Drive It

Mazda’s engine breakthrough promises up to 30% better fuel efficiency

August 11, 2017

Mazda Skyactiv-X compression ignition
SKYACTIV-X will be the world’s first commercial gasoline engine to use compression ignition.

Mazda deserves a lot of respect in the engine innovation department. The rotary engine was revolutionary when it was released in the 1960’s, and now Mazda is first to the market with its compression ignition engine – a technology which many larger car manufacturers have struggled with for years! (This isn’t the first ever HCCI engine, but it will be the first one commercially available.)

Mazda calls it SKYACTIV-X, the world’s first commercial gasoline engine to use compression ignition and will be available in its cars in 2019. This, yet again, revolutionary engine technology promises 20-30% better engine efficiency than the current SkyActiv-G and is said to be up to 45% more fuel efficient than a 2008 Mazda gasoline engine of the same displacement.

Mazda Motor Corporation recently announced its “Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030” vision, a new long-term plan for technology development that looks ahead to the year 2030. Electric vehicles and emission reduction is a major focus of this plan, and as part of the new technology to achieve this vision, the company disclosed plans to introduce this next-generation engine called SKYACTIV-X in 2019.

Mazda’s approach to 2030 is this:

  • Expand measures for carbon dioxide reduction considering emissions over the vehicle’s entire life cycle
  • Aim to reduce carbon dioxide emissions to 50 percent of 2010 levels by 2030, and achieve a 90-percent reduction by 2050
  • From 2019, start introducing electric vehicles and other electric drive technologies in regions that use a high ratio of clean energy for power generation.
  • Continue efforts to perfect the internal combustion engine, which will help power the majority of cars worldwide for many years to come and can therefore make the greatest contribution to reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

Mazda Skyactiv-X compression ignition
SKYACTIV-G | Mazda’s current gasoline engine

SKYACTIV-X next-generation engine

According to Mazda, the SKYACTIV-X is the world’s first commercial gasoline engine to use compression ignition, in which the fuel-air mixture ignites spontaneously when compressed by the piston. The engine works similar to a diesel in the sense that the fuel-air mixture in the cylinders will ignite by compression instead of a traditional spark plug.

SKYACTIV-X’s proprietary combustion method is called “Spark Controlled Compression Ignition” and overcomes issues that had impeded commercialization of compression ignition gasoline engines up to now.

This new type of combustion engine combines the advantages of both gasoline and diesel engines to achieve outstanding environmental performance, power and acceleration performance.

Compression ignition makes a super lean burn possible that improves engine efficiency up to 20-30 percent over the current SKYACTIV-G, and from 35-45 percent over Mazda’s 2008 gasoline engine of the same displacement. SKYACTIV-X even equals or exceeds the latest SKYACTIV-D diesel engine in fuel efficiency.

There are no responses so far.

Leave a Reply