Mazda’s SkyActiv-X Engine Is Still Coming To The U.S., But It May Be Awhile

The engine uses advanced "Spark-Controlled Compression Ignition" technology

The engine is not in the company’s immediate plans.

As the all-new Mazda3 continues to arrive at U.S. dealers, there’s one curious omission: the company’s SkyActiv-X engine.

Mazda aims to set itself apart from its ferocious competition by marketing the highly advanced engine. Though, there are a few hurdles in the way for the company as it closes in on bringing the 2.0-liter unit to market. Mazda North American Operations CEO Masahiro Moro said at the SAE International WCX Conference in Detroit, “SkyActiv-X is our road map going forward. We have a lot of technology. And we are introducing each technology in each region when the time is right.”

An Automotive News report points out one of the challenges to this high-compression engine’s commercial use is controlling carbon dioxide emissions.

SkyActiv-X Engine
Mazda SkyActiv-X prototype engine. [Photo: TFLcar]

When Mazda revealed the 2019 Mazda3 at the Los Angeles Auto Show, it did say the SkyActiv-X engine would eventually be available. As it stands, the only engine the car actually launched with in March was the carryover SkyActiv-G unit. In the Mazda3, it’s a 2.5-liter naturally-aspirated engine that makes 186 horsepower and 186 lb-ft of torque.

Expanding Mazda’s current engine lineup

At this point, Moro said Mazda would continue to focus on expanding SkyActiv-G. “Customers are looking for good power from a sophisticated and reliable engine. Right now, we are expanding SkyActiv-G,” he said. To that end, Mazda will likely update its smaller 2.0-liter SkyActiv-G engine for models like the upcoming CX-30. The company also launched its SkyActiv-D turbodiesel engine in the U.S. with the CX-5 crossover. However, there was no indication of when SkyActiv-X would ultimately arrive.

Considering the resources Mazda poured into developing this engine, we know this engine will eventually make it to the U.S. However, we also hope it won’t be too late for this generation. After all, U.S. customers had to wait years for the company’s diesel to arrive. Moro did say the engine can pass EPA emissions regulations, but nevertheless it is not in the Mazda’s immediate future plans.