Mazda is not in a hurry to write-off the Rotary engine technology which led its RX-series of sports cars to be remembered affectionately giving it an ‘iconic’ status. The company built its last sports car with the rotary engine, RX-8, in 2012.
Speaking on the sidelines of the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show (2015 IAA), Masamichi Kogai, President and CEO, Mazda Motor Corporation, stated that the company has a dedicated team of engineers whose focus is to advance the rotary engine technology; a report by Autocar stated.
He went on to add that the dedicated team has been working “very enthusiastically” to bring up the standards of the Wankel engine up to modern parameters in emissions and fuel efficiency. He did not elaborate as to why the dedicated engineering team exists, but the report suggests that the company could be planning to launch the successor to the RX-8 by 2018 which would mark the 40th anniversary of the original RX-7.
To make this possible, the engineers have to improve the engine performance in different parameters like CO2 emissions, cold-start capabilities, fuel efficiency and torque in the lower rev range among others.
Mr. Kogai stated that the company will bring back the rotary engine only if it offers the performance and standards seen in other ‘conventional’ piston powered engines.