Development of the next generation rotary engine that will power such a car is (apparently) well advanced, according to inside sources quoted by autocar magazine. The same Japanese sources say the car the powerplant will go into should be a two door coupe with lines based on the RX-7. Thus, the new model should no longer use the unique but complicated suicide door system in the RX-8.
The RX-9’s chassis will have a weight of around 1250kg (2755 lbs) thanks to a construction shared with the next generation MX-5. The revolutionary engine will have a displacement that was described as being “quite a bit bigger” than the current generation RX-8. Named the 16x, the powerplant will also have an electric supercharger in order to boost performance to around 300 hp, a lot higher than the 232 hp the RX-8 produces.
The same autocar sources say the engine should be a lot more fuel efficient and better for the environment than the model it replaces. The Renesis engine for the RX-8 was phased out of production this year, as high fuel and oil consumption means it does not comply with Euro5 emission laws. Alternatively, Mazda is even considering a Hydrogen powered version of the sports car that will not produce any emissions.
Despite its shortcomings, the outgoing RX-8 was a success for the Japanese company. With around 50,000 cars sold in the UK from 2003 to present time it is one of the best selling sports coupes on the market.