The Mazda RX-8 is a sports car manufactured by the Mazda Motor Corporation. It first appeared in 2001 at the North American International Auto Show. It is the successor to the RX-7 and like its predecessors in the RX range it is powered by a Wankel rotary engine.
See Wikicars' comprehensive Mazda RX-8 Review.
- 1 Recent Changes
- 2 Styles and Major Options
- 3 Pricing
- 4 Gas Mileage
- 5 Reliability
- 6 Safety
- 7 Photos
- 8 Colors
- 9 Main Competitors
- 10 Hybrid Models
- 11 Unique Attributes
- 12 Resale Values
- 13 Criticisms
- 14 Current Generation: (2004–present)
- 15 Worldwide
- 16 Design quirks and oddities
- 17 Awards
- 18 See also
- 19 External Links
- 20 Online Forums
- For 2009, the RX-8 recieves an extensive mid-cycle facelift. The overhaul entails a new front and rear fascia, revised head and taillights, upgraded cabin materials, a bevy of new standard equipment and a new suspension set-up. Although the engine remains relatively unchanged, performance has been boosted in the optional R3 Sports Package to either 232 hp or 212 hp guise. The former is complemeted by a six-speed manual along with a sport-tuned suspension, 19 inch alloy wheels, Recaro sports seats, a 300-watt Bose audio system with surround sound and noise compensation, Bluetooth and keyless entry and start. In the latter, however, power transmission is handled by a semi-automatic six-speed with paddle shift. 
- The 2007 RX-8 remains largely unchanged from the previous model year, with the exception of two new exterior colors and the minor addition of certain standard interior features previously offered only as options.
- To celebrate the Mazda Rotary engine's 40th Anniversary, on August 2007, Mazda launched the extremely limited edition RX-8 Rotary Engine 40th Anniversary. It is available exclusively in Marble White body color while the interior is covered in black leather and light silver Alcantara.
Styles and Major Options
In North America, the 2007 Mazda RX-8 comes in three trims: the Sport, Touring, and Grand Touring. All three are equipped with the same standard 1.3L 232hp rotary engine, 6-speed manual transmission, rear wheel drive, and sport suspension. Main differences between the trims consist of options upgrades. Some of the standout features include:
- Tochigi Fuji limited slip differential
- 18" silver alloy wheels
- Cloth seating and door trim
- Leather steering wheel and leather/aluminum shift knob
- Manual front air conditioning
- 6-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system
- Cruise control
Adds to or replaces Sport features with:
- Driveline traction control
- Electronic stability control
- Express open sunroof
- Auto-dimming day/night headlights
- 9-speaker Bose AM/FM/6CD-changer audio system w/amplifier
- HomeLink Wireless Control System
RX-8 Grand Touring
Adds to or replaces Touring features with:
- 8-way power driver's seat
- Heated front bucket seats
- Leather seating trim and leatherette door trim
- Heated remote side mirrors
As seen on the FuelEconomy.gov website, the City/Highway MPG averages are as follows:
According to Automotive Information Systems, the RX-8 has exhibited good long-term reliability. the 2004 model received an overall Green rating in every category. Those who follow the intstruction manual and observe the proper break in period should have minimum problems. Reports of odd floodings and higher than normal oil consumption has been noted, along with catalytic converter failure due to cold start carbon build up on early models. Mazda has fixed the problem in late 2004, and is repairing free of charge older, defective RX-8's.
A large number of RX-8 owners report engine failure and poor response from Mazda.
In safety tests carried out by the NHTSA, the RX-8 performed well. Side-impact and driver's side front-impact crash tests yielded 4-Star ratings, while tests for rollover and passenger side front-impact earned the RX-8 5-Star marks. Some of the standard safety features on the RX-8 include:
- Front and rear anti-roll bars
- 4 wheel anti-lock brakes
- Driver/Passenger front-impact airbags
- Driver/Passenger seat-mounted side-impact airbags
- 1st/2nd row overhead airbags
- Occupancy sensors
- Side-impact bars
The 2008 Mazda RX-8 "Rotary Engine 40th Anniversary edition"
Available color combinations will vary by trim, and a full list is viewable at CarsDirect.com. Some of the available combinations are:
- Brilliant Black Clearcoat
- Crystal White Pearl
- Galaxy Gray Mica
- Sunlight Silver Metallic
- Velocity Red Mica
- Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
- Honda S2000
- Ford Mustang
- Nissan 350Z
- Pontiac GTO
- Chevrolet Corvette
- Subaru Impreza WRX STI
- Mazda has been developing it's flex-fuel Hydrogen RE project based off of its Mazda RX-8 vehicle. As of March of 2007, it is in it's 7th generation.
The car features a pair of rear-hinged Clam Shell Doors, termed Freestyle Doors by Mazda, to provide easier access to the rear seats. The RX-8 has no B-pillar between the front and rear doors, with the leading edge of the rear door acting as a 'virtual pillar' to maintain structural rigidity. Because of the overlapped design, the rear doors can only be opened when the front doors are open.
According to Kelley Blue Book, "as sports cars go, the RX-8 holds an excellent resale value, just below the BMW 3 Series and Infiniti G35 Coupe, but much better than the Chrysler Crossfire, Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS and Mitsubishi Eclipse."
- "I wasn't too impressed by the RX-8's styling, inside or out. Exterior styling has a lot of odd bulges here and there, including a couple on the roof." - MSN Autos
- "The RX-8's rotary engine, with its occasional fuel consumption issues and short-at-the-bottom torque curve, may not be to your liking. The compact rotary engine delivers its torque high in the rpm band, meaning you have to run the revs high when passing or accelerating." - Kelley Blue Book
Current Generation: (2004–present)
The RX-8 was designed as a front mid-mounted, rear-wheel drive 2+2 coupé. The car has a 50/50 weight distribution, achieved by mounting the engine behind the front axle. Weight is trimmed through the use of materials such as aluminium and plastic for the body panels and a carbon composite for the driveshaft.
The RX-8 is powered by a 1.3 L naturally-aspirated RENESIS rotary engine, which features newly designed side intake and exhaust ports. The engine is smaller and lighter than previous rotaries, primarily due to the lack of a turbocharger and associated parts.
The engine is designed in various configurations for different models, but in its most powerful setup develops 250 PS (247 hp, 184 kW) at 8,500 rpm with a redline at 9,000 rpm and fuel cut-off at 9,500 rpm. It won the International Engine of the Year and Best New Engine awards in 2003 and holds the "2.5 to 3 liter" size award for 2003 and 2004.
Mazda introduced a special Shinka edition to the U.S. market in 2005, and to the UK market in 2006 where it was branded as the Evolve. New features included Shinka badges on the B-pillar, new paint colours (Black Cherry Mica, Copper Red and Phantom Blue), re-styled mirrors, alcantara-trimmed leather seats, updated component materials, and enhanced chassis and suspension tuning. Power output remained unchanged from the standard models.
At the 2004 North American International Auto Show, Mazda unveiled the RX-8 Hydrogen RE concept car, designed to run on either hydrogen or gasoline. In February 2006, Mazda revealed that it would start leasing a dual-fuel RX-8 to commercial customers in Japan, and in March 2006 announced its first two customers, claiming the first fleet deliveries of a dual hydrogen/gasoline production car.
The Senku is a prototype of the next rotary powered Mazda vehicle. Designed as a practical sports car for adults, it has a 2-piece hatchback, a single large sliding door on both sides, and a highly advanced direct-injected rotary engine with electric hybrid technology.
UK (May 2006)
On the Road
|192 ps (141 kW), 5-Speed||£21,400||15E / G||267|
|231 ps (170 kW), 6-Speed||£22,900||16E / G||284|
Design quirks and oddities
- The car is used in the Formula Woman racing series which started in 2004. A slightly modified RX-8 was also featured in the 2003 film X2: X-Men United.
- The RX-8 is the work of noted Japanese designer Tsutomu Matano.
- The car is also used in the video game Need for Speed: Carbon for $25,000 ( when Nikki is hired, the car will lower its price to $ 22,000 ) as a tuner car.
The RX-8 has won numerous awards including Wheels magazine's Car of the Year for 2003. In 2004 it was nominated for the North American Car of the Year award. It was also named on Car and Driver magazine's Ten Best list for 2004, 2005, and 2006.
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Concept: Ryuga · Nagare · Kabura · Senku · Kusabi · Ibuki · Hakaze · Cosmo 21 · Taiki · Motonari RX Concept · 2018 Mazda3 Concept · Furai Concept · Atenza MAZDASPEED Concept · Kazamai Concept · Kiyora City Car Concept · KAAN Concept · MX-5 Miata Superlight Concept · RX-500 Concept · Shinari Concept · MX-0 Concept · Mazda2 Evil Track Concept · Mazda2 Street Concept · MX-5 Super20 Concept · Mazda3 Redline Time Attack Concept · Mazda3 Turbo Sedan Concept · RX-8 Grand-Am GT Concept · MX-5 Cup Car Concept ·
|Jujiro Matsuda||Corporate website||A brand of the Ford Motor Company|
- Mazda RX-8 Official Site
- Mazda RX-8 "Rotary Engine 40th Anniversary edition" Introduced In Japan
- Mazda RX-8 "Sport Pack"
- Revealed: 2009 Mazda RX-8 facelift
- Detroit Show: 2009 Mazda RX-8 Facelift High-Res Images & Details