The electric crossover Mazda MX-30 will have a hybrid version of the R-EV (from Rotary Electric Vehicle) with the ability to recharge from the network. Its Japanese automaker will present at the Brussels Motor Show, which will be held in the Belgian capital from 14 to 23 January.
Mazda hasn’t installed a Wankel engine in its models for 11 years – the last rotary road car is the RX-8 quad coupe, which ceased production in 2012. However, the advent of the electric age will give the unique technology another chance.
After all, the MX-30 crossover – the first electric car from Mazda – turned out to be controversial. The Japanese insisted that the rejection of the internal combustion engine will not deprive the driver of the pleasure of the trip, but it does not last long: the traction battery with a capacity of 35.5 kWh is only enough for 200 km in the WLTP cycle. Last spring, the Japanese added support for three-phase home charging, but this hardly affected meager sales.
Alas, driving the rotor into the red zone (in the RX-8 it starts at 9000 rpm) will not work: the internal combustion engine will be used as a generator to recharge the battery, and the electric motor will drive the crossover (in the current MX-30 it produces 107 kW / 145 hp and 271 Nm), mounted above the front axle. Perhaps for a hybrid, its return will be increased to compensate for the increased mass.
In general, the rejection of the rotor was dictated, among other things, by considerations of ecology and economy: the Japanese could not fit the RX-8 engine into the Euro-5 standards. Most likely, the hybrid MX-30 will receive a compact rotary internal combustion engine of low power (RX-8 developed 192-231 hp) in order to successfully pass certification in Western markets.
In Australia, New Zealand and Japan, the MX-30 is also available with a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated Skyactiv (156 hp, 199 Nm), and a 48-volt starter-alternator acts as an electric add-on. But such crossovers are not produced with left-hand drive.
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