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All about the Mazda MX-30 R-EV and the future of the wankel engine

January 16, 2023

Mazda MX-30 R-EV

The Mazda MX-30 R-EV looks like a normal MX-30. So far, then, no surprises. But under the skin, the differences between the battery-electric variant and R-EV are particularly significant. Officially, by the way, the model is called Mazda MX-30 e-Skyactiv R-EV, but colloquially we just call it the R-EV. The letter “R” stands for Rotary and the combination EV for Electric Vehicle. So an electric car with rotary engine.

Plug-in hybrid

The Mazda MX-30 R-EV is a plug-in hybrid. So the 17.8 kWh battery pack can be charged with a plug. On a full battery charge, you should be able to drive about 85 kilometers. If on the road the battery falls below a certain percentage, the system engages the 830cc wankel engine to generate power. Thus, the car should be able to travel about 600 kilometers.

The Wankel engine is BACK! – Mazda MX-30 R-EV (2023) – AutoRAI TV

Average fuel consumption

On paper, the Mazda MX-30 e-Skyactiv R-EV has an average fuel consumption of 1.0 l/100 kilometers, equivalent to CO2 emissions of 21 g/km (WLTP). To clarify, as with a fully electric car, the wheels of the car are driven only by the electric motor. So the gasoline engine does not drive the wheels, but acts as a generator that charges the battery.

Electric motor and wankel engine: the figures

The electric motor has a maximum output of 125 kW (170 hp) at 9,000 rpm that can produce up to 260 Nm of torque at 4,481 rpm. The 74 hp (55 kW) wankel engine/rotary is a single-disc engine with a maximum speed range of 4,700 rpm. Obviously, a wankel engine can handle much higher revs, but Mazda says between 500 and 4,700 rpm is the “sweet spot” in terms of efficiency. The car will have three driving modes, namely EV mode, Normal mode and Charge mode.

Mazda MX-30 R-EV

Multiple applications

Mazda dreams of multiple applications with the wankel engine, but stresses in an interview with that it has not reached that point yet. The brand must first resolve issues regarding the business case; moreover, increasingly stringent emissions regulations do not help. A sports car with only a wankel engine like the RX-7 or RX-8 is not going to happen anymore. When Mazda uses the wankel engine, it is always in combination with electropower, because otherwise the chances of success are extremely low.

BEV version MX-30 a lot more interesting in the Netherlands

Mazda expects about half of MX-30 buyers to opt for an R-EV. This also depends heavily on the market. In a country like the Netherlands, the focus is much stronger on the MX-30 BEV. The fiscal climate of plug-in hybrids in the Netherlands is particularly unfavorable.

Mazda MX-30 e-Skyactiv R-EV – technical data.

Vehicle to load

The MX-30 R-EV also supports V2L (vehicle to load). With V2L, owners can use electrical appliances up to 1500 W through the outlet in the luggage compartment. This convenient feature allows owners to take cooking devices with them when camping or for laptop charging.

Models MX-30 R-EV

Mazda supplies the MX-30 R-EV in several versions. The Prime-Line is the entry-level model and features 18-inch alloy wheels in Silver Metallic, LED headlights and i-Activsense safety features such as Radar Cruise Control, Head-up display and Blind Spot Monitoring. The Exclusive-Line has heated front seats and a heated steering wheel. The interior and exterior mirrors dim automatically, and the car also has Smart Keyless Entry.

MX-30 R-EV Advantage

The MX-30 R-EV Advantage has an even more luxurious finish with an industrial interior or a modern interior. The Makoto combines the equipment of the Exclusive-Line with the luxurious finish of the Advantage. A third interior option is also available on the Makoto; an Urban interior with black ecological synthetic leather interior with fabric seat made of black denim. Optionally, the Makoto can be equipped a high-end Bose(R) audio system, 360 View Monitor or a sliding/tilting roof.

Mazda MX-30 R-EV

Edition R

To celebrate the return of the rotary engine, Mazda is coming out with the Edition R. Mazda was the first in the world to make the two-rotor rotary engine a commercial success. Features of the Mazda MX-30 R-EV Edition R include the exclusive exterior color in Jet Black with a Maroon Rouge finish along the roof. A subtle reference to Mazda’s first car, the Mazda R360, which was also available with a “Maroon Rouge” finish on the roof. The Edition R also gets unique design elements, such as a rotor-shaped emblem sewn into the floor mats and embossed on the headrests of the seats.

Rotary motor disappeared in June 2012

With the discontinuation of the RX-8, Mazda ended mass production of the rotary engine in June 2012. Now, about 10 years later, the rotary engine is making a comeback. This new rotary engine is adapted to the requirements of our time. Mazda never stopped development of the wankel engine. Behind the scenes, there has been continuous work on the technology over the past few years.

Mazda MX-30 R-EV

Mazda MX-30 R-EV - Brussels Motor Show 2023

Mazda MX-30 R-EV