Seeking global challenges from Hiroshima
Mazda seeks out challenge, from commercializing the rotary engine to winning the Le Mans 24-hour race.
Engineers’ challenge to commercialize the rotary engine
One famous challenge Mazda has pursued is the development and commercialization of the rotary engine. At one time, compact and lightweight yet powerful rotary engines were considered just a dream. Engineers around the world had conducted research and development on the rotary engine, but commercialization remained a formidable obstacle. It was Mazda that successfully commercialized the dual-rotor rotary engine in 1967, putting it in the Cosmo Sport. Dubbed the “47 rotary engine samurai”, Mazda’s team of engineers led this challenge and found success through sheer perseverance and force of will after repeated trial and error. The rotary engine’s commercialization was a triumph of their commitment to engineering—they had by their own hand turned the so-called impossible engine into reality.
Spirit of never stop challenging clinches victory at Le Mans
In 1991, Mazda stunned the motorsport world at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the most grueling of endurance racing’s “triple crown”. Teams representing the giants of the global automotive industry compete annually in the race that has become famous as the ultimate test of engine efficiency and durability. That year, Mazda became the first automaker ever to take the overall win with a rotary engine, and remains to this day the only Asian Brand to win the race outright. This came 18 long years after Mazda’s first Le Mans attempt in 1973 ended in retirement and frustration, and stands as testimony to Mazda’s spirit of tenacity and perseverance. Mazda captured the victor’s trophy in its 13th attempt, closing another chapter in its relentless challenger history.
Pursuit of yet another groundbreaking technology
In 2011, Mazda successfully developed another engine that defies convention using SKYACTIV Technology. Since cars utilize only 30% of the energy produced by internal combustion engines, Mazda engineers focused on the 70% of energy that is lost. They completely redesigned the car engine from the ground up with the goal of reducing this 70% loss as much as possible. The resulting SKYACTIV-G mass-production engine attains the world’s highest compression ratio of 14.0:1, the same as race car engines. The high-efficiency engine features dramatically enhanced fuel efficiency, torque and exhaust system performance. Mazda similarly redesigned the transmission, lightweight chassis and body from zero to create a SKYACTIV Technology package that delivers a winning combination of driving pleasure and outstanding environmental and safety performance.
New-generation Mazda vehicles equipped with SKYACTIV Technology have received numerous accolades around the world including prestigious Car of The Year awards. Embraced by drivers as well, Mazda continues to evolve this groundbreaking SKYACTIV Technology.
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