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Mazda is already discussing Skyactiv 3 as well

Mazda only recently started introducing its Skyactiv engines to its different vehicle models, but the automaker is already talking about the upcoming Skyactiv 2 -- and even Skyactiv 3 -- engines for the next decade and beyond. 
According to a new report from Automotive News, Mazda plans to gain 30 percent better fuel economy with its Skyactiv 2 engines, which are expected to have a 2020 release date. A 30 percent improvement in fuel economy would make the already impressive Mazda3 rise from 29/41 mpg (city/highway) in its more efficient trim to 38/53 on regular unleased gasoline.

2014 Mazda3

Mazda plans to achieve this 30 percent increase in fuel economy by improving the internal combustion of the Skyactiv 2 engines. More specifically, the Skyactiv 2 engine's compression ratio would be bumped up to 18:1 from a current level of 14:1. 
This higher compression is able to reach the same combustion temperature as the current engines, but with a leaner mix of fuel -- meaning improved fuel economy. 
The Skyactiv 2 engines will utilize homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI), which compresses the fuel-air mixture to a high enough pressure and temperature that it ignites by itself without needing a spark. This allows for more complete fuel combustion and lower nitrogen oxide emissions.
However, the Automotive News report indicates that HCCI won't come easy. Engineers must first expand the range of engine speeds for HCCI specifically, because the engine revving too quickly can result in a misfire due to the high number of revolutions, and if revved too slowly, it can misfire due to low temperatures.

2.0-liter Skyactiv four-cylinder engine
Aside from that, engine cooling and the engine's tendency to behave differently based on the use of different fuels need to be figured out.
The main goal with Skyactiv 2 is to meet European carbon dioxide emissions standards of 95 grams per kilometer in 2020, but Mazda is looking even further ahead at meeting Europe's standards of 65 grams per kilometer in 2025 with Skyactiv 3. 
Mazda didn't go into great detail about Skyactiv 3, but the automaker plans to make more energy available for powering the wheels by limiting the fluctuation of heat in the combustion chamber and reduce losses from exhaust and cooling. Mazda hopes to reach well-to-wheel carbon dioxide emissions with Skyactiv 3 that rival electric vehicles.
Mazda first introduced Skyactiv engines to the U.S. market in 2011, starting with the Mazda3 sedan. Since then, they've been added to the Mazda6 sedan and CX-5 crossover.
Mazda has been trying to bring the Skyactiv-D diesel engine to the U.S. via the Mazda6, and was supposed to have achieved this by the second half of 2013. However, in September of last year, it was announced that delays in emissions testing has pushed that timetable to late spring of 2014.

Source: Automotive News

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By Argon18 on 1/6/2014 2:29:11 PM , Rating: 2
I already get 30% fuel economy boost by driving a clean diesel car. Technology that has been on the market for years already. 2008 Mercedes E320 Bluetec. Window sticker said 37 mpg highway, already pretty great for a large RWD sedan, but my real-world MPG has been closer to 41. My old 1997 VW Passat turbo diesel got damn near 50 mpg. But kudos to Mazda for not jumping on the hybrid and electric empty hype bandwagon.

RE: Meh
By TheEquatorialSky on 1/6/2014 2:48:15 PM , Rating: 2
If you are American, you pay more for fuel, purchase price and maintenance... and maybe even SCR.

Diesels don't make a lot of sense in America right now.

RE: Meh
By Argon18 on 1/6/2014 3:23:41 PM , Rating: 1
Yes I am American, but you're wrong about the cost metrics.

The purchase price difference between a gasoline E320 and a diesel E320 was less than $500. On a $50k car, that's negligible.

The fuel doesn't cost more either. Per gallon the price is higher than gasoline, but the improved MPG offsets that, and results in a net $$$ savings.

The maintenance doesn't cost more either. It's about the same.

Lastly, the resale value on my diesel is $thousands more than on the gasoline E320. Look up the price of a 2008 E320 Bluetec and compare it to the same year, same mileage gasoline model. I will make many $thousands on resale, over a gasoline model, when I decide to sell.

As for "Diesels don't make a lot of sense in America right now", you couldn't be more wrong. Diesels deliver their maximum efficiency cruising on the freeway (vs. in-town traffic). What's one thing that America as a whole shit-ton of, way more than any other country? Miles and miles of wide open space, all connected by interstate highways.

Riddle me this Batman: If gasoline engines are so superior, why then do the largest and most expensive machines (here in the USA) all have diesel engines? 18 wheeler trucks, heavy construction equipment, military tanks and heavy vehicles, train locomotives, etc? Hint: it's because diesels are more efficient, more reliable, and more durable.

RE: Meh
By TheEquatorialSky on 1/6/2014 4:02:03 PM , Rating: 2
The average car doesn't cost $50k, hence the diesel premium for the average buyer is more significant.

I randomly chose Houston, TX for prices, and diesel costs 10% more than 87 octane. So best case scenario gives the diesel ~20% advantage. Spend the diesel purchase premium on a hybrid and you get the efficiency of a diesel *with* the cheap price of 87 octane.

Modern diesels cost more to maintain, with turbos, high pressure pumps/injectors, DPF... and on some you even have to occasionally buy SCR fluid. Add that to the fact that diesels are almost exclusive to the VW Autogroup, which isn't known for reliability.

The resale on a hybrid is thousands more as well.

Population is growing at a faster rate than road construction. Open highway in Nevada means little when you're commuting in D.C. traffic everyday to get to work... City fuel economy is the more important metric for Joe Schmoe.

18 wheelers used to use gasoline engines, until the low price of diesel switched them over in the '60s. Some are switching over to natural gas for the same reasons today. The military uses diesels partially for fuel commonality and safety (non-explosive). Diesel engines are commercially utilized for their efficiency, but commercial vehicles operate under different circumstances than personal vehicles. Riddle me this: Why does the M1 Abrams use a gas turbine? Answer: It was designed for different circumstances.

RE: Meh
By protomech on 1/6/2014 4:48:10 PM , Rating: 2
Currently in the US you can buy a 2.1L diesel E250 I4 Bluetec or a 3.5L gas E350.

The E250 I4 Bluetec costs $51400, weighs 4200 pounds, accelerates from 0-60 in 7.9 seconds, and is rated at 28/45 mpg.

The E350 V6 costs $51900, weighs 4012 pounds, accelerates from 0-60 in 6.4 seconds, and is rated at 21/30 mpg.

So as long as you're willing to give on performance and weight, diesel actually saves a bit up-front and substantially in the long term.

RE: Meh
By Mint on 1/6/2014 3:49:17 PM , Rating: 2
Most people don't live or work on the highway.

Combined mileage is what matters. You cherry-picking a number doesn't make diesel better than hybrids in the real world.

Besides, the US could never switch to diesel in more than a minor way. Both gas and diesel come out of a barrel of oil and globally we're close to maximizing the fraction of diesel we get out of a barrel of oil. Europe exports their leftover gasoline to the US.

Higher diesel use will increase diesel price while dropping gas price (at least relative to a world without that diesel push) until people stop switching over to diesel.

RE: Meh
By TheEquatorialSky on 1/6/2014 4:07:12 PM , Rating: 2
...but diesels can run on:

1. vegetable oil! Chemical engineers just need to figure out how to increase extraction rates from its natural sources... fast food restaurants, Costco, the faces of pubescent children.

2. Unicorn urine! They're hard to catch, but they pee more than a racehorse.

RE: Meh
By mindless1 on 1/6/2014 11:23:50 PM , Rating: 2
Great, now let's grow more corn so we can run cars off the oil. That strategy worked really well for methanol didn't it???

Or do you mean let's build an infrastructure for capturing and refining then redistributing waste oil, as if that kind of program has no overhead?

Things are the way they are because our currently utilized tech makes it the best economic choice. As Mint already pointed out, there's the issue of how much diesel vs gas you can get out of a barrel of oil and which any particular region chooses as the dominant fuel source.

In the US it is particularly convenient to be able to use the same gasoline to operate a public road legal vehicle, lawn and garden equipment, snowblowers, small generators, and other consumer oriented equipment. The same can of gas that can fuel my car can also fuel every single thing that most people own that have internal combustion engines.

RE: Meh
By Monkey's Uncle on 1/7/2014 4:00:00 PM , Rating: 2
2. Unicorn urine! They're hard to catch, but they pee more than a racehorse.

I have some of that for sale if anyone is interested. Give me a few hours lead time - I have to feed him a dozen beer to get the *ehrm*fuel factory going first.

"Folks that want porn can buy an Android phone." -- Steve Jobs

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