For the past 14 years, there has been no rotary-powered production car that could rival the RX-7. Yes, Mazda produced the RX-8, but the successor failed to live up to the previous iteration, as the vehicle went from that sleek and sporty twin-turbocharged rotary bad boy to a naturally-aspirated, smiley-faced young blood who’s sales fell short when combined with the added pressure of having to sell during several years of economic shortcomings in the US regarding fuel.
But there is a new hope! Mazda’s board of directors have officially green-lit the design, engineering, and production of a new successor to wear the coveted RX title.
This new vehicle is being dubbed the “RX-9” and we believe it will finally be a car that will live up to the legacy of the much loved FD RX-7 that was produced from 1993-2002.
The car will reportedly be powered by a 1.6 litre motor that will be an adaptation of the Wankel Rotary seen in several of Mazda’s cars over the years and most notably in their RX sports car line. The new concept motor called the Skyactiv-R employs twin 800cc rotors to power the vehicle, and will likely be mated to a single turbocharger (sorry die hard FD fans, it doesn’t look like a sequential twin-turbo is in the works here) and the car should produce around the 400hp mark.
Now, that may not sound like all that much compared to some of today’s sports car standards but get this: the RX-9 will reportedly weigh in at 2866 pounds, which makes this thing crazy light for the amount of power it makes. To put that in perspective, the latest version of the MX-5 Miata makes 155hp and weighs around 2332 pounds and that vehicle is actually pretty quick.
The best part yet is that the vehicle could range from $50,000 to around $80,000. Now yes I don’t have anything definite yet, but if the vehicle is even in the middle of that range, it’s still not a vehicle that is really all that out of the question.
Based on the math I’ve done that puts the 0-60 times around 3.6 seconds, and the quarter mile time around 11.2 seconds. Now doesn’t that sound a lot better?
The vehicle will not go on sale until 2020 so die hard rotary fans as well as Mazda fans such as myself will still have to sit and wait for a few more years, but it seems as though this car will definitely be worth the wait!