Published on October 3rd, 2016 | by Amirul Mukminin0
Mazda CX-5 Skyactiv-D – the Front-Runner of Clean Diesel Technology
It took the company awhile but Bermaz Motor, the official distributor of Mazda vehicles in Malaysia, finally opened its clean diesel chapter in the country with the launch of two Skyactiv-D vehicles – the 6 sedan and the CX-5 SUV – in July this year.
Not many manufacturers have the audacity to take the route often associated with loud engine noise and unpleasant scent but with the highly-acclaimed Skyactiv-D technology and the wider availability of the Euro 5 diesel particularly in the Klang Valley, Bermaz is confident that the customers are ready to discover a greener, better side of diesel vehicles a.k.a. “oil burners”.
Back to the vehicles, both the Mazda6 and CX-5 Skyactiv-D feature a 2.2-litre twin-turbo four-cylinder mill with 173 hp at 4,500 rpm and 420 Nm of torque from as low as 2,000 rpm, sent to the front axle through a six-speed automatic Skyactiv-Drive gearbox. So what makes Mazda’s clean diesel technology better than the rest?
First up, the engine generates ideal combustion by using a low compression ratio of 14:1, the lowest in the world for a diesel engine. This delays the combustion by half a millisecond, giving the air and fuel enough time to mix more thoroughly for a more complete combustion and reduced emissions.
While low compression would usually result in loss of efficiency, Mazda’s Skyactiv-D engine actually improves it thanks to optimized combustion timing that gives the engine a longer effective expansion stroke.
The engine is also fitted with ultra high-pressure piezo injectors which create a rich air/fuel mixture that is easier to ignite, making cold starts a breeze. A variable valve lift (VVL) system then recycles hot exhaust gasses back into the combustion chamber to quickly warm up the engine.
Not only that, VVL also enables high torque and response at low speeds and high power at high speeds, which is vital for a sizable SUV such as the CX-5. Reduced mechanical friction gives the vehicle 20% lower fuel consumption and a high redline at 5,200 rpm.
Unlike heavy, bulky diesel engines of the past, the Skyactiv-D’s low compression ratio means it doesn’t require the usual industrial grade parts. In fact, its weight is slashed by 10% through the use of lighter crank and pistons and aluminium block rather than cast iron.
This gives the CX-5 exceptional handling and a more balanced ride. Combined with its multi-link rear suspension, the CX-5 diesel packs a punch that will certainly surprise you.