The rotary is back. We already knew the smooth-moving, free-spinning engine was coming back in a range-extender version of the Mazda MX-30, and now we know when.
The range-extender MX-30 SUV will make its global debut early in 2022, program director Tomiko Takeuchi today confirmed.
“The EV model using the rotary engine is going to be introduced in the early part of 2022,” Ms Takeuchi told CarExpert.
“When it comes to EVs, there is always this range anxiety. Therefore, we would like to introduce this EV model using the rotary engine as the range extender to the markets where such a thing is necessary,” Ms Takeuchi said.
Ms Takeuchi said the rotary’s compact nature and smoothness make it the ideal candidate for range extender duties.
The MX-30 program lead said the “rotary engine is always at the heart of Mazda”.
“Developing the rotary engine, although in different fashion, actually excited the members involved,” Ms Takeuchi said.
How much range the rotary will add isn’t yet clear. The pure-electric model has a 35.5kWh battery in the floor, powering a 107kW and 271Nm electric motor.
It’s good for approximately 200km between charges measured against the newer European WLTP cycle.
The MX-30 will launch with a 2.0-litre mild hybrid engine in Australia, before the pure electric model touches down in the middle of 2021.
Mazda Australia is also keen to get its hands on the range extender when it’s revealed.
“Mazda is looking at multiple solutions in terms of drivetrain,” said Mazda Australia managing director, Vinesh Bhindi.
“Mazda Corporation has also spoken about a rotary range extender to this model, starting in 2022. If that is available for Australia, of course we will consider it,” Mr Bhindi said.
Stay tuned for CarExpert’s review of the MX-30 mild hybrid on March 31.