles like the M hybrid, all-electric vehicles like the MX-30, Plug-in hybrids such as the CX-60 PHEV, and even SPCCI-powered cars (e-Skyactiv X Spark Controlled Compression Ignition) like the Mazda 3 and CX-30.
Sustainable fossil-free synthetic fuels are going to be a crucial link in this chain. According to David Richardson, director at Coryton, the project "combined a great car with sustainable fuel to lower more than just lap times. Drop-in sustainable fuels are ready now for everyday road cars with internal combustion engines."
The technology has been in development for some time, and Richardson says that it's now ready t go, highlighting 36 million combustion vehicles on British roads that can start reducing CO2 emissions as of right now. "The product and technology are ready to go - the industry just needs support to help scale up operations, which can be done gradually."
The place experimental tech usually starts and excels in is motorsport, which is why it makes sense Mazda would lean into a project like this and partner with Coryton Fuels. Coryton is a leading supplier of bespoke fuels, tailor-making 4,000 unique blends per year for all matters of different applications from jet engines to race cars. Coryton SUSTAIN then focuses on developing the fuels needed to push for a net zero impact.
The future of sustainability needs to draw people in, it needs to be fun. Without the buy-in from consumers, this technology won't have a chance. Motorsport is where automakers can connect with consumers, and a vehicle like the Miata can bridge the gap even further.
The Miata is fun and efficient at its core, and Mazda mustn't do anything to upset the balance or risk incurring the wrath of the car's enthusiasts. This means whatever fuel or drivetrain changes it makes must be carefully thought out. Luckily, it seems the eco-fuel at least doesn't hinder its economy, with the vehicle nabbing 45.6 mpg while driving between racetracks. It's the perfect poster child for a sustainable combustion future.
Mazda's multi-pronged approach opens up many options. The company recently revealed that it would invest over 11 million dollars into EV production worldwide, as its recent electric offerings like the MX-30 haven't been enough. Most would see this as the beginning of the end as many companies have decided to go full electric, but we can rest easy knowing Mazda is instead looking at many solutions to the problem, and that means the automaker's combustion engines will live on. Whether that's the case for the next-gen MX-5, however, is still up for debate.