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  • Diesels Return to Indy After 60 Years - AND WIN

Diesels Return to Indy After 60 Years - AND WIN

Mazda 6 SKYACTIV-D Clean Diesel wins at the Brickyard

Jul 26, 2013
Contributors: Agustin Jimenez
It’s been over 60 years since a diesel powered race car hit the track at Indy but this week, Mazda is bringing the heat to the Brickyard with their Mazda-6 SKYACTIV-D Clean Diesel Race Car. The last diesel to compete at Indy was the 1952 Cummins Diesel Special #28 Indycar and it shocked everyone and demonstrated how powerful a diesel engine could be by breaking lap time records right off the first lap of qualifying.
60 years later, Mazda is bringing diesels back to the Brickyard for this week’s Grand-Am race in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Mazda-6 Grand-Am GX cars are powered by a SKYACTIV-D Clean Diesel 2.2-liter inline-4 cylinder dual-turbo common rail, direct injected diesel engine that produces 400 horsepower at 5000 RPM as well as 445 pound feet of torque at 3600 RPM.
Photo 2/8   |   2014 Mazda 6 SKYACTIV D Clean Diesel Grand AM GX Engine
Although the Mazda-6 Grand-Am cars are far more technologically advanced than the 1952 Cummins Diesel Special race car, they both share the same vision of showing up to Indy with a diesel than can run circles around the competition while testing production technology in the harshest of environments.
While most people correctly associate racing with fast cars, it is far more complex than just raw speed. The best race cars have been modified for efficiency in every conceivable area. Decreasing weight, friction, and aero drag are key elements to performance. Less obvious to non-race fans is the fact that better fuel economy can mean the difference between winning and losing as fewer pit stops can often determine the winner in endurance races.
The all-new SKYACTIV-D Clean Diesel engine in the all-new Mazda-6 is a true production based engine. The engine is 51 percent stock by parts count, and 63 percent stock by weight. Mazda chose this path as it is the most honest way to demonstrate the quality, durability, and reliability of Mazda cars.
“This year has been one for the record books. In January, our SKYACTIV-D Clean Diesel Mazda6 became the first diesel racecar to ever compete at Daytona. In April, we became the first ever diesel to score a Grand-Am win at Road Atlanta. Now, we are about to bring clean diesel to one of the most famous proving grounds in the world, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Being students of motorsports heritage, it wasn’t lost on us that the last diesel to compete at Indy, a Cummins, made a strong impact in the 1950’s, hence our interest in looking at the state of the art from the past with our latest innovation,” noted John Doonan, Motorsports Director, Mazda North American Operations.
Post-Race Update:

One thing's for sure – the car was a rocket! After battling with Porsche for the lead, the Mazda6 took the lead with 47 laps remaining and never looked back, becoming the first diesel car to ever win at Indy. This was the fifth win in a row for the Mazda6, nudging Mazda ahead of Porsche in the GX manufacturers championship race with four rounds remaining. This was only the second year that sports cars have raced at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Doonan reflects on the milestone race win: “We made history today, both for Mazda and for SKYACTIV Clean Diesel Technology. While this is our fifth win of the season, and fifth in a row, it is by far the biggest win to date. To win at Indy is every racer’s dream, and that dream came true for Mazda here today. So many people at Mazda in the U.S. and Japan, working hand-in-hand with the amazing SpeedSource team, have never stopped making progress in this program. We also are grateful for our partners at Castrol, ModSpace and VISIT FLORIDA, all of whom have contributed to our success.”
Photo 3/8   |   Mazda6 Clean Diesel Wins At Indy
Photo 4/8   |   2014 Mazda 6 SKYACTIV D Clean Diesel Grand AM GX Green Car
Mazda-6 Grand-Am GX Specs:
Engine: Mazda SKYACTIV-D Clean Diesel
Configuration: Inline 4 Cylinder Turbo Diesel
Displacement: 2.2L (2191cc) Bore: 86.0 mm Stroke: 94.3 mm
Power: 400 horsepower at 5000 RPM – Grand-Am GX class target
Torque: 445 pound feet of torque at 3600 RPM
Fuel System: Common Rail, Direct Injection
Turbochargers: Series Turbocharged
Honeywell Turbo Technologies (Garrett) Turbochargers
-GTR3776R Low Pressure Stage
-GTR2560R High Pressure Stage
Transmission: EMCO 46P1 Transaxle
Clutch: Quarter Master
Suspension: Double A-Arm Front and Rear
Dampers: Dynamics DSSV
Brakes: Alcon
-Front: 355mm Disc, Monoblock 4-piston Caliper
-Rear: 328mm Disc, 4-piston Caliper
Wheels: BBS 1-piece Aluminum
Tires: Continental Racing Slicks (GRAND-AM Spec Tire)
Front: 285/645R18 Rear: 305/645R18
Weight: 1111 kg (2450 lb) -- GX class minimum
Weight Bias: 50:50
Dimensions: Length: 4935 mm (194.3 inches)
Height: 1298 mm (51.1 inches)
Width: 1880 mm (74.0 inches)

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