It left the market with the 2012 Mazda RX-8, but the rotary engine remains at the heart of several rumors and news about future Mazda models.
Recently, Mazda’s head of engine development, Mitsuo Hitomi said the rotary engine could be used as a range extender for a future Mazda electric vehicle.
At the Tokyo Motor Show, Mr. Hitomi offered a little more explanation on the reasoning behind this idea to Autocar.
According to Mitsuo Hitomi, it is the quietness and not necessarily the efficiency of the rotary engine that makes it appealing as a range extender. A rotary engine makes less noise than a traditional gasoline engine, and therefore makes it better suited to EVs and their silent electric motors.
Mazda plans to introduce its first 100% electric car starting in 2019.