Mazda 2 EV range extender prototype first drive Review | Autocar

31 Aug 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Mazda 2 EV range extender prototype first drive Review | Autocar
Mazda 2

EV range extender first drive review

is it?

A Mazda 2 supermini re-engineered as an car and powered by a 20kwhr, 346 volt battery pack fed by a range-extender petrol engine and generator.

already has a Mazda 2 electric in use in Japan, so the range-extender is an incredible engineering solution that the compact rotary engine under the hatchback’s rear floor.

The combustion engine is a rotor of 330cc swept designed to operate at a constant when it pushes out a modest

To maximise space utilisation, the engine is mounted horizontally the rear boot floor with its fuel tank and This sub-assembly is incredibly and looks like it would fit in a suitcase.

The battery pack is under the hatch’s main from where it feeds forward to the 100bhp electric regulator and controller mounted in the bay.

Given the modest capacity, Mazda’s range-extender is to cut in at a relatively low 6mph and to run continuously.

Of there is a weight penalty for around all this technology. And a base-spec Mazda 2 weighs in over 1000kg, the battery adds around 100kg and the extender a further 100kg or so, the total weight out to 1300kg.

Like the BMW i3 range extender. the 2 EV range extender’s range is by its fuel-tank capacity, which matches the new BMW exactly at 9 litres.

draws a further parallel the high-tech BMW, saying early studies indicate CO2 might get close to the carbonfibre i3. BMW 13g/km; Mazda says its extender might hit 15g/km, it stresses that the number yet been measured.

What is it like?

This was a short drive in an early prototype, so it is more appropriate to impressions rather than firm conclusions, but overall the is of a fascinating new powertrain with promise.

Like all electric the Mazda delivers smooth, and instant performance from Acceleration builds gently, to the relatively modest power for the battery and range extender, but a little adrift of the 10.8 to 62mph from rest Mazda quotes.

Responsiveness was as was the refinement on/off the accelerator which says volumes for the of Mazda’s calibration of the motor and its at this early stage.

Mazda 2

There’s also an EV equivalent of a button, which adds braking effort when the is in regeneration mode, but pleasingly hasn’t overdone the stopping so braking is smoother than EVs whose strong regeneration is felt as an unwanted, nose-diving

In this prototype, there been the time to work on of NVH, so the range-extender rotary can be heard thrumming away at speed under the boot reminiscent of a fridge/freezer compressor. The is intrusive in the rear cabin, so in the front.

Mazda says it is looking at how to the noise of the rotary engine and has to whether to silence it or create an note. Another task for the development program.

You also the extra weight in the back, cornering and over bumps, behaviour is similar to a fully hatchback putting its suspension the wringer.

Mazda has fitted rear springs to cope the extra weight of the range-extender pack, but it may need to rethink the and steering to balance out the unusual distribution.

Should I buy one?

This option won’t be any time soon, if ever. But if engineering and innovative problem are any recommendation, yes would be the answer. And the extremely low CO2 figure mooted, ought to be a strong future for fascinating concept.

Mazda 2 EV Extender

Price TBA; 
 10.8 sec; Top speed Economy TBA; CO2 15g/km Kerbweight 1300kg; Engine 330cc. (500cc equivalent); Electric motor 100bhp; range-extender 26bhp @ 2000rpm Electric motor 110lb ft; Not fitted

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