New concepts and a fresh peak at that Skyactiv-X!

As Mazda strives to lower its CO2 emissions and improve fuel economy, a new breed of Mazda vehicle and engine is about to be unleashed, and it’s something you need to pay attention to. The scene is the Tokyo Motor Show 2017, and the vision involves not one, but two new-gen concept vehicles that will debut next to the very engine that will propel the future vehicles they represent. Little is known about either at this time, but it’s probably safe to assume that Mazda isn’t going to let us down. So far, the brand has released a set of teasers to go along with shots of its new Skyativ-X engine. And, sorry folks, that Skyactiv-X isn’t the rotary engine we’ve all been begging for, but it’s still pretty cool.

So, what does Mazda have on its plate for us in Tokyo? Well, keep reading to find out more and hear a few predictions.

The Mysterious Cars

Mazda has a lot Planned for the Tokyo Motor Show Exterior
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Mazda has a lot Planned for the Tokyo Motor Show Exterior
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It is sporting a four-door appearance, so maybe the RX-7 or -8 name will live on as a sports sedan in the future

Alright, so Mazda wants to play this game, huh? Unfortunately, we can’t make out what we’re really looking at here, but that silver car certainly looks like a good candidate for a successor to the Mazda RX-7 or even the RX-8. After all, it is sporting a four-door appearance, so maybe the RX-7 or -8 name will live on as a sports sedan in the future. At this point, anything is possible. The second model is most certainly a hatchback for a very funk crossover. As low as the roof sits, I’m hoping a production model would be billed as a hatch and not a crossover, but we all know how easily folks bite on that bait, so Mazda could just try to be slick about it. Personally, I’m thinking it could be a new addition that will reside between the Mazda 3 hatch and the Mazda 6 sedan. It could be a Mazda 6 hatch, or Mazda could repurpose the Mazda 5 name, and no, I’m not talking about this crazy-looking minivan wannabe, either:

Mazda has a lot Planned for the Tokyo Motor Show Exterior
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( can you believe this thing actually wears a Mazda5 badge in some markets? The one you see above is for the Canadian market…)

So, now that all of that is out of the way, the larger sports sedan, could be the next Mazda 6 sedan, or it could be something a bit larger – maybe a Mazda 7 or Mazda 9 that would compete with other full-size vehicles on the market; perhaps even digging some new roots into the luxury segment. But, what about the engine?

Skyactiv-X – Zoom Zoom

Mazda has a lot Planned for the Tokyo Motor Show Drivetrain
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We’re talking about a 20-to-30-percent efficiency improvement and a 10-to-30-percent increase in torque output over the current Skyactiv-G engine in use today

It almost sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? We’re talking about a 20-to-30-percent efficiency improvement and a 10-to-30-percent increase in torque output over the current Skyactiv-G engine in use today. Furthermore, it uses spark-controlled-compression-ignition – no, folks, it’s not a sparkless engine as reported by some outlets – but it does run on pure compression ignition, just like a diesel, under the right conditions. And, it does so seamlessly without any noticeable effects on performance or drivability. To put things simply, the engine is able to run on a much leaner air-to-fuel ratio than your everyday spark-ignition engine, and therefore uses less fuel and produces fewer emissions. The engine uses electronic actuation for valve control and must control the air-to-fuel mixture much more tightly than that of a conventional ICE. On the downside, rumor has it that the engine does tend to develop spark knock, especially around the times when the computer has to decide between spark and compression ignition, so it may not be quite as seamless as Mazda hopes. It will be making its way into Mazda cars by 2019, though, so Mazda still has a little time to sort out the bugs.

And, on that note, since the Skyactive-X is a 2.0-liter that’s good for around 200 ponies tops, the silver-colored concept will likely be a Skyactive-X hybrid model, which does make sense considering Mazda’s push to electrification as well. For now, we’ll just have to wait and see, but there’s certainly going to be something interesting for us to see in Tokyo this year. Stay tuned for updates!


Mazda RX-7

2018 Mazda RX-7 High Resolution Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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Read our full review on the 2018 Mazda RX-7.

2017 Toyota GR HV Sports Concept Exterior Interior
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Rear-wheel drive

Read ore Tokyo Motor Show news.

Press release

Mazda Motor Corporation will exhibit two concept models at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show, one that heralds the company’s next-generation products and another that embodies the direction of the company’s next-generation design. Mazda will also display the SKYACTIV-X next-generation gasoline engine as a technology exhibit at the show, which runs from Oct. 28 through Nov. 5. 1

Mazda’s theme for this year’s show – Mazda is committed to enriching people’s lives through “Celebrate Driving.” – indicates the company’s determination to continue offering cars that celebrate the driving experience, enrich lives and build a strong bond with customers.

The product concept model, a compact hatchback that fuses next-generation technology and design, will make its world premiere at the show. It adopts SKYACTIV-Vehicle Architecture, next-generation technologies that apply a human-centered design philosophy for optimal functionality, and is powered by the SKYACTIV-X, set to become the world’s first commercial gasoline engine to use compression ignition.2 Dynamic performance has been dramatically refined and next-generation design condensed to create Mazda’s ideal compact hatchback.

The design vision model embodies the concepts that will define the next generation of Mazda design, resulting in a more profound expression of the globally-acclaimed KODO design language Mazda debuted on the Mazda CX-5 in 2012.

The Mazda CX-8, a new three-row crossover SUV that goes on sale in Japan in December, will also be on display at the show. The company’s flagship SUV in Japan, it features sophisticated styling and comfortable seating in all three rows. Major upgrades to the SKYACTIV-D 2.2 clean diesel engine increase torque and power for composed performance.

A special edition Mazda Roadster (MX-5) Red Top featuring a dark cherry red canopy and auburn Nappa leather upholstery will be exhibited.

“In August, we announced our Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030 long-term vision for technology development, setting out how Mazda hopes to use driving pleasure, the fundamental appeal of the automobile, to help solve issues facing people, the earth and society. The vision commits Mazda to make substantive cuts in CO2 emissions, and we believe the best way to achieve this is to reduce emissions under real-world conditions while offering a mix of combustion engines and electrification technologies in consideration of each region’s energy situation and energy mix,” said Masamichi Kogai, Mazda’s Representative Director, President and CEO. “Our stand this year marks the beginning of a new era for Mazda. We will showcase a concept model with the design and technologies that will define a whole new generation of Mazda cars. Among them is SKYACTIV-X, a gasoline engine that realizes a long-held dream of the global automotive industry.”

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