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Mazda Files Patent for New Rotary Engine, Reveals Technical Aspects

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Mazda RX-VISION concept

Remember back at the Tokyo Auto Show when Mazda simultaneously revealed that it is still working on rotary engines with the SKYACTIV-R and the frankly gorgeous RX-VISION concept car? Since then, we have heard a few rumors about the new engine, but nothing that could be verified or pinned down as truth.

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Well, that is, until now, as it turns out that Mazda filed a patent for that new engine in the United States, titled “Rotary Piston Engine Mounted on Vehicle,” or patent application 20160084158, back in December of 2015 and recently published. So what can it tell us about the exciting new engine?

For one thing, it is flipped. Compared to the previous rotary engines, the new SKYACTIV-R is rotated 180 degrees, putting the exhaust port on top of the engine and intake on the bottom.

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Mazda Wankel Rotary Engine

So, sorta like this, only upside down
Photo: elminium

Basically, this means improved performance at the intake (since incoming air can be drawn in using the air’s inertia), and a much shorter passage for exhaust to leave the engine and go to a turbocharger, so the turbo housing is on top of the exhaust port. In this configuration, Mazda said that the engine can be lowered vertically, since it isn’t limited space-wise by interference between a turbocharger and crossmembers.

Stated plainly, the new rotary is designed to offer better performance while making room for a big, honking turbocharger on top.

Unfortunately that is all we have as of yet, but we will be watching for more.

News Sources: Jalopnik, Auto Evolution