Since the last rotary powered RX-8 left Mazda’s plant in Hiroshima in June 2012, many speculated if the Rotary engine is heading its way to the Dodos. But ten years before that, the last unit of the most iconic rotary powered sports car ever made, the RX-7, rolled off from Mazda’s plant in Hiroshima. The news of the revival of RX-7 has gone on and off for over a decade, but the latest insider report from Autocar UK revealed the RX-7 with a new generation rotary engine is making a comeback in 2016.
The new coupe will be derived from the platform, a derivative of the new, lightweight MX-5, which coming in 2015. The new RX-7 will follow the similar design philosophy of the MX-5, but it is unsure if it follows the Kodo design language as spotted on the recent Mazda 3 and 6. The design work is being done under chief designer Ikuo Maeda, whose father was head of design at Mazda in the 1970s when the original RX-7 was created.
The new generation lightweight rotary engine that propels the new RX-7 will be using a more conventional size, possibly about 600cc per rotor, which is slightly smaller than the RX-8’s 654cc-per-rotor unit. No confirmation if the new engine will be using a twin or triple-rotor configuration, although sources suggest the twin-rotor is favorable – which means it will be a 1.2L engine with a power of a 2.4L engine. Estimated output will be around 250 BHP. Mazda is also working hard to improve the rotary’s engine main weaknesses, namely fuel economy and reliability.
If all goes well, the new RX-7 will join the ranks of Toyota 86, Subaru BRZ and a possible new Nissan coupe where lightweight chassis with low output engines will empower the next generation of affordable sports cars from the land of the rising sun.
[SOURCE: Autocar UK]