Mazda is betting that their new lineup of SKY direct injection gasoline and diesel engines will help raise the company's fleet fuel economy by 30% by 2015.
Mazda, which has long refrained from hybrid cars, claims that the next generation 2015 Mazda3 with a SKY-G gasoline engine and a Sky-Drive 6-speed automatic will get 40 mpg on the highway, up from 33 mpg. The Mazda6 will get a SKY-D diesel engine that will get 43 mpg on the highway, a bump from 30 mpg on the current car.
While Mazda said that the first SKY-G powered car will arrive in 2011, they were tight-lipped about what car would receive it. Signs point to the next generation MX-5 as the most likely candidate.
Despite the investment in the SKY powertrains, Mazda said it would introduce a hybrid in the near future, with technology licensed from Toyota. "We have a plan to introduce [the technology] gradually, starting from simple devices," Seita Kanai, director of r&d for Mazda Motor Corp. told Automotive News. "The more complex a device is, the more costly it becomes."
More: Mazda Claims SKY Engines Will Match Hybrid Fuel Economy on AutoGuide.com