Mazda's new SkyActiv-X petrol plans to put the pressure on electric vehicles

7 September |  David Linklater
We've just been to Germany to drive the most hi-tech Mazda3 in existence.
It looks thoroughly unremarkable save a matt-black paintjob, the interior is seemingly made of plastic scraps and it has no airbags or stability control.
But underneath the familiar sheet metal is Mazda's next-generation SkyActiv-X engine and platform technology.
The Japanese maker's current powertrains are SkyActiv-G (petrol) and SkyActiv-D (diesel). The next step is called "X" because it crosses those petrol and diesel technologies over into one engineering package. SkyActiv-X is still fuelled by petrol, but employs compression-ignition just like a diesel, resulting in a 20-30 per cent improvement in efficiency.
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