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Is Mazda readying a new rotary-engined sports car?

Shadowy teaser for upcoming concept car points to RX-8 successor

“I’d love to see a new one,” Mazda’s Nobuhiro Yamamoto recently told “I have an RX-8 myself, and while I can’t speak about other departments, that’s not to say the future won’t yield another rotary-engined car.”

With that quote in mind, allow us to present what appears to be a coupe concept of some description, teased by Mazda ahead of a Tokyo Motor Show world premiere. Is this the car Yamamoto-san hinted at?

We’ll find out at the end of October, where the as-yet-unnamed concept will form part of Mazda’s Tokyo stand, titled: ‘Accelerate toward our dreams’.

It’s officially billed as a new sports car concept that “clearly embodies [Mazda’s] lineage”, one that “condenses the company’s sports car history” as closely as possible. With the new MX-5 mopping up the entry-level sports car end of Mazda’s range, that would seem to point to a concept in the mould of the RX-7 and RX-8.

A nod to this history – and further proof that this concept might yet be a rotary-engined successor to the RX-8 – comes in the shape of the 1967 Cosmo Sport 110S, which Mazda pointedly notes it will showcase alongside the concept in Tokyo. That Cosmo sported a rotary engine, don’t forget.

“I am a rotary racing engineer,” Yamamoto-san told TG. “That is my background. That’s very important.”

Is there enough enthusiasm within Mazda to reprise the rotary-engined sports car, and build us a potential RX-9? We certainly hope so, because rotary engines are great. Step forward, fans of unmodified MkIII RX-7s…

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