I've always had a soft spot for the Wankel Rotary engine, not only because it's got a funny name but the noise and power per liter they produce is astounding. The only car firm that really ever put any money into developing them was Mazda, the best Japanese car manufacturer in my opinion for this reason alone. They killed off their rotary efforts with the exciting but somewhat wart-like RX8 due to it's inability to achieve over 20mpg in the real world. But now there are signs we could be seeing a return of the magic triangle.
Mazda's design language has had it's ups and downs. One of my favourite looking cars of all time is the FD RX7. It's sweeping bodywork and popup headlights are my idea of perfection. And the RX3 is similarly beautiful to my eyes. But all good things come to an end and the RX8 was a bit of a pig. It's like the designers all had different ideas of what they wanted the car too look like, and it's stupid smiling front grill makes me cringe for some reason. In recent times, their panther inspired design language has added a premium look to even their small hatchbacks with the new Mazda 3 looking nothing short of stunning. The concept above is, in my opinion, one of the best looking cars I've ever seen. The way the bonnet dips to the huge grill and the fixed spoiler on the rear help this look so fantastic.
A Mazda official confirmed that they 'ofcourse' are working on rotary technology and granted, these rotary engines being produced are to act as suplimentary power in hybrid vehicles due to their lower noise levels when your not driving like a teen in a K hole outside McDonnalds, but even the fact they're in production is more than anyone expected.
The very idea of a new rotary car is enough to get my skin tingling. There is something magical about an engine which begs for revs and rewards you with the sound of a million hornets stuck in a desk fan. I remember as a kid going to Jap-Fest and hearing the rx7's drifting and looking on in awe, I just hope they manage to keep at least some of the playfulness and excitement from previous RX models. It's sad how Mazda currently only produce the underpowered MX5 with devisive looks, then a whole array of dreary SUV's, and hatchbacks which are just about half as fast as a Focus RS.
Personally, I really do hope that the RX9 will be a real car and even better if it can look somewhat like the porn in the picture above. And maybe one-day I'll be able to trade my 350z for a *reliable* rotary car.