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New Mazda Rotary Vehicles: RotaryNews predictions and speculation
Submitted by SuperUser on Thursday, February 13, 2003 - 10:11pm

It has been rumored that Mazda would like to develop several Rotary powered vehicles to spread Rotary power across their product line. This would take advantage of and spread development cost of the RENESIS motor across a greater spectrum of cars. All these rumors and our wishful thinking, got RotaryNews speculating and predicting the future of the RENESIS motor and it's uses in different Mazda vehicles/platforms. RN recalls a time when Rotary power was available in a variety of vehicles, and we came up with some ideas based on rumors, lies and even a little fact. The fact that Mazda is really good at the front engine/rear wheel drive combination, like RX's and the Miata, and that the Rotary engine is well suited for this application, led us to some of the following conclusions: A new RX-3 Mazda might/could develop a lightweight, low price point, entry level, compact vehicle that would take advantage, of the RENESIS' newfound emissions and mileage standards. The vehicle could be made in the spirit of the RX-3 Coupe and would break away from the now all-consuming front-wheel drive entry level platforms of the market today. The car could be powered by a lower horsepower (160hp-180hp) version of the RENESIS that is easily tunable for higher horsepower, if so desired by new owners. This would hold price point and the ever-important CAF' emissions and mileage standards of the class. We feel that such a car should be priced in the 16K to 18K price range, to expose a whole new generation of young people to Rotary power. This would give Mazda a very unique vehicle for the entry market, which would definitely attract enthusiast of all types to its product line. What do you guys think of reviving the RX-3 name? It would definitely be cool to have a 'NEW' RX-3!! The new RX-7 The new RX-7 has been confirmed as 'coming soon', by a lot of industry folks and automotive publications. We cannot confirm this, but RN does know that a product has been developed and is being considered for production, but there are no firm production plans yet. But, based on our limited information and insight, gathered at a few press events and talking to industry people, here are a few predictions and thoughts on the new RX-7.

  • Larger displacement RENESIS motor with possible forced induction.
  • 300+hp regardless of the motor being N/A or turbo/super charged.
  • Lightweight (less than 2800lbs)
  • Extremely high handling limits
  • Unique styling and design
  • No compromises
Mazda understands that any new vehicle carrying the RX-7 moniker will have live up to the 3rd generation FD RX-7. We have actually been told as much by key Mazda people. They understand all of the shortcomings, and more importantly, the streghtens of the FD, and will/have addressed and/or improved on them, as to not make the same mistakes twice. The new RX-7 will be a car designed and built with the spirit of the FD, through and through! The RX-8 All we can say here is: MazdaSpeed-8! We hear that a blown version of the car is in the works as we write. No confirmation of this going into production, but the car should just plain rock! The concept has already been shown at the Tokyo Auto-Saloon, and with a little boost from a turbo or super charger, watch out! Rotary Truck One can only wish! However, there is no light weight 2x4 mini-trucks on the market right now that packs a punch. The REPU from the 70s was the origional "pickup with pickup." The B3000/Ranger have moved up-market, and have been up-sized, leaving room for a mini-truck with the RENESIS for those that needs the utility of a pickup, with Mazda's DNA, and the RENESIS. The future for the Rotary engine looks real bright at Mazda right now, and we hope that some of our thoughts, ideas and predictions, get you all thinking, the same way it did us. We'd love to hear what you all enthusiasts think of these ideas and predictions. They are really not as far fetched, as they might seem. Mazda is a car company looking to break away from the pack and we the enthusiasts, stand to win big! Please leave us your comments and input. We know Mazda is listening!

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subject:
Um, Protege RX-3 ??
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I think a RX-3 Protege' and Protege' 5 would work fairly well, even if it was front wheel drive.

I believe the Mazda 6 has a transmission tunnel for AWD right ?? hmm....
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subject:
The affordable rotary
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
As a proud owner of the orignal and most affordable RX-7, I think that a low cost, compact RWD car with ~150 hp would own. Not only that, but a presence in the entry-level compact class gives the rotary immense exposure, which is good. The only question is, would a de-tuned Renesis get better gas mileage? If it can, then we have a car that could potentially be a winner. Compact, RWD, rotary and a Mazda. I'd go into debt to buy that car!
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
i feel mazda should do all this. i am a great enthusiest of the rotors i have read many books on them including the norby book and the nickolist book. I own a rx-7 and i own a 20b motor they are great. it blows every thing away. my sugggestion is to make a supper fuel effisiant compact car hatch back like the hoda civic. it would probibly be a big hit if the price tag is low enough
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subject:
Rx-3
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Yes please Mazda make a new Rx-3 and a new RX-7.From the small pics of the 3 it appears ready to pounce on the market.I have a 1975 Rx-3 and it would like to have a new brother.
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subject:
Mazda RX-3/RX-7/RX-8... Just build them all!!
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Mazda SHOULD build the RX-3... Twin-rotary Renesis between 160 and 180hp is good, but (indeed) why stop there? And the Miata (MX-5 in Holland I believe...)Should also be fitted with the Renesis!!! A pick-up with a rotary... That would be cool... Just go for it Mazda!!!
And please build a 4th-generation RX-7 next to the RX-8... I was thinking about 300hp version for a 4th gen RX-7, but a 400hp+ triple-rotor Renesis-turbo-charged rotary (20B-Renesis?) engine will kick the crap out of all Porsche's, Ferrari's and other so-called sports vehicles even more... (For none of these can run a 1/4mile in about 10s@149mph, but then again, those aren't real cars... And only "sportscars" for street use...)
When will a quad-rotor Mazda be one the street to smoke the "streetsportscars" like the Ferrari Enzo... (Which runs from 0 to 125mph in 9.6s)... Will Mazda come with an answer against that Ferrari? I hope so... What will it be called? Mazda RX-"Avatar"? Go for it Mazda!!!
Greatings...
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subject:
concept cars
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I saw a concept cosmo here recently in a magazine that did a great story on an original cosmo. Can anybody link the article to view the concept cosmo?
Tim
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subject:
New Mazda RX-3
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
This would be a great idea. There's currently no RWD vehicle in the sport compact market (the BMW 318ti is gone now) but there certainly is room for it. Give the base model something along the lines of 160-175 hp (perhaps a new 12A since Mazda is considering multiple displacement versions of the Renesis, with an upper level version getting the 210 hp version from the "standard" RX-8. Maybe a Mazdaspeed version with the 250 hp Renesis? While it might seem weird to have a "retro" car based on a car virtually no one remembers, the later (74-78) RX-3 grille very closely resembles that of the RX-8, and the long hood/short deck mini muscle car styling still would be fresh in today's market - just look at the Tiburon, Eclipse, and RSX. Give us a 2/3-door coupe and a 4/5 door sedan as well. The important things, though, are:

1) Keep it RWD. Maybe a stretched NB Miata platform?

2) Keep it cheap. It could command a price premium over the Protege, Civic, et al, but not too much. To start out it's going to have to be down near $17,000, the Neon SRT-4 is going to be just under $20,000 and while a Neo RX-3 needn't be faster in a straight line, it shouldn't lag too far behind. The basic version should be in the 7 second 0-60 range, with the 210 hp version being in the low 6s.

3) Keep it light. These days I guess anything under 2800 lbs is light (that's how much the SVT Focus weighs). But with Mazda's wizardry with keeping the RX-8 under 3000 lbs, I could see something close to 2600 lbs, perhaps?

4) Keep it rotarized! This is a no-brainer.

A RWD sporty subcompact would blow all the other similar cars, regardless of straight-line speed and handling, into the weeds. There'd be nothing else out there like it. Make it look like the 74-78 RX-3 and you'd have an unbeatable little car.

Oh, and even if you don't want to be retro about it, calling it the RX-3 makes sense, since it'd be about the same size as the upcoming Mazda3....
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subject:
One more thing
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
You might say that using the RX-3 name and style wouldn't make sense since the target market is too young to remember it... well aside from the fact that some of us DO know (I'm 22, and anyone who reads Sport Compact Car or some of the other better compact performance mags have seen these cars in print before, if not in person), keep in mind that many cars in this price range that appeal to younger people are bought by their parents for their kids. The kids might not remember the name, but his parents probably will... There have got to be plenty of parents out there with fond memories of those "piston engine goes boing boing boing" commercials...
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subject:
new rx-?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
New guy here...hope you can bear with me.

Joe Latshaw made some great comments.

I am probably kinda old in here..late 30's...but, I do remember the old rotary coupe/sedans from and through the 70's. Even as a kid....and not knowing who Mazda was...I thought their cars (R100/RX/2-3-4-5) looked unique....and sounded unique too.

Ok Mazda....you want to attract a new customer...who has never bought a new car before...or a Japanese car before...because NO ONE offers me what I want...

1) Rear Wheel Drive!! Please. I have driven many fwd cars...and hated all of them!! Especially when time to service/replace the transaxle...way too expensive.

2) Some room, please. I'm almost 6'5"...but I never seem to be able to find any adjustment in a small car, where my head isn't hitting the roof....or my knees aren't hitting the steering wheel...etc. The original (Austin) Mini...somehow...I can fit in it!

3) Price. Not all of us are rich in America....it is no cliche that some work harder than they are payed. So...how about some honest content and value for our money? Leave the "fluff" off, or at least optional. Junk like power windows and locks, 15 cupholders, automatic suspension crap, extra doors (a la RX-8) and other "lifestyle" nonsense. Some of us are single, happy, with no 2.5 ankle biters, etc. Meaning:

Solid structure, room for a real human being, great handling, mechanically bulletproof (no "bargain parts bin" engineering), how about 15 grand out the door?? Tops?? Seriously!

4) Rotary engine...no excuses!! Honestly...when someone says "Mazda" to me...I instantly think rotary...and then remember...I could not fit in any of them! Tragic. And now you have the Renesis...and I bet I cannot fit in an RX-8. By the way, you can leave the turbo off. Build the engine/trans/rear axle tough to start with, but leave off the complexity. Besides, I prefer superchargers anyway.

5) And, on a more subjective note..bring back some of your unique styling!! You do not have to appeal to everyone! I remember some of those old RX details..round and hex taillamps, those little slat things on the RX-3...no "euro" or "worldbland" styling. If Ford let the awful (last) Cougar out of it's cage...you can do much better than that! By the way, make it so you cannot make it ugly with all that "tuner" crap too.

6) Unless you used it on a showcar, I believe you have never used "RX-6". How about it? The 6 could stand for "6 foot plus tall customers can fit in it"!

Well...that is my 50(?) cents worth. It is meant as constructive, Guys at Mazda....if you got the stones to make a RWD, rotary power, 2 door coupe that I can fit in, stand the looks of, and don't have to hit the lotto to afford, I would be happy to be a customer.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I'd love a modern update of the Rx-3. Forget the REPU - too much of a restricted market. Here is my wishlist for a new Rx-3.

Sedan and possibly wagon variants.
Rear wheel drive
detuned Renesis, 180/200hp max - mainly to put it into it's own market rather than compete with the Rx-8.
Lighter and cheaper than the Rx-8.
Retro look rather than just a modern car with a rotary. Do a Mini Cooper/Beetle/Thunderbird by keeping the stron styling queues.. for me these are..
Round taillights and headlights.
Nose styling (bezels that wrap around like the 74+ rx-3), seperate grill with rotor badge.
rear 1/4 vent trim, reflectors in the rear bumper

Keep the original idea of the 70's rotaries alive, that is as a performance rotary alternative to the piston variant sedans of the age, restyle the nose/taillights/interior and badging of an existing model (Mazda3?) - add in lots of rotary cues ala Rx-8/Rx-3 (steering wheel bages, seat trim, door trim, etc).

I like the idea about keeping some of the original 70's colours available, the Rx-3 red/white/royal blue/brg would be great, but I suspect things like the earth green and the baby yellow would not be popular.

Optional dressup parts would be nice, things like spoilers, interior upspec (leather?), lowered suspensions..
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subject:
Technical Services Coordinator
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
After driving through a horrible winter in the east, I'm ready for an AWD rotary powered vehicle. Rod Millen did it in ProRally back in the 80's.

My '91 RX-7 with Bridgestone Blizzaks were pretty good, my '93 street port RX-7 with Dunlop street tires just slid everywhere on a dusting of snow.

AWD or FWD isn't a panacea, but it sure would help.

I think the masses would enjoy a front wheel drive rotary. Something priced to compete with those pesky Honda's would be nice. Rotary powered Protege badged an RX - something would be nice.

I think the RX-3 looks like a muscle car more than anything else. The new Mustang GT concept looks awesome. I'm not sure how a rotary powered Mustang copy would fly... probably not very well.

I think Protege body, Front wheel drive drivetrain (how would you do the tranny?), rotary power, and an affordable price is the way to go. Don't worry if the chasis can't handle the power... Mustang's have been doing that since the 60's and they're still one of the most popular cars around! If you can price it around 15,000--you've just tamed the import market. Forget Civics.

Do what Nissan is doing with engines... they throw them in everything! ...but only keep it to sport applications.

Also education. True2Form in Fogelsville, PA had no idea how to handle my RX-7 when I got in an accident. Dumb salespeople and Dumb mechanics... this occurs even at MAZDA dealerships!!! They need education fast!!! The USA is huge and needs lots of coverage for qualified repairs... most people think all rotaries do is smoke and blow up.

TP
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
300hp supercharged sport repu. I would be able to own nothing but rotaries. It would produce the power down low where a truck sometimes needs it, and would eat other mini-trucks alive. I can see it in mini-truckin already.

Also there are a lot of tech junkies in the sport compact scene. Many who would much rather turbo their 1.6 liter, rather than swap to a 2.0 liter. A rotary that they could afford would be a hot cake. It would be the starting block (pun intended) of many young racers that love the performance biased attitude of the rotary.

rx-3 small fastback low and sporty stance, plenty of go (200+) plenty of turn as well. Just keep the car light evenly balaced, and affordable. This car should be the entry into the rotary, and should not be a dissapointment. Also build it to take boost, because it will be turbocharged wheter mazda likes it or not.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
well if Mazda is listening to this ...
I'm thinking about my first car soon and if you released a
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
hmmm this isn't displaying right, it should say:
well if Mazda is listening to this ...
I'm thinking about my first car soon and if you released a
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I think I figured out the problem:
I'm thinking about my first car soon and if you released a sub $20k RWD rotary RX-3 I would buy it in a flash!
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subject:
I vote yes to a RX-3
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I was a big fan of the MX3 and MX6/Probe hatchback/fastback coupes and ownd a 1990 Probe for 13 years now I drive a MP5 and I'm planing on tradeing up to a RX-8 in around 3-5 years - the only thing holding me back is that the RX-8 is NOT a fastback/hatchback!

But if Mazda offered a RX-3 or even aRX-6 fastback/hatchback coupe, that would solve my problem!

Please Mazda!
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subject:
RX-3
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I spoke to one of our mazda Reps and they knew of the rx-3 idea as soon as I started to say something. I asked him and he said he does read the comments here on rotarynews.com That is awesome. Way to go Mazda, thanks for taking the time to pay attention to what customers think. I will purchase every rotary engine vehicle they can produce, repu, RX-3, RX-5(RE MX-5), RX-7, and already have the RX-8 on the way.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Next RX7: I sure do hope that Mazda is able to build this car. In terms of styling and performance, I'm hoping for something that is relatively as capable as the FD was back in 1992 -- i.e., performs with the world's best. I also hope that Mazda designers are able to build a 4th gen RX7 that is as sexy as the 3rd gen, which is one of the most beautiful cars ever built, IMO.

In terms of engine, it would be nice to see Mazda offer the 4th gen FD in both NA and turbocharged trim. Perhaps a 1.5-1.6L NA rotary making around 300 hp, and a mildly turbocharged version of the same motor in the 400 hp range. IMO, it's good to offer the car with both motor variants, becuase then buyers can choose the model they want, or that is consistent with their pocketbook. Also, this option looks good, becuase, thanks to the Renesis and added displacement, even an NA version of an RX7 would be an excellent performer.

Please Mazda, build us another supercar -- by my definition, a great looking car with world-class performance that is engineered to stand up to some track duty.
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subject:
RX3
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I almost forgot to mention that I'd like to see an AWD, turbocharged, Sti-fighting, EVO-killing RX3. Such a car would haul some serious booty.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I totally agree. Thanks Mazda for listening to what we have to say!
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subject:
Mazda is listening...?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Had a chance to check back in on this site. It is quite interesting.

So...Guys at Mazda read this...awesome!! A company who actually listens.

Ok, Madzaguys.....this just might be the year I finally decide to buy a new car. A really nice job contract has come up..and when it is done, it is shopping time. I know the RX-8 is out (congrats on having the stones to bring out SOME kind of rotary)

Remember, please (pretty please?)..if you are developing a new rotary car:

RWD!!!!
2door coupe
Renesis with "bulletproof" tranny and diff
Great handling/steering...do it!! So it might ride a little stiff....
Room for a 'real human'
Bring back some of your unique styling details
No "lifestyle fluff" as std. equipment....think lightweight!
I could care less about in car entertainment, cupholders and cubbyholes, cell phone jacks, etc.

Build it solid and tight, as equipped above..for about 15 grand tops...

And I would be a pleased new customer.

If you can not, or are not, doing this....will you be offering the Renesis as a crate motor?? I may just have to find an old RX coupe and perfom a transplant to get what I want.
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subject:
Bring It!
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I think even a small volume rwd coupe with a rotary would do wonders for Mazda's image. Now is the time to redefine the company. Zoom Zoom is a cute ad slogan, if you want to give it teeth and to make the public think of Mazda a passioante car company make a drivers car in the $16-18k range.

I think the Miata has shown that ouput can be modest if the driving experience is second to none.
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subject:
Please build it as a 2+2 fastback/hatchback
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Sorry in my earlier comment I forgot to add that IMHO the new RX-3 (or RX-6) should be a 2+2, but it doesn't need to be 5-doors, but a 3-door fastback/hatchback with fold down rear seats would be OK. That leaves the RX-7 to be a 2-seat-2 door coupe (and convertible) and the RX-8 to be the 2+2 four-door coupe (and convertible) ... I think that would be a nice stable of RX rotary sport cars.

Is it at all possible that the RX-3 could also have a hybrid gas/electric rotary system?

Oh, I'd also like to add that maybe after the RX-7 makes it's comeback ... maybe the RX-3 &/or RX-6 can have more storage space in the rear trunk than the RX-8 (how about room for 4 golf bags)! Maybe the RX-3 &/or RX-6 can be positioned as more of an entry level (less of a high performance) but more of a "practical" rotary sports car that offers better cargo area with the acknowledged (possible) cost to less engine performance due to more weight ... but that keeps the RX-7 pure to it's history as the ultimate high performance RX-rotary car ...
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subject:
Oops, I forgot ...
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Of course there should a Mazda Speed version too!
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subject:
You build it, I'll buy it!
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
If Mazda builds a rear wheel drive small coup or sedan with a rotary for 15k to 20k, I would buy one in a New York minute.
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