Mazda has always been willing to take risks and really dive into engine configurations that step outside the box and push things in new directions. Obviously, the rotary engine was one such configuration that really pushed the boundaries, completely doing away with pistons and valves and creating a whole new design that has developed a cult-like following.
Now Mazda has announced its next foray into engine advancement, and as always, we turn to Jason at Engineering Explained to break things down for us and help understand how this is going to change the game. The new idea isn’t quite as radial as the rotary, as it does still use a typical piston-driven configuration, but to do what Mazda is claiming – 20 to 30% greater fuel efficiency – without giving up horsepower will take some pretty radical innovations. To put it as simply as possible, the engine is a sort of cross between a gas engine and a diesel. Under certain conditions, the engine will operate as a typical gasoline burning engine and other times it will function like a diesel. It does this by swapping between using a spark plug to ignite the air/fuel mixture and using compression, like a diesel, to do so. If all works according to plan, this will result in the engine maintaining a solid horsepower output while still being able to sip fuel when the driver is just cruising.
Hit that play button below and let us know what you think of this technology. Do you think Mazda is on the right track with this, or is there a better way to increase efficiency while at least maintaining performance, if not increasing performance. One thing is for sure, it cannot be said that Mazda isn’t trying! Check back for more on this tech as it becomes available over the next year or so.