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The Revival of the Rotary Engine: Your thoughts?


Dottie
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That's right, the engine that half of you forumers probably never heard of makes its (for some people, long awaited) return back to civilization. Mazda has developed a concept car that uses a rotary engine. The RX Vision.

 

mazda-rx-vision-concept-001-1.jpg

 

 

Some little side notes. The rotary has not been in a production car since the Mazda RX-8 (EOP date of 2012), but Mazda has experience developing rotary engine cars since the early 1960's.

 

I want to know your thoughts on the car and the concept of reviving the rotary engine in today's society. Do you think it'll be a success? Plagued with issues? What about fuel economy (spoiler alert, its a rotary, don't expect much ;) ) How will it meet the stringent emissions standards? Will it spark the return of other types of engines lost in history? who knows

 

My thoughts:

 

 

I think this is a good thing for Mazda. Even with the rotary's history of terrible fuel economy, automobile technology has made significant advancements (even after just a few years since the RX-8 was stopped) in order to combat the low fuel economy.

 

It definitely looks like its going to be a pricey vehicle indeed that will compete with the current mid range sports cars. Guessing the weight is quite challenging since this is such a large vehicle because cars that size can weigh 3000 lbs or 5000 lbs. I'm guessing in the lower 3000 range but I'd be very surprised if its lower (especially with all the crap companies shove into cars these days)

 

It looks very nice, even though it is quite a long car. The name's a little meh. The car looks proportional and I'm hoping if it goes into production, that it looks similar to the concept.

 

 

Edited by Dottie
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To kill off the RX7 and RX8, and then to show this off years later is kind of silly. It probably won't meet emissions standards. There's a reason why V8's are disappearing, much less the non existent rotary.

VWSTp.png

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I think the rotary revival is a good thing. More choice generally is. But the rotary engine's primary problem is that it's not designed for use in road cars. It's rather like gas turbines- peak efficiency is only in a very small band at the top of the rev range, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in a road car. They work well as APUs for charging batteries and in light aircraft which spend most of their time at WOT, and reasonably well in racing cars, but they're as fundamental a mismatch as a method of drive for road cars as a turboshaft would be.

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Variety is the spice of life, even if being different means you have to overcome hurdles the path most take don't have to overcome.

 

As performance engines, I think the rotary is an excellent choice. It didn't work on the RX8 because it was trying to be too many things at once. It was trying to be civil, yet fun. Which it did manage, but at the cost of torque, horrid economy and odd maintenance schedules, which are simply unacceptable for a daily driver sports car.

 

If Mazda manages to fix the three issues of the rotary, namely economy, reliability, and drivability, then I think this car has the potential to be the one of the greatest sports cars of this era.

 

But I am a rotary fanboy, so of course anything with spinning doritos gets my full on support.

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Find me a GS Rotary and I'll be impressed. Or a Ro80.

 

Sorry about that.

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great points so far :^: The biggest obstacle for this car I'd see with it so far would be passing US and European emissions tests (especially California and I mean especially California) without too much sacrifice in available power. Fuel economy probably isn't a huge concern if you are able to afford this car, along with many other expensive sports cars.

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great points so far :^: The biggest obstacle for this car I'd see with it so far would be passing US and European emissions tests (especially California and I mean especially California) without too much sacrifice in available power. Fuel economy probably isn't a huge concern if you are able to afford this car, along with many other expensive sports cars.

Sorry to be that guy but to meet these standards it will probably be a hybrid.

9H7Sj34.jpg


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great points so far :^: The biggest obstacle for this car I'd see with it so far would be passing US and European emissions tests (especially California and I mean especially California) without too much sacrifice in available power. Fuel economy probably isn't a huge concern if you are able to afford this car, along with many other expensive sports cars.

Sorry to be that guy but to meet these standards it will probably be a hybrid.

 

Well sorry Californians, no spinning doritos for you :p

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After seeing the recalls the RX owners I knew had with the rotaries, I'm a little apprehensive. They must've found this option somehow advantageous to combat EPA emissions, as it's not to showcase reliability. That's my take.

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I think the rotary revival is a good thing. More choice generally is. But the rotary engine's primary problem is that it's not designed for use in road cars. It's rather like gas turbines- peak efficiency is only in a very small band at the top of the rev range, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in a road car. They work well as APUs for charging batteries and in light aircraft which spend most of their time at WOT, and reasonably well in racing cars, but they're as fundamental a mismatch as a method of drive for road cars as a turboshaft would be.

 

f*cking racist hypocrite.

 

rotar power.

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I go with the idea of why prefer using an up-down motion for turning wheels on a car.

The rotary engine was a good idea:

A sort-of electric-motor that uses fuel, lol.

 

But in 2015 time has changed. The wankel-engine should be left in its grave: It was good while it lasted.

 

These days I'd buy a Tesla P85D. It seats 7, goes like hell and looks sexy too

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I think the rotary revival is a good thing. More choice generally is. But the rotary engine's primary problem is that it's not designed for use in road cars. It's rather like gas turbines- peak efficiency is only in a very small band at the top of the rev range, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in a road car. They work well as APUs for charging batteries and in light aircraft which spend most of their time at WOT, and reasonably well in racing cars, but they're as fundamental a mismatch as a method of drive for road cars as a turboshaft would be.

f*cking racist hypocrite.

 

rotar power.

Oh dear, looks like I'm going to yet again have to make you look like an idiot.

 

Everything I've said there is factually true. From an engineering perspective, naturally aspirated rotary engines are at peak efficiency (IE maximising the power output for the minimum consumed fuel) in a narrow rev range. This is simply a limitation of the design; it's not really possible to have a rotary engine with an efficient gas seal under a variety of thermodynamic conditions because of the expansive effects of heating. The value of rotaries in light aircraft, APUs and racing cars is that they typically only utilise a small portion of the rev band 90% of the time, and are never really left idling or on low-RPM situations for prolonged periods of time where their benefits over the piston engine in terms of power-to-weight and power-to-volume aren't really realised. It's only fairly recently we've seen rotaries which approach stoichometric efficiency and even then it's usually required forced induction. Conversely, and largely due to the comparatively massive spend on technology, we now have petrol engines capable of prolonged lean burn without knock; of course rotaries are intrinsically knock free but the irregular shape of the combustion chamber causes inefficient burning of fuel which worsens the further you get from stoichometric. Hence the comparatively large throttling losses I've already mentioned.

 

Of course, you'd probably know some or all of this if you weren't a delusional fanboy with absolutely no technical knowledge at all.

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I think the rotary revival is a good thing. More choice generally is. But the rotary engine's primary problem is that it's not designed for use in road cars. It's rather like gas turbines- peak efficiency is only in a very small band at the top of the rev range, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in a road car. They work well as APUs for charging batteries and in light aircraft which spend most of their time at WOT, and reasonably well in racing cars, but they're as fundamental a mismatch as a method of drive for road cars as a turboshaft would be.

f*cking racist hypocrite.

 

rotar power.

Oh dear, looks like I'm going to yet again have to make you look like an idiot.

 

Everything I've said there is factually true. From an engineering perspective, naturally aspirated rotary engines are at peak efficiency (IE maximising the power output for the minimum consumed fuel) in a narrow rev range. This is simply a limitation of the design; it's not really possible to have a rotary engine with an efficient gas seal under a variety of thermodynamic conditions because of the expansive effects of heating. The value of rotaries in light aircraft, APUs and racing cars is that they typically only utilise a small portion of the rev band 90% of the time, and are never really left idling or on low-RPM situations for prolonged periods of time where their benefits over the piston engine in terms of power-to-weight and power-to-volume aren't really realised. It's only fairly recently we've seen rotaries which approach stoichometric efficiency and even then it's usually required forced induction. Conversely, and largely due to the comparatively massive spend on technology, we now have petrol engines capable of prolonged lean burn without knock; of course rotaries are intrinsically knock free but the irregular shape of the combustion chamber causes inefficient burning of fuel which worsens the further you get from stoichometric. Hence the comparatively large throttling losses I've already mentioned.

 

Of course, you'd probably know some or all of this if you weren't a delusional fanboy with absolutely no technical knowledge at all.

 

Despite being a complete fanboy, I agree with all of this.

 

It's weakness on every day conditions are inherently part of its nature that will be difficult to iron out. IMO Mazda should stop trying to market the rotary as an alternative powerplant for an affordable performance car but rather sell them as crate engines for race teams and tuners, or put them exclusively in higher priced, and high performance super cars, where such quirks are understandable and tolerated.

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I think the rotary revival is a good thing. More choice generally is. But the rotary engine's primary problem is that it's not designed for use in road cars. It's rather like gas turbines- peak efficiency is only in a very small band at the top of the rev range, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in a road car. They work well as APUs for charging batteries and in light aircraft which spend most of their time at WOT, and reasonably well in racing cars, but they're as fundamental a mismatch as a method of drive for road cars as a turboshaft would be.

 

I think its limitations have always been endearing to people who have owned them. Coming from someone who has owned and driven a fair few rotary powered cars; they're not going to make the best daily driver for someone who wants to dink to work and get their shopping done while looking pretty, to be honest (especially outside of stock) they really don't make great daily drivers period, if you run into someone who does its usually out of passion, they'd be the first to admit to you that it probably isnt the most practical car to drive every day; but they drive it because they're a blast to drive ... and the noise and feeling of a rotary at full chat gives them the horn lol. On the point of where it makes most of its usable power; its not exactly rocket science adjusting your driving to match the characteristics of the motor powering it.

 

On the revival, im not sure it's going to pan out. In my opinion it'd work out better for Mazda to have it primarily as a piston powered car and have the RE powered model as a possible limited edition.

Edited by MindCorrupt
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