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in the Japanese town of Hiroshima in of 1875, Jujiro Matsuda his career apprenticed to a blacksmith in at the age of 14. While working there, he a new kind of pump, called the pump”. Eventually Matsuda over operation of the foundry at he learned his craft and named the the “Matsuda Pump Partnership”.

went well for a while, but was eventually forced out of his company.

His venture was as an armament manufacturer in time for the First World

That one workedvery well.

By Matsuda was a wealthy man.

for his business expertise to help the Toyo Cork Kogyo Co. Matsuda refocused the company from manufacturing artificial and into producing machine This is generally agreed to be the of the company known today as although that name formally adopted until In 1931, the company did a motorized and called it the Mazdagomarking the first usage of the word “Mazda” on a vehicle.

This was developed into a truck, which the company until 1969.

The origins of the are attributed to a number of circumstances. say it’s because it sounds so to Matsuda, the company’s founder. It is attributed to the name of the Zoroastrian Ahura Mazdathe god of wisdom, and harmony.

With the onset of the World War, Matsuda again turned to producing for the Japanese military. Work on a car had begun before the war, but was when the war effort became Kogyo’s priority. After the those plans were off and Toyo Kogyo refocused its into the development and manufacturing of

The company’s first car was offered in and it was rather prolific in the development of cars and trucks throughout decade and moving forward. The Mazda model to come the States was the rotary-powered 1970 RX-2. In 1963, Mazda had experimenting with the rotary designed by Felix Wankel.

A relatively simple design, the rotary engine has but three moving parts and two valves.

The triangular-shaped rotor is mounted on a crankshaft and uses two sparkplugs to ignition. Fitted to a rounded rotor housing, three chambers are created between the and the inner walls of the rotor The rotor moves inside the when one of the two sparkplugs ignites the mixtures and rotates the rotor.

rotors can be added to increase well as turbocharging. A number of car tried to get the rotary engine to but Mazda was the only concern to put the engine into series

Thus, when the first cars came to the United in 1970, they were with rotary engines. exceptionally powerful for their reliable, and very easy to on, Mazda’s RX cars were prized by the cognoscenti. The company did a rotary-powered pickup truck and a powered station wagonthe applications of this powerplant to two platforms.

Further, the eclectic engine had the benefit of making the lightweight Mazda used it to power a lot of fun to

Things were going well for Mazda’s rotary-powered until the fuel crisis of the made motorists start miles per gallon. When did so they discovered the primary to the rotary engine. While in size, the rotaries were thirsty.

The resulting drop in nearly drove Mazda bankruptcy. However, Sumitomo stepped in with a fresh of capital and Mazda refocused its lineup around piston-engined and trucks.

Still though, the hadn’t completely abandoned the engine. Mazda’s product realized if the powerplant was fitted to a car, fuel economy matter so much and they’d something altogether unique in the The 1978 Mazda RX-7 was of this realization and went on to one of the best selling sports of all time.

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Configured with rear-wheel and the engine mounted behind the of the front wheels, the RX-7 was a lightweight mid-engine, rear sports car. Blessed exceptional handling, it went on to a major success in motorsports, a lot of attention to the Mazda brand. A Mazda prototype even won

Sales of the RX-7 ran through generations from 1978 to

But Mazda wasn’t done the rotary engine.

For the 2004 year, a new Wankel-engined Mazda car was offered in North Americathe A so-called two-door quad the RX-8 featured a pair of rear doors to aid access to its passenger compartment. Some this compromised the design Mazda’s claims of added

In any event, the RX-7 failed to on the way the RX-8 did and was discontinued after the model year.

With the RX-7 steadily up in price over its lifetime as the skewed more and more Grand Touring, a hole in the Mazda lineup for a small rear-drive roadster. Fitted a twin-cam four-cylinder engine, the Mazda MX-5 Miata the world by storm.

Virtually the small roadster category, the embraced everything driving loved about a small lightweight sports car, the vagaries of poor reliability the British sports cars MG and Triumph that had introduced the back in the 1950s and 1960s. The was such a hot-seller; some greedy dealers were them up as much as $10,000 MSRPand getting it! Automotive joked there were still upside down in on those first-generation Miatas 20 years later.

The Mazda Miata went on to easily the best-selling two-seat roadster of all

Sadly though, the Miata was the real bright spot in the lineup for much of that The company started having problems again, going the 21 st Century. Fortunately, Mazda had a partnership with Ford in By 1996, Ford was in control of a 33% in the company. This lasted 2010, when Ford all but three percent of its Mazda

However, that period of helped Mazda revamp its into today’s fuel-efficient, fun to well-crafted range of products.

with no rotary in sight


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