Mazda has announced plans to launch its new Sky Concept powertrains in the U.S. beginning in 2011. The Sky technologies will help the brand meet its goal of reducing fuel consumption by 30 percent by 2015. The Sky technologies include a Sky-G engine, a Sky-Drive transmission and a Sky-D engine.

Beginning in 2011, the Sky-G – the G stands for gasoline – will be introduced in the U.S. According to Mazda, this engine will be the basis for all future Mazda offerings. The Sky-G is said to increase efficiency by 15 percent while also boosting power. Sky-G will be mated to the Sky-Drive automatic transmission (pictured at right). Sky-Drive will further increase fuel efficiency by five percent while offering the feel of a typical dual-clutch transmission setup. Like the Sky-G, Sky-Drive will debut in 2011.

One year later, the Sky-D will roll out. The Sky-D – you guessed it, a diesel-powered engine – will also be mated to the Sky-Drive transmission. Mazda believes that this setup will achieve an impressive highway fuel economy rating of 43 miles per gallon in the company's next-generation mid-sized diesel car. Mazda will introduce the diesel engine to the states in 2012 and the engine will meet the stringent Tier 2 BIN 5 regulations without needed any urea after-treatment. Follow the jump for the entire press release.

[Source: Mazda]


PRESS RELEASE

SKY-G* and SKY-Drive* to launch in U.S. in 2011; SKY-D* and SKY-Drive in 2012

NEW YORK - At its press conference at the New York International Auto Show, Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) today announced it plans to launch its all-new SKY Concept* powertrains into the U.S. market, beginning as early as 2011.

"By launching our SKY technologies into the global market place, beginning in 2011, we will take a huge step toward accomplishing our stated goal of achieving a 30-percent improvement in global fuel economy by 2015," said Takashi Yamanouchi, representative director, president and CEO, Mazda Motor Corporation.

The first of the two engines to be initially introduced in the U.S. in 2011 - the Mazda SKY-G - is Mazda's next-generation gasoline engine and will be the core powertrain in future Mazda vehicles. SKY-G is expected to boost fuel efficiency by approximately 15 percent while also increasing engine power.

Yamanouchi also announced that Mazda intends to carry out the global launch of the SKY-G engine mated to the SKY-Drive transmission in the U.S. market in 2011. Following the U.S. launch, Mazda then intends to roll out this all-new powertrain to global markets. The new automatic SKY-Drive transmission is expected to improve fuel economy by an additional five percent, while achieving a direct-performance feel like that of a dual-clutch transmission.

As a follow-up to SKY-G and SKY-Drive, Yamanouchi added, "We plan to launch the SKY-D engine mated to Sky-Drive in the U.S. in 2012." Mazda plans to incorporate the extremely fuel-efficient SKY-D engine into its next-generation mid-sized diesel car, allowing highway fuel economy of up to 43 miles per gallon - which is better than today's mid-sized hybrids - and a 20-percent improvement in fuel efficiency over Mazda's current 2.2-liter diesel. When launched in the U.S., SKY-D will meet Tier 2 BIN 5 regulations, one of the toughest emissions standards in the world. Because of Mazda's proprietary catalyst technology, SKY-D does not require urea after-treatment to meet the strict North American emissions standards.

"By optimizing our existing technologies - engines, transmissions, weight reduction and aerodynamics - we aim to benefit all our customers and minimize the cost of ownership," said Yamanouchi. "The phased introduction of these new technologies will form the building blocks of Mazda's future."

*These are concept names given to engines and transmissions scheduled for introduction from 2011 onward, and not the names of the actual products.

Celebrating its 40th Anniversary in the United States in 2010, Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif. and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States, Canada and Mexico through nearly 900 dealers. Operations in Canada are managed by Mazda Canada, Inc., located in Ontario; and in Mexico by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.