A Variable Resonance Induction System (VRIS) was used on the K8, KF, and KL, optimizing torque production over the entire rev band. The K8, KF, and KL engines all had a 7,000 rpm redline. The KJ-ZEM Miller cycle engine had a 6,000 rpm redline, but was only available mated with an automatic transmission.
The Mazda K series was co-developed with Suzuki, with Mazda reportedly handling the bulk of the design. The early 2.0 L Suzuki H20A and Mazda KF are similar in design, but the two engine families diverged after this. Suzuki focused on building ever-larger torque-producing engines for their SUV lineup, while Mazda focused on high technology and power output. The later Suzuki and Mazda engines do not share many components at all.
The 1.8 L (1845 cc) K8 is among the smallest production V6 engines ever; and also the first K-series engine to be used in a Mazda car. (in the Mazda MX-3 It was a DOHC 4-valve design with VRIS and a 75 mm bore and 69.6 mm stroke. It produced 130 hp in US trim (sometimes referred to as "K8-DE"), and 135 hp in Japanese trim (the "K8-ZE") on introduction in 1991 and 144 hp (108 kW) and 115 ft.lbf (157 Nm) at its best.
- Mazda MX-3
- Eunos 500
- Autozam AZ3
- 2.0 L KF - 1995 cc (78x69.6 mm) - The 2.0 L KF-ZE engine produced 160 hp (119 kW) and 132 ft.lbf (180 Nm). The Lantis variant produced 170 hp and 140 ft·lbf.
- 1992-1993 Eunos 500, 160 hp 180 Nm
- 1993-2002 Eunos 800
- 1993-1999 Xedos 6
- 1993-2002 Xedos 9
- 1993-1996 Mazda Lantis
The 2.3 L KJ-ZEM is one of Mazda's most technologically advanced engines. It employs the "Miller cycle" which uses a supercharger to decrease compression losses and increase power. It was used in the T-platform cars. The supercharger used is the twin-screw type with electronic boost control. Power output was 217 hp (162 kW) and 210 ft.lbf. The KJ-ZEM was on the Ward's 10 Best Engines list for 1995 through 1998.
- Mazda Millenia
- Eunos 800
- Mazda Xedos 9
The 2.5 L (2497 cc) KL family uses an 84.5 mm bore and 74.2 mm stroke. It includes the Japan-only KL-ZE, which produced 196 hp (149 kW) and 165 ft.lbf (224 Nm). Another variant, the KL-DE (often incorrectly called the KL03) was the worldwide version, with 164-170 hp in various applications.
Mazda introduced a key technology with these engines, known as the Variable Resonance Induction System (VRIS). A series of two butterfly valves coupled with electronically controlled actuators varied the volume and length of a resonant chamber attached to the intake manifold, producing 4 resonant frequencies. The valves actuate at particular engine frequencies (i.e. RPMs) to produce optimal torque/horsepower output at any given engine speed.
- 1993-1997 Mazda MX-6 LS
- 1993-1997 Ford Probe GT
- 1993-2002 Mazda 626 ES
- 1995-2002 Mazda Millenia L
- 1997 Mazda Capella Wagon
- 1993+ Mazda MX-6 Mystere (Japan)
- 1993+ Mazda MS-8 (Japan)
- 1993+ Mazda Eunos 600/800 (Japan)