Posted: October 11, 2017
Mazda has a strategic conundrum – a small automaker with a technical and performance reputation that must be maintained, but without the brand appeal that allows it to get the level of transaction prices needed to account for the technology. It has a new EV partnership with Toyota, but Mazda – historically, a hotbed of ICE powertrain innovations – isn’t prepared to make one of the big electrification pronouncements other companies are making. So it is coming out with a high compression engine, the SkyactivX. It will be the first to use HCCI, a Holy Grail for the industry. It’s risky (indeed, is the engine really ready?). But it could be an enlightened move to zig when the rest of the industry zags.
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