Mazda’s first battery-electric vehicle line, the MX-30, won’t just be an electric vehicle.
Mazda has announced the battery-electric MX-30 will be accompanied by a mild-hybrid MX-30 in a surprise reveal at the Automobile Council in Tokyo.
The mild-hybrid model features a powertrain Mazda is referring to as e-Skyactiv G, which mates the naturally-aspirated Skyactiv-G 2.0-litre four-cylinder to Mazda’s M Hybrid mild-hybrid system.
The MX-30 hasn’t been confirmed for Australia in any guise yet.
A spokesperson from Mazda Australia said, “We are still working through the details of MX-30 and a decision will be made before the end of 2020.”
Mazda so far hasn’t released technical specifications of the MX-30 mild-hybrid’s e-Skyactiv G powertrain.
The M Hybrid system is already available in the Mazda 3 SkyActiv-X M Hybrid and features a belt-driven integrated starter generator (ISG) and a 24V lithium-ion battery. The mild-hybrid 3, however, uses Mazda’s newer SkyActiv-X engine that uses a mixture of compression ignition and spark ignition.
The Skyactiv-G 2.0-litre, in contrast, is an older engine found in lower-end versions of the Mazda 3, CX-3, CX-30 and CX-5. In those applications it produces between 110-115kW of power and 195-200Nm of torque, though the MX-5 uses a more powerful version of the engine with 135kW of power and 200Nm of torque.
Production of the MX-30 EV commenced earlier this year, while sales are set to start before the end of the year.
The mild-hybrid version looks almost identical to the EV, differing only in badging and the lack of a charging port.
Mazda says the introduction of a mild-hybrid MX-30 is “part of a multi-solution strategy that applies optimal power sources to each region based on the long-term vision of technological development”, which suggests it could be limited to only a few markets or entirely exclusive to Japan.
Should it be introduced here, it’d face internal competition from the imminent and almost identically-sized CX-30 SkyActiv-X M Hybrid.