The Mazda MX-30 has been confirmed to enter the United States market as fully electric and range extender rotary engine variants, Car and Driver reported a Mazda spokesperson as saying. Last October, Mazda CEO Akira Marumoto said in a streamed video that the MX-30 will gain a rotary engine to serve as a range extender for its electric powertrain.

The rotary engine in the MX-30 serves as a range extender to augment the capability of the vehicle’s electric powertrain, which offers a claimed 200 km of range from its 35.5 kWh lithium-ion battery. First unveiled in October 2019, the MX-30 became the Hiroshima-based automaker’s first mass-production electric vehicle, and is built on the SkyActiv-Vehicle Architecture that also underpins the Mazda 3 and CX-30.

The MX-30 supports up to 6.6 kW of AC charging via a Type 2 connection, as well as 50 kW DC fast charging via a CCS connection, the latter about to provide the MX-30 with 80% of battery charge in less than 40 minutes. The single electric motor outputs 141 hp and 264 Nm of torque. According to parts producers involved in the development of the MX-30, Mazda wants to double its range to 400 km, reported Nikkei Asia.

Over in Japan, the MX-30 made its debut in its home market as a petrol-powered model, though it has not been selling as well as expected, dealers in Japan told Nikkei. A monthly sales target of 1,000 units was set for the model, though dealers said that they only managed to sell “about half” that number in the first two months it went on sale.

The RX-8-styled ‘freestyle’ rear doors posed an issue with buyers, said an executive at one dealer, citing user feedback that noted the rear doors to be heavier than conventional doors. These were found to be more difficult to use where parking spaces are narrow, which made it less appealing for women with children, the executive said.

Mazda has yet to confirm a timeline for the MX-30’s arrival into the United States market, though Car and Driver predicts that it will reach dealers in the country as a 2022 or 2023 year model. The MX-30 went on sale in the United Kingdom last September, priced from £25,545 (RM137k) to £30,045 (RM161k) at the time, and will also be joined by the range extender variant ‘in the future’.

GALLERY: 2020 Mazda MX-30 Soul Red Crystal

GALLERY: 2020 Mazda MX-30 Ceramic White