Mazda has already announced plans for an efficient Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) engine but a new patent application suggests the company could also be working on something far more interesting.
Unearthed by Road and Track, the patent application covers a high-tech engine that uses an electric supercharger and two turbochargers. The supercharger would be used to provide low-end power while the exhaust driven turbochargers are being spooled up.
The system is somewhat similar to Volvo’s Drive-E Powertrain concept which was a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine equipped with Triple Boost Technology. Mazda’s system might not produce the 450 hp (335 kW) that Volvo’s did but it would provide a number of benefits including improved performance and virtually no turbo lag.
There’s no word on whether or not the company will actually offer the tri-charged system but speculation suggests the electric supercharger could be powered by Mazda’s capacitor-based i-Eloop system.
Regardless of how the supercharger is powered, the application shows the system being used in a rear-wheel drive vehicle. This automatically brings to mind a high-performance MX-5 or possible RX-8 successor but patents don’t always translate into real products.