Mazda rotary engine returns as a generator in the MX-30 plug-in hybrid, reveal on January 13th

Get ready as Mazda’s famed rotary engine is coming back this Jan. 13, 2023, along with the release of its new logo. 

Before you start dreaming of another Mazda sports car like a new generation of the Mazda MX-5 or a successor to the RX-7 – the rotary engine will not be used to directly power the drive wheels.

Instead, Mazda plans to use it as a range extender for its first electric vehicle (EV), the Mazda MX-30.

Why the rotary?


Mazda and the Wankel rotary engine have a long-running relationship. 

The company originally licensed the technology from defunct German carmaker NSU Motorenwerke and improved it to be a powerplant for its vehicles. 

The 1967 Mazda Cosmo coupe was the first to get this engine, followed by the legendary RX sports car range that made the engine more accessible to the public. 

The rotary last saw use with the Mazda RX-8 until it was phased out in 2012 because of emissions concerns.

As it will only be used as a generator, Mazda has tuned the rotary in the MX-30 to be more environmentally friendly as it only charges the vehicle’s battery pack. 

This means that it can run at an optimized constant speed so that vibrations and emissions are kept to a minimum. 

Challenging Nissan’s e-Power system

The Mazda MX-30 Battery Electric Vehicle


The rotary engine and the electric drivetrain of the MX-30 will function similarly to Nissan’s e-Power system in the Kicks crossover

This means that the MX-30 EV can go further without plugging in to charge and eliminates the fear of range anxiety. 

However, to differentiate it from its Nissan rival, Mazda has chosen to keep a plug-in option for the vehicle, making the Mazda MX-30 a plug-in hybrid. 

This makes using the Mazda more convenient as there are multiple ways to keep it charged. 

Beyond its global reveal

Mazda has yet to reveal the vehicle’s maximum range with the new rotary range extender. However, we suspect that it will double its existing EV range of 160 kilometers. 

The rotary MX-30 will join the regular MX-30 EV and the MX-30 Mild Hybrid on Jan 13, 2023 as all are set to be unveiled globally at the Brussels Motor Show. 

The European market will be the first to get a taste of this new rotary power before June of this year, with other markets set to follow soon after. 

Are you excited about the return of the rotary engine as a range extender for Mazda’s hybrid technology?


Source: Mazda rotary engine returns as a generator in the MX-30 plug-in hybrid, reveal on January 13th

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