Mazda Launches Skyactiv-X Engine in Europe, Fuel Economy and Power Revealed

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

Mazda fans on this side of the Atlantic will have to wait patiently for their turn, as the innovative Skyactiv-X-powered Mazda 3 now available in Europe won’t show up here for some time.

On Wednesday, the company announced that continental buyers can begin placing orders for models equipped with a Spark Plug Controlled Compression Ignition (SPCCI) 2.0-liter four-cylinder, tossing out fuel economy and power figures along the way.

Deliveries aren’t imminent. Like those in Japan, customers in Europe will have to wait until the fall before their vehicle arrives. Positioned (and priced) above the 2.5-liter Mazda 3 buyers know and love, the Skyactiv-X engine combines spark-controlled gasoline combustion and compression-ignition diesel tech with the aim of making more power and achieving greater fuel economy.

Mazda doesn’t have a single hybrid vehicle in its lineup, remember.

According to Mazda, the new engine makes 178 horsepower and 164 lb-ft of torque, assisted in its power and MPG goals by an 24-volt M Hybrid mild-hybrid system. Like the model sold in North America, this version of the 3 can be had as a sedan or hatch, front- or all-wheel drive, with a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. (U.S. buyers see very limited stick-shift availability; Canadians, not so much.)

As Mazda’s fuel economy figures are drawn from the WLTP test cycle, a direct translation into EPA figures is a best-guess scenario. The newer WLTP cycle is more accurate than figures obtained from the previous NEDC cycle, but it still represents an upward climb from EPA figures. Fifteen percent greater? Eighteen? Twenty? You mileage will indeed vary.

Regardless, the thriftiest Mazda 3 (a manual front-drive sedan with 16-inch wheels) returns a combined 43.6 mpg on the WLTP cycle. Springing for an automatic base sedan brings that figure down to 39.2 mpg, while an AWD automatic hatch with wider 18-inch rubber naturally returns the worst fuel economy — 34.1 mpg.

Accurate North American figures will have to wait. Thus far, the automaker has not nailed down a target date for the Skyactiv-X’s arrival, with Mazda North American Operations CEO Masahiro Moro recently saying the engine is on the company’s roadmap. Mazda plans to introduce the engine in various regions when it feels the timing is right.

Tardy North American engine introductions, of course, are nothing new for Mazda.

[Image: Corey Lewis/TTAC, Mazda]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Jun 05, 2019

    We do not really need all these complications. 2.0L displacement most likely related to the engine displacement taxation in Europe.

  • SuperCarEnthusiast SuperCarEnthusiast on Jun 14, 2019

    Mazda went with only a 24 volt instead of the standard 48 volt lithium battery pack! Cost cutting at it best here!

  • 3-On-The-Tree Lou_BCsame here I grew up on 2-stroke dirt bikes had a 1985 Yamaha IT200 2-strokes then a 1977 Suzuki GT750 2-stroke 750 streetike fast forward to 2002 as a young flight school Lieutenant I bought a 2002 suzuki Hayabusa 1300 up in Huntsville Alabama. Still have that bike.
  • Milton Rented one for about a month. Very solid EV. Not as fun as my Polestar, but for a go to family car, solid. Practical EV ownership is only made possible with a home charger.
  • J Love mine, but the steering wheel blocks dashboard a bit, can't see turn signals nor headlights icons. They could use the upper corners of the screen for the turn signals. Mileage is much lower than shown too, disappointing
  • Aja8888 NO!
  • OrpheusSail I once did. My first four cars were American made, and through an odd set of circumstances surrounding a divorce, I wound up with a '95 Nissan Maxima which was fourteen years old and had about 150,000 miles on it.It was drove better, had an amazing engine, and was more reliable than any of my American cars. This included a new '95 GMC pickup that went through five alternators in under two years while the dealership insisted that there was no underlying electrical problem while they tried to run the clock on the warranty.That was the end of 'buy American'. I've bought from Honda and VW since, and I'll consider just about anything except American now.