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  Mazda 6 Skyactiv-D GX      

  Article Image gallery (10) Specifications  
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Country of origin:Japan
Introduced in:2013
Introduced at:2012 Los Angeles International Auto Show
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:August 09, 2013
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Click here to download printer friendly versionAfter successfully fielding an RX-8 in the Grand-Am GT class for several seasons, Mazdaspeed introduced the Mazda 6 Skyactiv-D GX ahead of the 2013 season. Developed to comply with the regulations of the GX class for experimental machines, the 6 Skyactiv-D was set to break new ground and become the first ever diesel car to compete in the Grand-Am championship. The introduction of the new racer coincided with the launch of the all-new 2014 model year Mazda 6 road car.

Sourced directly from the road car's production line is the Skyactiv-D four cylinder engine, which although modified for competition use still uses over 60% stock components including the block and head. Displacing just under 2.2 litre, the diesel unit boasts direct injection and twin Garrett turbochargers. These are of different diameter to ensure the additional turbo boost is available for a much larger rev range. In compliance with the GX regulations, the production-based engine produces around 400 bhp and over 600 Nm of torque.

The engine is mounted in a bespoke tubular spaceframe chassis developed by Mazdaspeed partner SpeedSource. This is virtually identical as the chassis used for the early RX-8s and features all-round independent suspension. The engine's power and torque is transferred to the rear wheels through a six-speed sequential transaxle, supplied by EMCO. Fitted with carbon-fibre composite body closely resembling the road going Mazda 6, the competition car tips the scales at the class minimum of 1,111 kg with a perfect front/rear weight balance of 50:50.

SpeedSource has also been entrusted with running the pair of Mazda 6s. Unfortunately the only competition in the GX class comes from a lone Porsche Cayman fitted with a direct injection engine. After a difficult start of the 2013 season, the two Mazdas have scored five class wins to date. Among them was the first ever win for a diesel car at Indianapolis.

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  Article Image gallery (10) Specifications