Mazda managed to break 20 speed records with its diesel-powered Mazda6.
The company set these 20 records, which are still subject to FIA homologation, at the ATP test oval in Papenburg, Germany.
Three Mazda6 SKYACTIV-D 2.2-liter clean diesels completed a 24-hour marathon run on the high-speed track this last weekend, with the front car achieving an average speed of 137.37 mph and the other two close behind. The current record for diesel-powered production cars (2.0-2.5 liter displacement) is 130.38 mph.
In total, the cars covered over 3293.3 miles during the 24-hour period.
Mazda added each of the three Mazdas also set several other average speed records over a variety of distances (also subject to FIA homologation).
At the wheel of the cars were 23 drivers from seven EU countries. Mazda explained they included professionals as well as journalists and car enthusiasts, who could apply to take part as part of a campaign started by Mazda last May. During their 1.5-hour stints behind the wheel, they were not allowed to follow in the slipstream of a preceding car and needed to be exceptionally careful in the steeply banked curves at each end of the oval to avoid losing speed.
Mazda said only 0.55mph of average speed separated the three Mazda6 cars after 24 hours – a tribute to the drivers and pit teams, which were made up of employees from various Mazda dealerships, but above all to the design, drivability and dependability of these cars even when pushed to their limits.
Mazda’s SKYACTIV-D clean diesels feature a 14:1 compression ratio, the world’s lowest in a diesel engine. This engine is available in various parts of the world in the Mazda CX-5, Mazda6, all-new Mazda3 and coming soon in the all-new Mazda2, but not yet available in the U.S.
Mazda added demand for these clean diesel engines has been strong around the globe from day one and has not let up since. They have been successful on the track elsewhere, too: in mid-2013, a SKYACTIV-D powered Mazda6 became the first diesel to ever win a race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.