In today’s cars, there are various ways to send power to wheels. Besides conventional gasoline and diesel engines, hybrids are also present for a very long time. First gasoline/electric cars appeared 20 years ago and car market is full of these models nowadays. Still, engineers are always in some kind of a quest for more efficient and environment-friendlier powertrains. Because of that, electric vehicles are also in a great expansion these days. Pretty much all manufacturers work on their EVs, competing in terms such as range, efficiency, performances etc. Still, Mazda has been resistant to these technologies so far.
Moreover, this company is constantly working on new solutions that will improve conventional internal-combustion engines. Mazda’s engineers are working on a completely new, SkyActive X engine, which will bring some revolutionary solutions and become probably as efficient as hybrid cars, if not even better.
SkyActiv vs Hybrid Technology future potential
First of all, it is important to say that both of these technologies have a little bit limited potential. As you probably know, most of the countries work on new law regulations that will cut CO2 emissions. It seems that many cities will forbid internal combustion engine in next decade or two. Considering this, it becomes clear that diesel engines will become history pretty soon. Same is with gasoline units, although Mazda claims that the new Sky-Active X technology will be greener than most of the electric motors.
Finally, there are hybrid powertrains. Currently, these cars are in a great expansion. Almost every major carmaker offers at least one hybrid version of popular models. In the future, we are expecting to see whole hybridized divisions which will be the core of manufacturers’ sales numbers.
Although currently hugely popular, hybrid cars are usually seen as some kind of transition to completely electrified vehicles. Because of that, it is quite possible that this type of powertrain will vanish in next decades, especially if we consider that EV cars are already knocking at doors of common people.
SkyActiv vs Hybrid Technology performances
It’s no secret that Mazda works on a new SkyActive X engine. The technology will bring some revolutionary design solutions. This will be the first gasoline engine to use compression ignition. Speaking in common language, this means that the new engine will combine the best from gasoline and diesel engines. The trick is in the variable air-to-fuel mixture, which provides much better efficiency. In numbers, the new engine should have around 30% better economy, as well as 20-30% more power and torque. If we take that first engine to come with new technology will be a 2.0-liter unit, this would mean around 190 horses, instead of current 155. Some reports suggest that the new 2.0-liter unit will be good for about 190 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque.
Speaking of fuel economy, the current Mazda 6 with this engine returns around 26 mpg in the city and 38 mpg. Increase it by 30% and this would be around 34 mpg in the city and almost 50 mpg on a highway. This means at least 40 mpg in a combined drive, which is in a range with most of the hybrid cars with a similar amount of power. Additionally, this engine should be cheaper than most of the hybrid powertrains, and probably more reliable and durable. Let’s not mention a far better driving experience. Still, we will have to wait to see a new SkyActive X in practice and then to make some conclusions in terms like could this technology compete with hybrid cars in terms of fuel economy, CO2 emissions, price, maintenance, durability and other things.