Edmunds Inside Line has an insider scoop story about the future of Mazda’s rotary engine cars. According to their sources, the company is working on a new Mazda RX-7, and a next generation Mazda RX-8 is also in the works but will be called the Mazda RX-9.
What’s wrong with the RX-8 name you ask? Probably nothing, I think the change is being made to bring the naming scheme in line with what they have with the SUVs, the Mazda CX-7 and CX-9. The engine powering these new sports cars will be a production version of the RENESIS 16X, with its displacement upped to 1.6 litres thanks to dual 800cc rotors instead of the current 1.3 litre dual 654cc rotor design. Fuel economy will also be improved by 20%, much needed to help the RENESIS shed its fuel guzzler reputation.
The 16X will also be getting a twin clutch 6-speed transmission, which will finally allow automatic versions of the RX cars to rev as high as their manual counterparts, since a twin clutch transmission’s internals are more similiar to a manual gearbox than a slushbox. The only thing is with the introduction of a twin clutch, will there still be a manual version?