Mazda’s current line of Skyactiv engines, while just recently launched, is already known for its great fuel economy figures. But the Japanese carmaker is already looking beyond the present, as it is now targeting a new set of gasoline and diesel engines that boasts of better mpg numbers – the Skyactiv 2. This new generation of engines is slated to debut by 2020 and is hoped to achieve 30 percent better fuel economy than the current Skyactiv.
Mitsuo Hitomi, executive officer in charge of powertrain development at Mazda, remarked that Skyactiv 2 will focus on improved internal combustion. "If we want to dramatically improve fuel economy from here, the only route is through lean burning," Hitomi said during a briefing where he provided the first details of the future powertrain strategy.
Hitomi remarked that Mazda needs the technologies to comply with more stringent European carbon dioxide emissions standards, set at 95 grams per kilometer in 2020 and 65 grams per kilometer in 2025. "The next step is the 2020 European regulations," Hitomi said. Skyactiv 2 would represent another big leap in Mazda's powertrain performance, coming less than a decade after Mazda launched its first Skyactiv engines in 2011.
Mazda is still gradually spreading across its lineup the use of Skyactiv engines, which achieved big fuel economy gains by pairing direct injection with higher compression ratios. The new Skyactiv gasoline engine currently under development would be around 30 percent more efficient than current Skyactiv powerplants.
Mazda first used Skyactiv engines in the US in the Mazda3 sedan, then in the Mazda6 sedan and CX-5 crossover. Mazda engineers plans to achieve the mpg gains by cranking up the engine's compression ratio further from the current 14:1 to 18:1. Higher compression tends to improve fuel economy since it can achieve the same combustion temperature even with lesser fuel. According to Mazda, the 14:1 ratio in its first-generation Skyactiv gasoline engine is the world's highest.