Is Mazda Secretly Working On A Rotary-Powered Sports Car?

Mazda remains intrinsically linked to the rotary engine which, according to senior executives within the company, might just make a (long awaited) comeback.

Of course, we’ve heard this all before. In fact, Mazda officials have, in the past 18 months, suggested lots of times that the rotary could return. However, the automaker has failed to commit to a new rotary-powered sports car.

Despite this, Mazda North American design director Julien Montousse recently told Motoring that the carmaker continues to secretly working on a new rotary.

“When I go to Hiroshima, there are some buildings where I’m not even allowed to go, where you know they’re working on something that they truly trust is the future, there’s such passion, and they’re protecting it to a point where I can’t even have access, but I know it’s very promising,” he said.

According to Montousse, revising the rotary engine into something suitable for strict emissions regulations has become somewhat of a passion project for the company.

“I mean it’s part of our DNA. Mazda has this kind of insane passion for the brand and what it represents and that engine is part of it. Kogai [Mazda CEO] mentioned many times that we would only come out with it when it’s ready and when it makes sense.

“For the past 15 years they’ve never stopped [working on rotary]. I know they’re working on it extremely hard, and with considerable investment behind it,” he said.

In October, Mazda confirmed that the rotary will return in 2019 but act as a range extender for an electric model. It seems as though enthusiasts will have to wait a little longer for a high-performance rotary to follow suit.


  • brn

    Secretly? Maybe, but I don’t think it’d surprise anyone. There’s constant chatter.

  • rover10

    Well, this is a bloody good clue! If this was ever built, it would be the car of the decade.

  • Larry Qualls

    Mazda, please…..stop playing with my emotions! I know that you’ve developed the necessary technology. You now have an SUV, Sadan, Compact, and Sports Car in concept form that can be put into production. If its up market that you want, make these damn cars happen! And make them happen now!!!

    • Six_Tymes

      spot on

    • Tumbi Mtika


      • Larry Qualls

        Is that singular or plural? I feel you tho, they can have both of them!

    • Nordschleife

      Is Mazda really playing with your emotions or is media outlets that constantly keep reporting on this playing with them?

      • Larry Qualls

        No it’s Mazda. They consistently put out these incredibly passionate and beautiful concepts that really could change the game, yet they’re not produced. Seriously, it’s just me seeing the possibilities.

        • AstonMartin

          You are absolutely right. If Mazda ever realized what they truly had and pushed these recent concepts thru to production stage they would be the leader in each respective category. The recently revealed sedan coupe concept is as stunning as the amazing Vision RX. I can stare endlessly at the images of both. Mazda, realize your greatness rest in the possibilities.

          • Larry Qualls

            Thank you AMar.
            I concur! Could you please use your contact within Mazda to let them know they have buyers waiting PLEASE???
            The spirit tells me that you can make this happen…

          • Larry Qualls

            I concur!!

  • Rocket

    The same old rumors keep replaying over and over. At this point it’s just white noise. You’d think Mazda’s PR folks would understand that such headline garnering tactics lose their effectiveness when abused.

  • Honda NSX-R

    They said they’re working on an electric car that uses a rotary as a range extender so that’s pretty much the rotary sports car, and they said the rotary wouldn’t be back until 2021 or so.

  • HotnCool

    I don’t think so…

  • Six Thousand Times

    I sure hope they are. Feels like too much to hope for, though.

  • Tumbi Mtika

    Ahh, it’s that time of the year again…


  • Mynameis Taylor

    I want to like it…. but I don’t

    • Bo Hanan

      Ditto. Mazda should stop trying to build a luxury sports coupe with an unreliable rotary engine. It didn’t work in the RX8 and just ruined the car. Put a V6 turbo in this car. And save the rotary for a hard top version of the Miata, which could be called RX-6.

  • fgclolz

    The nose on the concepts looks too long for me, not a fan of phallic cars. If they worked on the proportions to make it look like a Maserati GT or even an Aston I might be tempted.

    • Larry Qualls

      I thought you didn’t like phallic cars…Why make it “look like” anything other than a Mazda? Remember Buick already took on the Maserati role, and Ford has Aston on lock!! Ha

  • Alter Ego

    Probably not

  • dubfun

    New Mazda rotary sports car, Corvette mid-engine, flying cars and Bigfoot. What do these have in common?

  • Karl

    Absolutely stunning indeed! Mazda’s design director is the new maestro…

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