Japanese carmaker Mazda has announced plans to double production capacity at its engine plant in Hiroshima. Production volume will be increased from 400, 000 units to 800,000 units per year in October 2012.

The plant produces the new-generation SkyActiv-D clean diesel engine and SkyActiv-G, a highly efficient, new-generation direct-injection gasoline engine, Mazda said.

The engine is presently available in the Mazda Demio for the Japanese market, the Mazda Axela (known overseas as the Mazda3) for the North American and Australian market, and the Mazda CX-5, currently being launched in markets around the world. It will also be available in the next generation Mazda Atenza (known overseas as Mazda6) to be released later this year.

The Japanese automaker expects SkyActiv technology to account for 80 percent of Mazda’s total global sales goal of 1.7 million units in the fiscal year ending March 2016.

This comes after Mazda said it will end production of the rotary engine. While the rotary was lighter than many piston power plants, they weren’t more efficient because they typically used oil injection to lubricate seals and a greater proportion of fuel went unburned. That led both to bad gas mileage and higher emissions than many other cars.

Annual production peaked at 239,871 in 1973, the year of the Arab oil embargo.


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