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Found 8 results

  1. There is a small group of enthusiasts that want to see the return of the rotary engine in a Mazda vehicle, preferably in a performance. We have reported on various rumors and news stories talking about the rotary engine making a comeback and then being shelved for one reason or another. It now seems the engine making a return, but not in the way many were hoping for. Speaking with Automotive News, Mazda's global powertrain head Mitsuo Hitomi said the engine would be used as a range-extender for an upcoming EV. A rotary engine is perfect for this application due to its compact size and providing enough juice to charge a battery. Akira Kyomen, Mazda's program manager for vehicle development said they are planning to launch an EV by 2019. The model would come in two different flavors - one being a pure electric and the other using a range extender. Kyomen said the range extender is seen as being necessary for North America and other markets due to the daily drive being much longer. Hitomi also confirmed that Mazda's engineers are working on a larger rotary engine that could power a sports car. The big hurdle isn't the tech, but making the business case for it. Mazda's question, Hitomi said, has been "whether the business conditions will be met or not … not the big technical issues. Are we going to really sell that many models of sports cars? There aren't that many auto companies selling multiple sports cars." Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  2. There is a small group of enthusiasts that want to see the return of the rotary engine in a Mazda vehicle, preferably in a performance. We have reported on various rumors and news stories talking about the rotary engine making a comeback and then being shelved for one reason or another. It now seems the engine making a return, but not in the way many were hoping for. Speaking with Automotive News, Mazda's global powertrain head Mitsuo Hitomi said the engine would be used as a range-extender for an upcoming EV. A rotary engine is perfect for this application due to its compact size and providing enough juice to charge a battery. Akira Kyomen, Mazda's program manager for vehicle development said they are planning to launch an EV by 2019. The model would come in two different flavors - one being a pure electric and the other using a range extender. Kyomen said the range extender is seen as being necessary for North America and other markets due to the daily drive being much longer. Hitomi also confirmed that Mazda's engineers are working on a larger rotary engine that could power a sports car. The big hurdle isn't the tech, but making the business case for it. Mazda's question, Hitomi said, has been "whether the business conditions will be met or not … not the big technical issues. Are we going to really sell that many models of sports cars? There aren't that many auto companies selling multiple sports cars." Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  3. Last October, Mazda revealed the RX-Vision concept. This concept featured a brand new rotary engine called SkyActiv-R. At the time, Mazda was keeping quiet on specifics of the engine. But it showed that Mazda was working on a next-gen rotary. Now, we have some clues as to the SkyActiv-R. autoevolution found a patent application filed by Mazda last fall and published last month by the U.S. Patent and Trademark office. The drawings in the application show the engine turned 180 degrees with the exhaust port on top and intake port on the bottom. This repositioning allows for minimal turbo lag thanks to the short distance from the exhaust port to the turbo. It also allows the engine to mounted lower in the vehicle to improve the center of gravity. Now this is only a patent application. It doesn't mean Mazda will put this exact engine into production. But for fans of the rotary engine, it gives them some hope that the engine will soon return. Source: autoevolution, USPTO View full article
  4. Last October, Mazda revealed the RX-Vision concept. This concept featured a brand new rotary engine called SkyActiv-R. At the time, Mazda was keeping quiet on specifics of the engine. But it showed that Mazda was working on a next-gen rotary. Now, we have some clues as to the SkyActiv-R. autoevolution found a patent application filed by Mazda last fall and published last month by the U.S. Patent and Trademark office. The drawings in the application show the engine turned 180 degrees with the exhaust port on top and intake port on the bottom. This repositioning allows for minimal turbo lag thanks to the short distance from the exhaust port to the turbo. It also allows the engine to mounted lower in the vehicle to improve the center of gravity. Now this is only a patent application. It doesn't mean Mazda will put this exact engine into production. But for fans of the rotary engine, it gives them some hope that the engine will soon return. Source: autoevolution, USPTO
  5. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 26, 2013 Some sad news for those hoping for another Mazda vehicle with the rotary engine. Masa-michi Koga, Mazda's new CEO tells Automotive News that for the rotary engine to become commercially viable, Mazda would need to sell around 100,000 vehicles a year. "No plans now. It has to be a viable commercial proposition. If we are going to adopt it, it has to be a product that can generate at least sales of 100,000 units a year. We have to be able to achieve a profit," said Kogai. Since Mazda pulled the plug on the RX-8 last year, rumors and speculation has been running rampant. Within the past few months, Mazda's former CEO expressed the idea of putting a rotary engine into a hybrid vehicle to generate electricity to charge the battery. There was also the rumor back in August which stated Mazda was hard at work on a new rotary engine that was expected to come out in 2015 or so. Now Koga doesn't fully slam the door shut on the rotary engine. He said that engineers are still researching rotary engines as they are able to run on a variety of fuels. "We are the first and only manufacturer to commercialize the rotary engine. In that respect, we have some responsibility. So please allow us to continue our research," said Kogai. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  6. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com November 26, 2013 Some sad news for those hoping for another Mazda vehicle with the rotary engine. Masa-michi Koga, Mazda's new CEO tells Automotive News that for the rotary engine to become commercially viable, Mazda would need to sell around 100,000 vehicles a year. "No plans now. It has to be a viable commercial proposition. If we are going to adopt it, it has to be a product that can generate at least sales of 100,000 units a year. We have to be able to achieve a profit," said Kogai. Since Mazda pulled the plug on the RX-8 last year, rumors and speculation has been running rampant. Within the past few months, Mazda's former CEO expressed the idea of putting a rotary engine into a hybrid vehicle to generate electricity to charge the battery. There was also the rumor back in August which stated Mazda was hard at work on a new rotary engine that was expected to come out in 2015 or so. Now Koga doesn't fully slam the door shut on the rotary engine. He said that engineers are still researching rotary engines as they are able to run on a variety of fuels. "We are the first and only manufacturer to commercialize the rotary engine. In that respect, we have some responsibility. So please allow us to continue our research," said Kogai. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  7. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com June 29, 2012 Last Friday was a sad day for Mazda. That was when the final 13B Renesis Rotary engine rolled off assembly line in Hiroshima, ending a fifty year affair. Mazda first licensed the design for the rotary engine (also known as a Wankel engine) in 1961, with the Cosmo sports car being the first model to use a rotary in 1967. From there, the rotary engine would be used in a series of cars, including the RX-7 and RX-8 sports cars. However, the times are changing. The RX-8 can’t hold a flame to the current crop of sports cars in fuel economy, and failed to meet the European Union’s Euro 5 emissions regulations, excluding it from sale in Europe. Also, sales of the RX-8 have been falling. In 2004, Mazda sold about 24,000 RX-8s. This past year, Mazda only sold 2,896 RX-8s. There is some hope for those who are a fan of the rotary. “While the majority of the company’s engineering resources are focused on the development of our revolutionary Sky Activ technology, work does continue on the next-generation rotary,” Mazda told Autocar. .“Additionally, work continues on the use of fuels other than gasoline, taking advantage of the rotary’s unique ability to operate on multiple fuels without extensive reengineering.” Source: Bloomberg, Autocar William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  8. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com June 29, 2012 Last Friday was a sad day for Mazda. That was when the final 13B Renesis Rotary engine rolled off assembly line in Hiroshima, ending a fifty year affair. Mazda first licensed the design for the rotary engine (also known as a Wankel engine) in 1961, with the Cosmo sports car being the first model to use a rotary in 1967. From there, the rotary engine would be used in a series of cars, including the RX-7 and RX-8 sports cars. However, the times are changing. The RX-8 can’t hold a flame to the current crop of sports cars in fuel economy, and failed to meet the European Union’s Euro 5 emissions regulations, excluding it from sale in Europe. Also, sales of the RX-8 have been falling. In 2004, Mazda sold about 24,000 RX-8s. This past year, Mazda only sold 2,896 RX-8s. There is some hope for those who are a fan of the rotary. “While the majority of the company’s engineering resources are focused on the development of our revolutionary Sky Activ technology, work does continue on the next-generation rotary,” Mazda told Autocar. .“Additionally, work continues on the use of fuels other than gasoline, taking advantage of the rotary’s unique ability to operate on multiple fuels without extensive reengineering.” Source: Bloomberg, Autocar William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

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