Mazda has brought back the rotary engine, but not in the way you might remember it if you have fond memories of earlier RX cars like the RX-3.Y . Instead, the rotary engine now serves as the generator in the new which made its debut at this year’s Brussels Motor Show.
Visually, the electric vehicle (EV) with a range extender doesn’t look much different from itswith notable revisions available to the wheel designs and the placement of new logos reminiscent of the three-sided Wankel rotor.
The new model will be available in ‘Edition R’ trim, which features a Black-based exterior and Maroon Rouge Metallic interior trim, as well as a new roof color version of Mazda’s first passenger car, the Mazda R360 Coupe, as an exterior accent. Colour. It also includes exclusive design elements, such as a rotor emblem sewn into the floor mats and embossed into the headrests of the seats.
The rotary engine used is called the 8C and has a capacity of 830 cc, with quoted outputs of 75 PS (74 PS or 55 kW) and 116 Nm of torque. The 8C is Mazda’s first production rotary engine since 2012 and features side intake and exhaust ports like the Renesis unit on the RX-8, though it has direct fuel injection, an aluminum rotor case and thicker corner seals. 2.5mm.
Operating only to generate electricity and not to drive the wheels, the gasoline mill sits at the front and powers an underfloor-mounted lithium-ion battery with an energy capacity of 17.8 kWh. That’s half the battery capacity of the MX-30 EV, with Mazda citing a combined all-electric range of just 85km (110km for city driving) following the WLTP standard.
Said figure isn’t particularly impressive, but that’s without taking into account the rotary motor that supplies power to charge the battery on the go. The MX-30 R-EV has a 50-litre fuel tank, which should give it a substantial range advantage over its sibling – Mazda isn’t providing a total range figure yet, but we’re told it’ll gobble up 1l/100 miles of fuel
The series hybrid system is also plug-in capable, and with reduced battery capacity, it takes about 50 minutes to fully charge the battery with a maximum AC input of 11 kW (1.5 hours with 7.2 kW). . As an alternative, there is also DC fast charging up to 36 kW () to go from a 20 to 80% state of charge in 25 minutes. There is also a 1500 watt auxiliary power port in the car in case you want to power appliances.
Another unique feature of the MX-30 R-EV, aside from reduced range anxiety, is the electric motor. With outputs of 170 PS (168 hp or 125 kW) and 260 Nm, there’s more horsepower but less torque compared to the MX-30 EV’s 145 PS (143 hp or 107 kW) and 271 Nm.
Don’t expect much of a performance boost, as the sprint from 0 to 100 km/h takes 9.1 seconds (the MX-30 EV takes 9.7 seconds) and top speed is still limited to 140 km/h. The fact that the MX-30 R-EV weighs 1,778kg, or about 130kg more than the full EV version, also contributes to these figures.
Drivers will have three modes available to them for the e-Skyactiv R-EV powertrain, with Normal generally operating like a normal EV, but bringing the engine back to maintain the charge during high acceleration. Meanwhile, EV mode forces the car to run on electricity until the battery dies or the accelerator pedal is pressed hard enough. Lastly, Charge mode allows the driver to set a battery level for the car to reach and maintain.