Mazda isn’t the only company out there working on the next-generation rotary engine. According to China Car Times, Chery is also dabbling in Wankel technology. The company isn’t so much interested in bringing non-piston love to The People’s Republic so much as they are finding a more efficient way to charge the batteries in an extended-range EV. If CCT’s intelligence is accurate, the plan is to use an 800cc Wankel as a sort of internal-combustion lifeline so that if an electric car’s batteries go dead the driver won’t be walking home. The strategy is in line with what we’ve seen from the Chevrolet Volt.
Chery has already worked up a prototype or two using electron-powered QQ3 models. China Car Times says that the vehicles can drive up to 93 miles on battery power alone. Throwing in the new Wankel has extended the vehicle’s range by as much as an additional 43 miles. As of right now, there are no specifics as to whether or not Chery plans to bring the range-extended QQ3 to market.
Source: China Car Times