|SKYACTIV-D racing engine. Click to enlarge.|
Mazda Motorsports will supply racing versions of the new SKYACTIV-D diesel engines (earlier post) to customer teams competing in GRAND-AM’s newly announced GX Class for advanced/clean technologies, beginning with the 2013 season.
The engines—stock-block Mazda SKYACTIV-D 2.2-liter diesel four-cylinder, dual-stage turbocharged powerplants—are being developed jointly by Mazda Motor Corporation, Mazda North American Operations and SpeedSource Engineering. Dyno testing has already begun and on-track testing begins in late 2012. Engine pricing and terms will be announced at a later date.
The actual Mazda model in which the SKYACTIV-D racing engine will be installed will be announced after the conclusion of the 2012 GRAND-AM racing season.
The GRAND-AM GX class join the series’ headlining Daytona Prototype (DP) and the production-based Grand Touring (GT) classes. The models—and some manufacturers—will be unique to GX.
The production-based GX competition will feature cars and technologies not currently involved in the Rolex Sports Car Series. Rules are being developed to allow for the exploration of a wide variety of alternative technologies and alternative fuels. This could include turbocharged engines; fuels other than gasoline, such as clean diesels; and hybrid powertrains.
The class will be developed with performance levels that complement the current DP and GT classes. No changes to GT performance levels are expected.
This opens a new chapter in racing for us. We’ve won with rotary technology, and now we’re looking to again put our customers in the winner’s circle with what we believe will be the most advanced and cleanest production-based powerplant the sport has ever seen.—Jay Amestoy, Vice President MNAO
Mazda remains the only Asian auto maker committed to bringing modern diesel technology to the United States. The production Mazda SKYACTIV-D features include:
- 14:1 low compression ratio
- New two-stage turbocharger
- A 5,200 rpm redline
Compared to Mazda’s current-production 2.2L MZR-CD diesel engine, the SKYACTIV-D delivers up to a 20% reduction in fuel consumption; 20% reduction in internal engine friction; and 10% reduction in weight.
Mazda Motorsports is the only Asian car company with an overall win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Since 2007, Mazda has been competing in the GRAND-AM GT class with the rotary-powered RX-8. Mazda racers have secured manufacturers, team and drivers championships, along with 2008 and 2010 GT-class wins by the SpeedSource RX-8 in the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The RX-8 is no longer in production for the US market.