Mazda is developing a clean petrol engine to rival EVs
Japanese carmaker Mazda is advancing the development of a petrol engine that they claim is as clean as an EV – but only when the supply chain of energy creation has been calculated into it.
Mazda is essentially championing a way to reduce emissions without electrification. As always, specific groups (read as certain petrolheads) have always been dismissive when it comes to EVs ‘zero’ emission rating due to the mass burning of fossil fuels required to charge them.
Now, Mazda has revealed that this new clean engine tech has been dubbed Skyactiv-3. It follows the first generation of Skyactiv-G motors released in 2011, and the upcoming second-gen version, the Skyactiv-X featuring Spark Controlled Compression Ignition (SPCCI) which is due to roll out into production cars by early 2019.
If Mazda can deliver with the Skyactiv-3, it will make for a dramatic shift forward in what is possible with a standard internal-combustion engine without resorting to the addition of electric motors and batteries. The carmaker is aiming to improve the thermal efficiency of its range of petrol engines to achieve 56 percent total, a rise of some 27 percent from the current version.
According to Mazda, this increase in efficiency will allow this engine of the future to match the wheel-to-wheel emissions of an EV. To back up this claim, Mazda’s measurement takes into account the carbon emissions emitted from the electricity production required to charge EVs. For the internal combustion side of things, they have included the emissions cost of the extraction of oil and refining of petrol to ensure its a level playing field.
The final reveal from Mazda’s calculations is that some (not all) EVs are more polluting than certain conventional petrol powered cars. All of which leads the carmaker to claim that it estimates that it can cut carbon dioxide emissions by some 25 percent with this new engine tech.
So, has Mazda potentially come up with a way of prolonging the life of the internal combustion engine? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.