Mazda spruced up the possible return of the rotary engine as a range extender in the MX-30 earlier this year, but now the return of the rotator for Mazda’s new crossover appears to be official. In a video (see below, go to 7:34 and enable the English subtitles) streamed on Mazda’s official YouTube channel, CEO Akira Marumoto confirmed that Mazda will be using a rotary motor in the MX-30.
Just like it was originally spruced up, Mazda plans to use the rotary as a range extender for the otherwise all-electric version of the MX-30. Marumoto said it will test with a small amount of prototypes next year. The aim is to have a production version of the MX-30 with a rotary engine on Japanese roads by 2022.
Unfortunately, Mazda wasn’t particularly attuned to the specifics of this upcoming rotary engine. A short message over two years ago (in which Mazda officially confirmed the gyro was coming back) contained the most detailed information about the engine. Mazda says it will be compact, have high performance, and be a smooth operator. Of course, these are all things that we expect from a rotary engine. All numbers or specifications for the engine are still unknown.
Mazda has not announced any specific plans for this rotary range extender outside of the MX-30 for the time being. The cute and spunky MX branded crossover is now available in Japan and will be launched with a mild hybrid powertrain. A fully electric version of the MX-30 has also been available in Europe for around a month. There are no official plans yet for Mazda to release the MX-30 to the American public, and even if they did, there are no guarantees that we will get one with a rotary range extender. Mazda could always stick the gyro in another car, but that would mean we’d have to wait even longer to see one of these.
Today’s news certainly deserves some excitement for rotation enthusiasts, but many questions still remain.