Toyota, Subaru and Mazda to Develop Compact Engines Compatible with Carbon-neutral Fuels

Toyota, Subaru, and Mazda plan to develop new combustion engines that can run on various kinds of carbon-neutral fuels. The upcoming engines will be compact, enabling upcoming vehicles to have lower hoods and improved aerodynamics.

By Sanorita | on May 29, 2024 Follow us on Autox Google News

Despite the increasing shift towards electric vehicles, Toyota, Subaru, and Mazda have confirmed their plans to continue with internal combustion engines. The Japanese trio is committed to developing next-generation engines with a stronger emphasis on electrification and carbon-neutral fuels. The new combustion engines will be smaller than their current counterparts, leading to lower hoods, better design options, improved aerodynamic performance, and enhanced fuel efficiency. Owing to their construction, they will be able to meet the stricter emission norms in different markets. 

The three Japanese automakers believe that the level of carbon emissions is the main problem and not the combustion engine itself. They plan to decarbonise internal combustion engines (ICE) by making them compatible with various kinds of carbon-neutral (CN) fuels. According to automakers, the new engines will be a departure from fossil fuels, supporting a variety of alternative fuels, including liquid hydrogen, biofuels, and e-fuel (synthetic fuel). This will help to increase the utilisation of CN fuels. ‘With these engines, each of the three companies will aim to optimize integration with motors, batteries, and other electric drive units.’

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Though electric cars have grown in popularity recently, Toyota, along with Subaru and Mazda, is pursuing carbon neutrality through a 'multi-pathway' strategy, with cars equipped with a range of propulsion choices. 

The Japanese firms also unveiled some of their prospective powerplants, in addition to the announcements about next-generation engines. Toyota revealed a Prius prototype with a newly developed 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine and a larger 2.0-litre engine. Mazda demonstrated its rotary EV system, which has one or two generator rotors. Subaru, on the other hand, showcased a disguised prototype of the Crosstrek with its next-generation hybrid system.

Despite working together to produce more efficient powertrains, Toyota, Mazda, and Subaru have made it clear that they would continue to be competitors, producing ‘unique engines and cars’. They will continue to develop their 'signature' powertrains, such as rotary (Mazda), in-line four (Toyota), and boxer (Subaru).

Statements From Companies

Koji Sato, President, Member of the Board of Directors, and CEO of Toyota Motor Corporation, said, 'In order to provide our customers with diverse options to achieve carbon neutrality, it is necessary to take on the challenge of evolving engines that are in tune with the energy environment of the future. The three companies, which share the same aspirations, will refine engine technologies through friendly competition.'

Atsushi Osaki, Representative Director, President, and CEO of Subaru Corporation, said, 'Achieving a carbon-neutral society is a challenge that must be undertaken by all of Japan's industries and society as a whole. As we continue to refine electrification technology, we will also enhance our horizontally opposed engines with an aim to use carbon-neutral fuels in the future. Moving forward, the three companies sharing the same aspiration will continue to advance the pursuit of sustainable excellence in Japanese car manufacturing.'

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Masahiro Moro, Representative Director, President, and CEO of Mazda Motor Corporation, said, 'We will continue to offer customers exciting cars by honing internal combustion engines for the electrification era and expanding the multi-pathway possibilities for achieving carbon neutrality. Given the rotary engine's compatibility with electrification and carbon-neutral fuels, Mazda will continue to develop the technology through co-creation and competition to ensure it can contribute broadly to society.'

Tags: Toyota Subaru Mazda

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