The Wankel engine lives! Although recent reports have suggested otherwise, a tweet from Mazda’s PR department was posted in Japanese for their followers indicating a new generation rotary engine is in the works, and thus confirming a previous report stating that SkyActiv senior exec Kiyoshi Fujiwara is continuing development on the Wankel.
Details on the rotary engine are still limited, but fans are not complaining. Although known for its incredible power output from its tiny displacement, a rotary engine’s inherent design burns a lot of fuel, contradicting the current eco-conscious trend across the automotive industry.
To stay relevant, the rotary engine must become more efficient. As Kiyoshi Fujiwara’s involvement suggests, much of Mazda’s rotary development depend on Mazda’s new Skyactiv technologies. Skyactiv innovations that can be applied on the rotary include the lightening of components, minimizing engine friction, engine temperature management, and optimizing compression ratio. Mazda is confident that the sum of these efforts will produce a new rotary that delivers Mazda’s driver-centric Zoom Zoom philosophy while addressing the current demands for fuel efficiency. Arigato, Mazda!
[Source: The Detroit Bureau]