Did Mazda just confirm development of the RX-9?
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Rumours of an RX-8 successor have been swirling ever since the Mazda ceased production of the rotary-powered coupe back in 2012, and left the brand's sports car spot in the line-up empty.
The Japanese brand gained the attention of many back in 2015 by unveiling the stunning RX-Vision concept, but news of the rotary-revival has been scarce ever since.
A patent recently filed by Mazda showing a ‘Vehicle Shock Absorption Structure’ has got fans all giddy because it is built in a style that isn't currently used on any of Mazda's hatchbacks, coupes, and SUVs.
Highlighted in a report is the double-wishbone front suspension setup that is primarily used by sports and performance cars alike, and the prominent lower cross member suggests a front-mid engine layout.
You'll notice that there isn't much space between the front cross member and the firewall, which leads us to believe that a compact engine will be filling this hole. This compact power plant could potentially be in the form of the new rotary engine that Mazda is reportedly developing.
According to Motor Magazine, a source at Mazda revealed that the RX-9 will be built on a brand new platform, one that isn't intended to be used by any other vehicle in the Japanese manufacturer's line-up.
Just a couple of months ago, Mazda submitted a patent that seemed to show a newly-designed turbocharged rotary engine, one which is said to be a lot more efficient than previous examples.
Mazda CEO Akira Matsumoto has expressed an interest in building another rotary-powered car, but efficiency woes have prioritised other projects.
"Inside Mazda, we all have the dream of seeing one day a vehicle powered by a rotary engine. But given the number of things we have to do, we had to put this on the back burner, and we have no time frame," he said.
Let's hope this RX-8 successor does see the light of day, and another rotary-powered Mazda sports car is enjoyed by many.
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