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Auto blogThu, 25 Jul 2013 18:30:00 EST
While it may not be touting the old "Win on Sunday, sell on Monday" axiom we all know and love, Mazda recognizes that racing can only improve its cars. And so it's no surprise that the Japanese automaker is testing and refining its Skyactiv-D diesel engine by sending it out on various race tracks around the country - notably being the first diesel ever to compete at Daytona and the first to notch a Grand Am win at Road Atlanta.
Next up? Indy. It has been over 60 years since a diesel-powered machine ran at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and the Cummins-powered racer that competed in the 1952 Indy 500 with a 6.6-liter inline-six-cylinder oil-burner was a fast and brutal machine that set a new lap record in qualifying leading up to the race. Though that car was withdrawn with turbocharger failure 71 laps in, its diesel powerplant left an indelible impression on the racing community, and that's something Mazda hopes to accomplish once again.
Mazda says that the diesel engine in its race car is pretty darn close to stock - 51 percent stock by parts count, and 63 percent stock by weight - which means the way it performs in competition is at least a somewhat meaningful way to the stock engine's durability in the real world. Check out the image of the Mazda6 Skyactiv-D racer posing alongside the 1952 Cummins above (click to enlarge) and feel free to peruse the press release below for the rest of the details.
The official photos of Mazda's Hazumi concept leaked out yesterday, but we have finally gotten to see it in real life at the Geneva Motor Show. Our view is that its Kodo lines looks as good on the diminutive car's sheet metal as they did in photos.
The Hazumi was designed to appear to be bursting with energy, and it seems to deliver. While Mazda refuses to actually say that this is the concept for the next Mazda2, it makes it clear that the little hatchback is "foreshadowing Mazda's next-generation subcompact car." We can all read between the lines.
Hazumi also introduces the new Skyactiv-D 1.5-liter diesel engine but details about it are scant at the moment. The specs for the engine are still unannounced, but the company promises that it is both very efficient and has lots of torque for its size. Mazda is also promising that its Mazda Connect infotainment system will be available in the car too. Scroll down for the brief press release a brace of videos that celebrate the tiny concept's arrival.
In April, Mazda introduced a marketing campaign titled "Game Changers" to showcase how certain people have made significant impacts in their respective sports, and now it's the Japanese automaker that is changing the game by creating an innovative way to launch a new product. Mazda is teaming up with Xbox to offer a first-of-its-kind live-streaming global debut of a new product. Mazda didn't say which model will be debuted, but our guess is that it will be the next-generation Mazda3.
The actual reveal will take place at 9 pm on June 26 during a live concert from the band Metric in New York City, but there will be other live events preceding the concert in Melbourne, St. Petersburg, Istanbul and London. Mazda will be promoting the event on social media using the hashtag #GameChanger, and there is also a contest on Xbox where one winner will receive $2,500 to attend a music event of their choice. Scroll down for the full details of the contest and vehicle debut event.