Remember the stunning RX-Vision concept from last year? Mazda says it could actually build it.
Speaking to Top Gear, Mazda’s design director Kevin Rice said the company would “love to build it.” However, creating a viable business case appears to be tricky since the market for it would likely be on the small side, so it would be difficult to justify the R&D costs. In addition, the RX-Vision shown at last year’s Tokyo Motor Show was just a design study and it lacked the necessary running gear.
That being said, there is a glimpse of hope the concept will make the transition to a production model based on the very positive feedback the RX-Vision received ever since its introduction last October. As explained by Kevin, “In the back rooms at Mazda, we’re still developing it, and when the world’s ready to buy another rotary, we’ll be ready to provide it.” In other words, Mazda wants to see how many people would actually buy the RX revival and if there will be enough demand, it’s going to happen.
Displayed last weekend at Concorso d’Eleganza Villa D’Este, the RX-Vision features a long hood which according to Kevin sits at a certain height specifically to accommodate one type of engine: rotary. From this we can deduct that while only a design study at this point, the concept was envisioned to eventually morph into a production car.
A recent patent application revealed Mazda is working on a new turbocharged rotary engine which is believed to deliver more than 400 horsepower (298 kilowatts). Some say the “RX-9” (name not confirmed) will be launched in 2020 when Mazda is going to celebrate its centenary. Here’s hoping it will actually happen.