Masamichi Kogai, CEO of Mazda, has stated that his company isn’t currently working a sports car larger than the MX-5.
During an interview with Automotive News, Kogai was asked if the company had plans for a “larger sports car entry”, to which he simply stated no.
This seemingly rules out a new rotary-powered sports car in the near future and contradicts an August report in Japan’s Holiday Auto, which claimed that the company was prepping an RX-7 successor for 2020.
The CEO stated that the company is undertaking rotary engine development in order “to overcome any issues we have with emissions and fuel efficiency”.
Although the CEO did note that given the current regulatory outlook and the company’s need for vehicles with zero emissions capability, it was likely that any future production rotary engine would be used first as a range extender before being employed as a primary traction motor.
Last month, though, Kiyoshi Fujiwara, Mazda’s head of research and development, told CarAdvice that because of its driving characteristics, the rotary engine is best suited for a “lightweight sports car” and the company was “considering that kind of models [only]”.
Regarding the partnership agreement that Mazda signed with Toyota in May 2015, Kogai said that electric vehicles, and “connectivity and connected cars” were two areas where the two automakers could “enjoy some synergies”.
First, though, he wants the partners to foster personnel and technology exchanges.