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The mysterious images of a 2012 Mazda RX-9 that we brought you a few days ago appear to be illustrations cooked up by Winding Road magazine's in-house sketch artist Glenn Poblete, who literally drew on Mazda's current design language from the Kabura concept and other recent Mazda showstoppers to come up with a good guesstimate.

As for the heart of the beast, Winding Road figures on a front-engine/rear-drive layout with a limited-slip diff mated to either a rotary engine, in the grandest Mazda tradition, or ditching the Renesis for a more conventional V6 or V8. If Mazda decides to stick with the Wankel engine, it would have to improve on its gas and oil consumption, and it could benefit from a pair of variable turbochargers like in the latest Porsche 911 Turbo. Displacement on an updated Renesis, if chosen, could increase to 1.8-liters (if you consider the current version to displace 1.3-liters) or 3.5 (if you hold the current one at 2.6).

Like our compatriots, we hope Mazda sticks with a purely two-seat set-up instead of trying to squeeze tiny seats in the back, but the RX-9 could gain a suicide rear door to ease access if rear chairs are added. If that were the case, the RX-9 would effectively replace the quasi-four-door RX-8, which is anticipated for a facelift soon.

[Source: Winding Road]



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  • 22 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      The racing regulatory agences such as the ACO and thereby the ALMS, create a huge disparity in the rotary engines DISfavor. Hence Mazda gave up trying to make their P2, with a rotary engine competitive and last year they went with an AER sourced engine instead. Thus we seldom will see a rotary engine competing in a significant sportscar series these days.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I have it on good authority that there is a Mazdaspeed RX8 in the works with a supercharged rotary. Makes 6PSI at idle and has improved oil control. Beyond that my source (read: Mazda tech that was just at Mazda Tech School) didn't go into detail with his instructor like you or I would have.
      • 7 Years Ago
      real or not, i hate the grill on this thing.
      • 7 Years Ago
      it's still a really good-looking, photoshoped car.

      one question: why would one consider an engine to have two, quite different, displacements? where there two different engines to choose from?

      I thought it was only 1.3 liters.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Many people argue that due to the specific way a rotary engine works, the displacement should essentially be doubled to be an accurate comparison to the displacement and power-production of a piston-driven engine.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Rx wouldn't be the same with out the rotary. They just need to do a direct injection setup.

      Direct injection with water injection on a 3 rotor turbo rotary would be great. haha, I think that's a future project for me
        • 7 Years Ago
        Thats because it wouldn't be. Don't people who write this stuff know anything. RX = Rotary Experient.

        If this "make believe" car were to come true, if powered by anything other than a Rotary wouldn't be a RX car.

        Most likely if RWD would be a MX series. Maybe a large Miata MX-5 so say a MX-9 or a reborn RWD MX-6?
        • 7 Years Ago
        Why would a rotary need water injection? Their main problem is low compression ratios, you don't need water injection at low compression ratios.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Still reads like fanboy stuff. This fanboy is taking their favorite car and just dreaming of stuff to be tacked onto it, making sure to include all the latest buzzword items (like variable geometry turbo, two of them no less!).

      I'm a bit shocked it doesn't have a dual-clutch sequential gearbox mentioned in there.

      Anyway, the 2nd gen RX-7 had a twin-scroll turbo, which accomplishes the same thing as a variable geometry turbo, which is to extract maximum power from the lower-flow gases at low revs and small throttle openings.

      It'd be nice to see Mazda make another turbo Wankel, even though they claim the side-port Renesis isn't particularly well suited to one.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Actually twin-scroll turbos and variable geometry turbos (e.g., variable area turbine nozzle) turbos work completely differently and do not exactly accomplish the same thing. For one, twin-scroll turbos do not accomplish much in comparison to non-twin scroll turbos top end, whereas VGTs accomplish a lot with its variable turbine a/r. The only thing VGT and twin-scroll turbos have in common is that they tend to perform better than conventional turbos low end, but even then there are some conventional turbos, such as the Garrett GT Ballistic Series, that outperform twin-scroll turbos.

        Variable geometry turbos are designed to allow the effective aspect ratio (A/R Ratio) of the turbo to be altered as conditions change for better performance. For example, at lower rpms the a/r is less for a lower boost threshold, less lag, better response. At higher rpms the a/r ratio changes to a greater ratio so that the turbo doesn't choke at higher engine speeds, exhaust manifold pressures are decreased, and ultimately power output is increased as a result.

        Twin scroll turbos work differently by requiring a divided exhaust manifold to separate the rotors or cylinders whose cycles interfere with one another to best utilize the engine's exhaust pulse energy. For example, on a four-cylinder engine with firing order 1-3-4-2, cylinder #1 is ending its expansion stroke and opening its exhaust valve while cylinder #2 still has its exhaust valve open (cylinder #2 is in its overlap period). In an undivided exhaust manifold, this pressure pulse from cylinder #1's exhaust blowdown event is much more likely to contaminate cylinder #2 with high pressure exhaust gas. Not only does this hurt cylinder #2's ability to breathe properly, but this pulse energy would have been better utilized in the turbine. The proper grouping for this engine is to keep complementary cylinders grouped together-- #1 and #4 are complementary; as are cylinders #2 and #3. Because of the better utilization of the exhaust pulse energy, the turbine's performance is improved and boost increases more quickly.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Winding Road makes horrible predictions, an Rx-series car with a V8?? Mazda will allows put a rotary engine in an Rx-series car, because RX stands for Rotary Experimental, and there is too much pride, history, and tradition to abandon the rotary in an Rx-series car. If they wanted to make a sports car with a V8, they would create a new model name. In addition, Mazda currently doesn't make a V8, and I doubt they would make a brand new V8 for such a sports car. If anything, they would borrow from the Ford parts bin, but in general, all of it sounds very very unlikely. . .so unlikely I wonder why anyone would even mention it.
      • 7 Years Ago
      If they build that does Glenn Poblete get a check?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Apparently the RX9 doesn't use conventional brakes!
      • 7 Years Ago
      Looks nothing like the original RX-9.

      Looks more like the 2005 SCOOP magazine rendition of the future RX-3.

      Either way, if its rotary powered, lets hope Mazda do build it & provide more choice than just the (very practical) RX-8.

      REgards
      • 7 Years Ago
      lol, the wheels are copied and pasted.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Does anyone trust Winding road anymore? How many times have they been wrong?
      • 7 Years Ago
      The second generation Renesis rotary.

      http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=183733
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