The next-generation Mazda RX-8 will get significantly improved fuel economy thanks to a new SKY Rotory engine. According to a report by GoAuto out of Australia, Mazda is planning a second-gen RX-8 with a completely reengineered rotary engine. If the Japanese automaker’s engineers are successful in improving the engine’s design, they plan on delivering a new powerplant with 50 percent better fuel economy. And if this goal is achieved (a necessity if Mazda is to continue using the rotor setup says R&D director Seita Kanai), then Mazda will also brand this engine with its new SKY moniker – a name its using for a new lineup of fuel efficient four-cylinder gasoline and diesel powerplants due out in the near future.
Kanai did not, however, comment on if hybrid technology might be used to further improve the rotary engine. a Hybrid setup in such a car might not be all that surprising as rumors continue to pop up that Subaru’s STi will go hybird, Mitsubishi’s EVO will go hybrid and even the Ford Focus RS will be a hybrid.