The fact that Mazda is well into their plans to terminate the current RX-8 sports car is common knowledge at this point. However, if eliminating their only rotary-powered vehicle is in the works, why is the company still working on their Wankel engine?
There are whispers fluttering around that Mazda may be working on a new sports car model with the help of none other than Audi. Audi just released their A1 hatchback-based e-tron concept, which features a 254cc Wankel range-extender located beneath the trunk floor, so these latest rumors suggest that the two will be getting into bed together on a new rotary sports car featuring similar technology.
Mazda’s next sports car was originally thought to be the RX-9, but recent news has gotten people thinking that Mazda may be working on a successor to the RX-7 instead. Whichever model they choose to roll with, Inside Line is reporting that Mazda’s next rotary sports car will hopefully achieve just 130 g/km of CO2 compared to the 299 g/km of the current RX-8. Other features of the new sports car may include micro-hybrid technology, auto stop/start, lightweight materials, and laser ignition - which eliminates the use of spark plugs, ultimately making it easier to seal the Wankel’s trochoidal combustion chamber for improved efficiency and reduced hydrocarbon emissions.