Mazda’s MX-30 R-EV Sees Return of Rotary Engine
If there’s one thing that has ever set Mazda apart from other automakers, it’s the Wankel rotary engine. And it’s finally coming back– sorta.
The Mazda MX-30 R-EV is slated for an official reveal at the Brussels Motor Show on January 13th; however, Mazda Europe has already confirmed the rebirth of the rotary engine in an official tweet. The announcement is accompanied by an image of the vehicle’s badge: An “e” cutout of an inverted rotor.
Now, this isn’t going to be like the 12A’s and 13B’s of old; the MX-30 EV, for those that don’t know, is Mazda’s first all-electric vehicle. We actually tested one not too long ago and, while we did enjoy its fun, affordable and feature-packed form, it was hard to swallow the 100-mile EPA range pill. Well, the MX-30 R-EV will likely remedy that by using the rotary engine as a form of range extender, making it a plug-in hybrid engine.
This is just speculation. Exact details are yet to be disclosed, though we imagine more will arise out of its reveal this Friday. Furthermore, it should be noted that it has not been confirmed (or denied) that this power plant will make its way stateside, though we sure hope it does.
The rotary engine was first seen on a Mazda in the late 60’s, the Cosmo Sport, and last seen as recent as 2012 in Mazda’s RX-8, but fans will likely point to the RX-7 as the preferred platform powered by this engine. The RX-7 has achieved legendary JDM status, and clean examples of both the FC and FD variants fetch a pretty penny– no doubt thanks in large part to the rotary’s implementation.
Despite revealing the car on Friday the Thirteenth, we wish Mazda the best of luck. And perhaps the MX-30 R-EV is just the beginning of the rotary’s return.