Mazda Hints At MX-30 EV Receiving Rotary Range Extender

Killed off by emissions regulations, the rotary engine is set to be revived as a range extender. 

Rotary enthusiasts rejoice, as Mazda has just announced that the Wankel rotary engine is back! Once killed off by tightening emissions regulations, the rotary engine is going to make a comeback as a range extender in Mazda’s MX-30 EV crossover. 

Given a special mention in Mazda’s MX-30 online presentation yesterday by CEO Akira Marumoto, it appears that a small batch of these rotary range extender MX-30 prototypes will begin testing next year. Production versions meanwhile are scheduled for launch in the Japanese market in 2022. 

Thus far though, despite all the hype surrounding the return of what could be thought of as Mazda’s signature product, not much is actually known about the rebirth of this Dorito engine. No official numbers or specifications have been released by the Hiroshima-based automaker, with the only information from them being that the engine is going ‘to be compact, have a high power output and be a smooth operator’. Which basically sums up the characteristics of any rotary engine regardless. 

Mazda MX-30 EV cabin

What more is that there has not been any plans thus far by Mazda to export this rotary range extender MX-30 to anywhere else in the world. According to the presentation, Mazda are instead developing ‘multi-electric technology’ that is to tailor to ‘specific regions and customer usage’. So don’t hold your breath that the braap-braap goodness of this rotary EV remains a JDM exclusive. 

In regards to the non-rotary MX-30, an all-electric version of this compact coupe crossover has already gone on sale in Europe last month. A mild-hybrid variant of this jacked-up RX-8 lookalike was also launched in Japan recently. Seeing that Mazda crossovers seem to be selling like hot cakes here, it would be reasonable to assume that the MX-30 will make its way to our shores soon. It just remains to be seen which powertrain option will be open to Malaysian buyers. 

Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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