Mazda's SkyActiv technologies – Click above for high-res image gallery

Mazda has selected its direct-injected, 1.3-liter gasoline powerplant to head the launch of the automaker's SkyActiv engines. On May 18th, Mazda officially unveiled the 1.3-liter four-cylinder engine at the Automotive Engineering Exposition at the Pacifico Yokohama convention center near Tokyo, Japan.

The SkyActiv-G 1.3-liter mill features a compression ratio of 14.0:1 and has been engineered to be highly efficient, especially under high load at low rpm. To avoid engine knock, Mazda fitted the 1.3-liter with technologies such as piston cavities that optimize combustion and multi-hole injectors that enable precise fuel control.

Mazda will launch the SkyActiv-G 1.3 in the facelifted Demio (Mazda2) in Japan. Combined with an updated version of automaker's idle-stop system and a continuously variable transmission, the Demio's fuel efficiency comes in at 30 kilometers per liter (70.56 miles per gallon U.S.) under Japan's 10-15 mode test cycle.

As of February, 2011, Mazda had applied for more than 130 patents related to its SkyActiv-G 1.3-liter engine.


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  • 30 Comments
      poopoohead100
      • 3 Years Ago
      I really don't care if Mazda can actually break the 70mpg mark or not. As long as they continue making fun to drive cars, then I'll be happy.
      Engineous
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm excited about Mazda going forward...
      Jim
      • 3 Years Ago
      I hope to god that thing has a timing chain and not a belt; 'cos that's the interference engine from hell.
      Temple
      • 3 Years Ago
      14:1 compression ratio is incredibly high. Its pretty near an Otto-diesel engine, especially being that Mazda lowered their Sky-D diesel to 14:1 as well. So the their diesel and gasoline engines have the same compression ratio (probably helps Mazda keep costs low). Sounds like an amazing engine.
        Jim
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Temple
        as I understand it, the lower compression ratio (for the diesel) helps reduce NOx emissions from the chamber, so there's less to clean up in the exhaust system.
        KaiserWilhelm
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Temple
        From what I read, they use a low compression in the diesel to allow for lighter internal components, reducing friction and increasing efficiency in that way.
      ottoingineer
      • 3 Years Ago
      Impressive technology, as with others, I will wait to see what the US versions receive. Would be interesting to see the 2.0l version in a MX-5/Miata - improved economy with plenty of "fun to drive". However with a 14:1 compression ratio, the engine will be a lot less "turbo-friendly" than earlier MX-5 powerplants have been. To paraphrase Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) - "The reports of the death of the internal combustion engine are greatly exaggerated!" There is a lot of advancement still at hand with diesel, gasoline, and semi-hybrid tech combinations (regen braking, stop-start, KERS-type systems, etc)
      Seph
      • 3 Years Ago
      is this a mechanical engineer's wet dream? or a vtec moment for mazda? i hope they can capitalize on this innovation this time around.. looking forward to this new mazda 2..
      Master Austin
      • 3 Years Ago
      I remember hearing the same thing with their new 2.0L "SkyActive" engine, and how glorious and fuel efficient it would be, blah blah...When it finally came out, it made less power than the Ford 2.0L in the Focus, with almost as good fuel economy. IN other words, "really? Why bother? Just get it from Ford"...So I'm skeptical of how efficient this one will be. Ford also has a Euro 1.3L, lets see if again Mazda will come in with less HP and acheive barely the same MPG with this one...
        MLuddyJr
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Master Austin
        The 2012 Mazda3 (with 2.0L SkyActiv) isn't out yet, and therefore there are no official EPA numbers. So far all we have is Mazda's claim of 155hp and 40mpg compared to the Focus at 160hp and 40mpg. The Focus only hits 40mpg with the SFE package. With a manual transmission the new Focus 36mpg. We'll have to wait for real numbers (both city and highway) and actual model variants before declaring Ford the victor.
        mikes
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Master Austin
        Ford gets more power but needs special low rolling resistance tires as well as special wheel covers and other adjustments to reach the 40mpg highway mark in SFE. Mazda does not need to make those compromises to handling to reach their purported 40mpg. We'll see what the real EPA ratings are and of course, what real world driving brings. It's not surprise that Ford does very well considering they are starting from similar engines and have their own bevy of fuel economy improving tech with fancy names.
      FaM
      • 3 Years Ago
      70+mpg in a Mazda? Oh yeah...sounds like a plan if cheap long range electrical cars dont exist by the time my mazda3 wears out. We shall see.
        Kevin W
        • 3 Years Ago
        @FaM
        +1 for you and congrats that your Mazda has lasted. My 2009 feels and sounds like it's falling apart at the seams. Guess it's hit or miss? But I love Mazda's engines! I just don't trust the rest of the car anymore... :(
        NightFlight
        • 3 Years Ago
        @FaM
        Fam + Kevin W. I know someone with a 2004 Mazda3 that has 240K and everything about it is perfect, including the interior. It hasn't needed any major repairs in its entire lifetime, only routine maintenance and replacing wear items. Your MZ3 will last for a LONG time. Kevin W., your experience isn't normal. I know many people who have flawless high mileage Mazdas with 0 issues.
          Kevin W
          • 3 Years Ago
          @NightFlight
          Oh I know and I don't doubt you. And to be honest, my best friend's 2002 Protege feels and sounds better buttoned down than mine. I'm disappointed, but it's not like I go around screaming for Mazda to fail. They make great engines and great handling cars, and hopefully they can bring diesel back to life in the US. That would be a MAJOR coup.
        Kai F. Lahmann
        • 3 Years Ago
        @FaM
        That's the Japanese test cycle, which even get's over 50 mpg in a V8 pickup... The Prius is rated at 35-38 km/l (90 mpg!). So we should read this as "35, maybe 40 mpg".
      Hazdaz
      • 3 Years Ago
      I think before anyone gets all hot and bothered by the 70 mpg claim, lets get this engine in a real car and let it be tested in real world environment (as well as get it certified by the EPA to get its MPG rating). I think Mazda has always had some very clever engineers but I also find it hard to believe that with all the other automakers out there, no one else has really broken the 50 or even 60 MPG number, and yet Mazda has gone all the way up to 70? Whether its differences in the way the cars are tested, or possibly conversion issues, I just don't believe this engine will realistically get above mid-40s to 50 MPG.... which are still amazing numbers. I should expect a car site such as AB would be quick to throw up a disclaimer to remind people that that 70 MPG number is based on Japanese data, but alas that might require AB doing actual work, and that's just too much to ask.
      NightFlight
      • 3 Years Ago
      70MPG on the US cycle? That is absolutely incredible. I hope that we get a Sky-D version in this tiny little thing. That'd be good for 90+MPG.
        nardvark
        • 3 Years Ago
        @NightFlight
        It says 70mpg on the Japanese cycle, not the US cycle.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        bobmarley
        • 3 Years Ago
        that price sounds about right...you could probalby find an older model with the same or less miles for a cheaper price. ...jumping from 15k to 18k+ is a lot more...you probably lose that in depreciation right when you dive it off the lot which is one of the main reasons to buy used.
        NightFlight
        • 3 Years Ago
        NEVER buy a used fleet vehicle. Autotrader.com Seriously, go there and search for within 100 miles of your home.
          • 3 Years Ago
          @NightFlight
          [blocked]
        FaM
        • 3 Years Ago
        No thats not a good deal. I bought a mazda5 rental car for 12500 with 22k miles on it, once I found out it was a rental, I got the price lowered significantly lower than the other identical used cars on the lot. I also just bought an 08 3S Touring hatch early last year for 13400. Leather\auto\side airbags\traction\stability\tpms\6cd\moonroof. Considering yours is a sedan and an i, price should be lower.
      melan
      • 3 Years Ago
      Naysayers - Don't get too focused on the engine alone accomplishing these MPG #'s. Mazda is also focusing their efforts on aerodynamics, lighter materials, and transmission efficiencies in their Sky division. These areas have yet been taken to the next level by domestic auto makers when designing the mom\pop lineups. We only get to see this type of engineering on the higher end models, but know this effort is starting to trickle down. Mazda's grills are hideous at first glance, but when you are driving a 3900lbs with 270hp Mazda CX9 7 seater with 600lbs of cargo with the AC blowing at 80mph and still getting 22mpg you realize aero and weight plays a major roll.
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