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The Mazda MX-30 was an abject failure in the United States. The fully-electric version wasn’t admired or enjoyed in any market, mostly due to its poor electric driving range. When This electric SUV appeared in 2021, it seemed ten years too late. Early EVs provided miniscule driving ranges, mostly less than 100 miles, but in 2021, a new EV with this limitation was out of place. Maybe this new MX-30 version will give the Mazda SUV a second life.

What’s changed about the Mazda MX-30?

The automotive world must make room for a new type of electric vehicle. The new 2024 Ram 1500 Ramcharger is an extended-range electric vehicle, and the new MX-30 joins this new class. The MX-30 R-EV might never see time on American roadways, but it’s already making waves in the European market.

Instead of using a pure-electric powertrain, this new Mazda compact crossover has a gasoline-powered range extender (a small engine never used to drive the wheels) and an electric battery pack. An electric motor still drives the wheels, but a new Wankel rotary engine sends power to the battery pack to extend the driving range.

This new setup, coupled with a 13.2-gallon fuel tank, gives this new Mazda crossover up to 423 miles on the WLTP cycle, but that cycle is extremely optimistic. Most drivers should expect to enjoy closer to 280 miles of driving range, which is much better than the 100 miles provided by the EV version of the MX-30.

White 2023 Mazda MX-30 R-EV driving on a road.
2023 Mazda MX-30 R-EV | Mazda

 Mazda continues its love of rotary engines

Mazda mentioned using a Wankel rotary engine as a range extender in the past; now it’s a reality. Without the range extender, the new Mazda MX-30 R-EV can drive for 53 miles using electric power. This new Mazda is being advertised as a plug-in hybrid because explaining an extended-range EV might be too much to expect.

The small engine is quiet and barely noticeable while driving. This makes it a good option for charging electric batteries that send power to the wheels.

Three distinct drive modes for the Mazda MX-30 R-EV

The drive modes for this new MX-30 are Normal, Charge, and EV.

The Normal mode allows the vehicle to choose when the batteries require charging. This means you don’t have to think about when to use the range extender. The Normal mode starts the Wankel when the battery charge dips below 45%.

Choose EV mode, and you’ll use more of the electric energy in the batteries. This mode limits the use of the rotary engine unto the batteries hit 20% of the total charge.

In Charge mode, you set the desired state of charge and when to use the range extender to charge the batteries.

How much power does this new Mazda produce?

The new Mazda MX-30 R-EV produces 168 horsepower, up from 143 in the BEV version. Although this extended-range EV is heavier than the EV model, the sprint time is slightly better at 9.1 seconds to 60 mph.

This new version of the Mazda MX-30 breathes new life into a recently dead Mazda. This still might not be enough to send it to our market.

Source: InsideEVs