New Zealand drifter "Mad Mike" Whiddett will take on the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (the event's 100th running) this June with an insane rotary-powered Mazda 3 hatchback.
As detailed in an Instagram post (first spotted by The Drive), the Pikes Peak Mazda 3 will have four rotors, four doors (not counting the rear hatch) and four seats. Whiddett also mentioned an output of 1,200 hp, but didn't divulge any other technical details. It's also unclear what class Whiddett will run in or what records he might attempt to break.
A rendering (pictured above) shows quad exhaust tips exiting the hood and a massive rear wing. That, along with a generously sized front splitter and rear diffuser, should help maximize downforce in the thin atmosphere on Pikes Peak, where racers start at 9,300 feet above sea level and climb to the 14,115-foot summit.
As we've seen with other recent Pikes Peak specials like the Volkswagen ID.R and Bentley Continental GT3 Pikes Peak, oversized aero devices can help compensate for the less-dense Colorado air at those altitudes, which would otherwise produce less downforce.
The racer is certainly wilder than any car Mazda has done itself. The automaker has no plans for new MazdaSpeed models, and canceled a racing version as well. The sportiest version of the Mazda 3 road car is the 250-hp 2.5 Turbo model, which offers decent performance for an everyday hatch.
Recent patent filings hint at some interesting possibilities, including a Mazda 3 2-door hatchback and a rear-wheel drive sports car with a rotary-hybrid powertrain. But there's no guarantee that either will go into production.