Mazda is planning a turbocharged successor to the much-missed RX-7 that could arrive as soon as 2013.
The new RX-7, which could be called RX-9, according to insiders, will retain the rotary Renesis technology employed by its predecessors and the RX-8.
This is despite the RX-8 – production of which will end next month – suffering from a shortage of torque and poor fuel economy.
But Mazda is considering a wide range of radical options to help the powerplant deliver better economy and the torque required to keep pace with rivals like the VW Scirocco.
One source told us: “We’re testing the rotary in conjunction with technologies including an electric turbocharger.”
The new model is seen as ideal candidate for the Nagare design language, which is inspired by nature – in particular, wind and flowing water – and produced five highly rated concepts in 2006 and 2007.
Nagare will not feature on any future Mazda concept cars (the firm will reveal a new design direction in the autumn) but it will still make it on to the firm’s upcoming production cars, including the newly launched 5.
Employing Nagare’s side panel creases should prove a more straightforward process on the RX-9 sports car.