Does Electrification and the Rotary Engine Mix? Mazda Thinks So

Where does the Mazda rotary engine belong? When thinking about this engine, most envision the famed RX-7 and RX-8 sports cars. Mazda confirmed this engine returns to the market later this year in a new model. That new vehicle is the MX-30, a plug-in hybrid subcompact crossover SUV. This new SUV arrives in the United States to give us the first entry into the electrified world for this brand.

The Mazda rotary engine rumors are finally coming true                                         

The Mazda MX-30 is a new take on how the famed rotary engine can work. This compact crossover SUV is a plug-in hybrid model.
Mazda MX-30 | Getty Images

According to Automotive News, talk of bringing back the rotary engine swirled around Mazda since the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show when the MX-30 made its concept debut. This engine, mired with inefficiencies, is expected to be a range-extender in this new hybrid SUV.

Going with a plug-in model allows Mazda to make the engine smaller and reduce the cost of the battery.

An electrified version joins the market

This White Mazda MX-30 was shown at the Tokyo Motor Show in early 2020 as a prototype of this new PHEV SUV.
White Mazda MX-30 | Getty Images

A battery-electric version of the MX-30 arrived in California in the fall, according to MotorTrend. The plug-in hybrid model with the rotary engine follows the EV version. This will give us a pair of electrified models that offer something new from this brand that is a little behind other brands when it comes to electrification.

How will the rotary engine work in the new Mazda MX-30?

This new version of the rotary engine isn’t meant to power the wheels of this little SUV, but it will recharge the vehicle’s batteries. That will translate to battery power for the MX-30 to continue driving. This is the most unique use of this engine and hybrid/electric driving. We will certainly watch this vehicle closely as it comes closer to the autumn release.

This story is being updated.

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