Mazda’s approach to electric cars has been controversial from the beginning and it seems the carmaker won’t stop from having an original way of building its EV. The Japanese auto manufacturer intends to make its MX-30 SUV feel more like a gas car by purposely tuning the car in this direction.
This is highly likely to translate into a reduced performance of Mazda’s first EV when compared to other vehicles in this line such as the Jaguar I-PACE and Tesla Model Y. However, the approach does not come as a surprise since the carmaker has been clear about not producing EVs with large battery packs.
In an interview with Autocar, Joachim Kunz, Mazda’s head of Product Development and Engineering, explained based on a Japanese University’s study that a 95 kWh battery pack is less eco-friendly than Mazda’s Skyactiv diesel engine. This would justify the company’s decision to use a small 35 kWh battery to power its EV.
The battery used for its MX-30, a Panasonic lithium-ion battery, is expected to provide owners with 130 miles of range, 192 lb-ft of torque, and 141 bhp. It should also enable the car to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 9 seconds.
Since this might not cover all performance needs, Mazda intends to come up with a “range extender system” that uses a compact rotary engine. No specific details regarding this motor have been released, yet the public had the chance to see it at the company’s event for the MX-30 held in Portugal. The MX-30 SUV should enter production in Europe later this year and in the UK next year.