Rising fuel costs and looming CAFE mandates have every automaker worried – including Mazda. That said, the automaker announced a number of changes intended to improve the fuel economy of its lineup by 30 percent before 2015.
Certainly, much of Mazda’s work will lie in the form of powertrain enhancements. By 2011, every gasoline motor offered in a Mazda will utilize direct-injection fuel delivery, in an aim to boost power by 15 percent and improve fuel economy by 20 percent. At the same time, Mazda also plans on launching a new family of turbo-diesel engines, intended to be sold in global markets.
One new engine may be of particular note to enthusiasts – a revised rotary. Mazda says work on the next-generation Wankel motor – codenamed 16X – is currently underway. Few details have surfaced as of yet, but Mazda does note the next motor, likely slated for the RX-8‘s successor, will also make use of direct-injection.
Although other powertrain changes (including the implementation of stop-start technologies and engines capable of running E-85 ethanol blends) are part of Mazda’s plan, so too is a diet. From 2011 until 2015, the automaker plans to shed about 220 lbs from each vehicle. Mazda will also implement new eco-friendly bioplastic materials in production vehicles by 2013.