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Mazda RX-8

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  • Really? Try this link. It explains the problem and the fix for it. It's a service bulletin.

    http://www.finishlineperformance.com/rx8/docs/pdf/01-009-05-1450.pdf
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    Was at the DC car show over the weekend and the only 8 they had was a Shinka. It was a lighter color than the black cherry (more just burgundy or maroon) and they had it tagged as a 2007. It was a hot display with a line of people a mile long waiting to get in it.

    Saw nothing at the car show that tempted me. Now, of course, we'd all have something truly obnoxious if we had unlimited amounts of money (a Bentley or something). But, when it comes down to looks, pricing, performance, and practicality - nothing there beat my Rex. Almost a year now and I still love it!!
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "Was at the DC car show over the weekend and the only 8 they had was a Shinka. It was a lighter color than the black cherry (more just burgundy or maroon) and they had it tagged as a 2007."

    Interesting.

    I've heard rumors of an anticipated Copper Red color for the '06 cars (and possibly that it would be available only for the Shinka Edition).

    Is it possible that the car you saw was a Copper Red RX-8?
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    The following cars interested me greatly:
    - The VW 3 wheel roadster. *blink* Wow. They threw AWAY the box in the design department. Going to be made, evidently, and under $20K.
    - The Volvo concept. 2+1 seems a no-brainer for small cars, especially hybrids and sportscars(350Z comes to mind - no real reason it doesnt have a trunk or a back seat)
    - The Lotus Elise. Sexy looking. Fast. Maybe someday affordable, even.
    - The Toyota FJ(though it was ruled out due to being too flimsy to survive real 4*4ing, even if it was armored a lot aftermarket)
    - The Honda Fit(though it wasn't there the day I was)
    - The RX-8. Same car - essentially unchanged, other than the automatic.
    - The Ford GT-40. Wow.
    - And my one drool at it car. The Saleen.

    There are lots of interesting cars at auto shows. :)
  • The G-35 coup and sedan are both very nice cars and fun to drive with the manual transmission.The nissan v6 engine is one of the very best.The clutch and the shifter are a bit heavy and tight.The low rpm horsepower feels exhilarating on the street.Its a quality auto and easy to maintain.The RX8 is unique--its rotary engine is the most powerful for its size.Its power comes at hi rpm--which makes it a pussycat and a tiger.Drive it normally with its easy clutch and smooth shifting gearbox and grandma would enjoy it. Bring up the rpm to 6500 and use its gears and it becomes an exhilarating driving experience.Both cars are very capable--but the rx8 puts a bigger smile on your face.
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    Bingo on the color rorr... some pics of it are posted on the forum which is the name of this car....club.com (since we get our hands smacked for mentioning such things). It was the copper red. Didn't do much for me, I prefer the black cherry for the shinka. But, not bad.
  • I think that I'm ready for my very own RX-8. My dilemma is, buy now or wait. Currently I can get an AT loaded for around $4500 under sticker with rebate. When the 2006's arrive, I doubt if there will be incentives like this. Is the 6 sp AT and 15HP worth a few months and a few grand? This is my dilemma. Any suggestions?
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    I am so totally waiting for the 2006 RX-8 AT 6 speed to hit the show room. When those 2006s hit in March, watch the 2005 AT drop like a stone. I'm trying to get my wife into one of those last 2005 ATs. I think a Grand Touring 2005 RX-8 AT could go for $22K.

    Am I right or wrong? I am on the prowl though. Watching inventories.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,673
    Is the 6 sp AT and 15HP worth a few months and a few grand?

    In my opinion? Absolutely. I think adding 2 gears could help a TREMENDOUS amount in acceleration and gas mileage. Not to mention the fun of having 2 more gears to access with the paddles.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Hang-on there. The 4 sp AT already has overdrive on 3rd and 4th gear. The gas millage number for the highway 25MPG is not going to change. The gas millage for the city might be better, but I doubt seriously whether those two gears will do much more than improve the full power acceleration.

    Now as for the fun of paddle shifting to maximize the power of the engine at all times then absolutely yes, 6 speed is way better than 4 speed. Unfortunately here in Boston, you can never drive an RX-8 even close to full power. So gimmee a 4 speed AT for a $7000 discount any day.
  • Bought a 2005 RX-8 Shinka two weeks ago (gave up waiting for the 2006), and immediately outfitted it with winter tires.

    I found a great tire shop in Chicago (Nortown Automotive), and got this advice from the manager at the store:

    1) You don't really need to buy a 2nd set of wheels for your snow tires. If you go to a tire shop that has quality mounting equipment and good mechanics, mounting and unmounting summer and winter tires will not hurt them.

    2) On a performance car, avoid all-seasons. Get some proper winter ties.

    3) Avoid Avons. They are not in the same quality class as Bridgstones and Dunlops.

    I put Dunlop Winter Sport M3's on my car. If we ever get snow this winter, I'll post a review. :)

    On dry and wet roads, they seem fine--though, of course, 'softer' than the stock Potenza summer tires.

    saxon
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    It's basically the chemistry of the rubber compounds and tire design. Summer performance tire rubber is harder. Winter tires are soft. Summer performance maximize the surface of the tire that actually in contact with the road surface. Winter tire design maximizes grip by digging into snow and ice.

    All seasons, like the Avons, give up 10% performance on either end for better tread wear (360) and better economy (gas mileage actual 25 MPG highway and tire cost $139ea).

    I'll sell my stock Potenza summer tires (4K miles on them) for $100ea. Split the shipping. My e-mail is trispec@goppie.com.
  • I owned an '83 with the 12A engine and loved it. It's been a long time, but I am interested in the RX8. I love the idea of room for 4 even if it's just short trips. On Sunday I drove to the loacl dealer to go for a test drive. I'm lookng at pre-owned as my budget is 22k plus tax. Unfortunately, I have to look at autos because of left knee problems which cause my knee to freeze occasionally with the opertaion movement of a clutch. But I desperately want some driver input, so I'm only interested with automatics that allow the driver some shift inout. I've narrowed my search to the RX8 and Mini CooperS auto. I have the worst luck. I went to the local Mazda dealer to go for a test drive. He had 2 autos. BUT, believe it or not, they couldn't get to the keys because the keys were in the "detail" dept and they're closed Sundays so no one could get the keys! They did have one of the keyless entries for one car so I got to sit in it and check out the trunk and all.

    I have one question about the seats. These were electric. Is there a way to manually flip the seat forward? The salesman said no. You have to use the switch to s l o w l y tilt it forward to get in the back. This makes no sense but I couldn't find a release.

    Does anyone have an auto? I'd love to hear form you about your opinions. I hope to go for a test drive in the next few weeks.

    Ron B.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    The passenger side flips forward some, but the drivers side is what you get. OTOH, unless you are too large to fit in the rear seats, the half-door should easily swing open more than enough.

    Edit:
    In a word, the RX-8 blows the doors off the Cooper S. It's a coupe-looking sports sedan. Based upon looks alone, most auto magazines unfairly match it in tests with a 350Z. The RX-8 does 85-90% as well, desipite not even being made to be a real sportscar.

    Revs instantly, has gobs of power - imagine a Ninja 500 or simmilar with four wheels and A/C. Drive it like a sportsbike and it's awesome. (ie - don't drive it like a normal car as the power band is in the 5000 rpm+ range.)
  • A Grand Touring AT for $22K? That's $10 under sticker. Do you really think that this will ever be the case? Someone mentioned $7K under sticker, that would be sweet as well. Do you think that they would ever drop even that much?
  • The new Shinka is supposed to become available in late April, so potentially that is why it is listed as an 07 right now. It comes in Copper Red, snowflake, black, and (I think) Galaxy Gray. You can only get Copper Red in a Shinka.

    For whoever liked the Lotus Elise, very uncomfortable ride. They have no concept of cushioning on the seats. It's like sitting on a folding chair!!! I don't think anyone would want one that had to do much driving.
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Well in the Mazda inventory search at several dealers, the Grand Touring RX-8 AT MSRP lists at $29K. Obviously a $7K discount is optimistic, but as the opening bid in a negotiations, it seems a fairly reasonable place to start.

    But there are stories about really big price drops on 2004 models last year when the 2005 models actually arrived. Dealers have lots of incentives to move out the older stock.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,673
    The gas millage number for the highway 25MPG is not going to change.

    well, we'll see how it all translates into real-world mixed-driving mileage. Could be significant (or might not change, like you said). Its going to depend alot, of course, on driving habits, conditions, etc. In any case, the 6-speed should have POTENTIAL for improved mileage.

    So gimmee a 4 speed AT for a $7000 discount any day.

    the original poster said a few grand. At $7k, i'd also have to give it serious thought. Then again, even at those savings, you couldn't get me to buy a 4-speed AT. It would absolutely have to be the stick.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • I picked up my blue '05 RX8 a few weeks ago for just about 7k under sticker. It has the 1GT package and the spare tire. This is in the DC Metro area. Some of the dealers are offering discounts on some weekends, but not all of them.

    what a sweet car this is!
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Having rationalized the purchase of an RX-8 AT 4 speed for such a long time now, it's a mental game to even think about 6 speeds AT or MT. The main question would seem to be did the ratios of 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th get within 1000 RPM of each other. Right now 1st, 2nd and 3rd plus over drive are about 1200 RPM apart. 4th with it's over drive seems to equal 5th and 6th on the six speeds.

    Right now 1st will go to 50MPH, 2nd to 70MPH, 3rd to 110MPH and 4th goes to 140MPH (never been there though). It'd be nice to see the numbers for the 6 speeds.
  • $7K under sticker would be almost impossible for me to turn down. I'm looking for black with the GT package.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    The Base model with automatic shoudl be close to $20K, then.

    I thought it over and I think a 4-speed would be just fine, actually. The 4-speed I test drove a few months ago was lightning fast in and out of traffic, so I wonder other than having two tall overdrive gears, exactly how much improvement a 6 speed will have.

    My guess is they'll move 1st gear to 30mph, 2nd to 50, 3rd to 80, and so on, which would mean shifting in city traffic and to pass on the highway a lot. Gas mileage aside, being able to downshift and whomp on it in 3rd gear all the way up to as fast as you need - that's slick.
  • Does anyone know what the dealer holdback is on the RX-8?
  • I went for my test drive of the automatic RX8 tonight. I was really looking forward to it and brought my 12 yr old so I could see how much room he'd have for those times he had to ride in the back. Unfortunately, I left rather underwhelmed. I've narrowed my search to the RX8 and Cooper S, both with autos, but I hadn't driven either. The RX8 was the first of the two I've taken for a test drive.

    First, having nothing to do with the car, the salesman knew NOTHING about the car. I asked him if the increased output in the '06 was due to changes to the engine or a result of the new hp measurements. His response, "they changed how the engine puts the power down to the rear". What the HECK does that mean? Of course, when we first met, he greeted me with a, "Sup?"

    I was happy to feel the pep the car had with 3 full sized people in the car (my son is 5'11") and the a/c on. My old 12A RX7 was decidedly slow with 2 people and a/c on. The suspension felt nice and taut and the steering weighting felt good. I didn't find the brakes grabby at all despite posts I've read on that. I was surprised by the lack of headroom for me even with the seat lowered all the way down and I'm only 5'11". It was tight. The car had a sunroof so I'm sure that takes room away, but I didn't think it should be that tight. The transmisison is what really left me disappointed. That was my fear. I can't drive manual due to my knee and I was hoping this new generation of autos with some driver input would be a good development.

    Here's what I experienced and my question to auto owners out there: What I expected from the tranny was actually very little. All I expected was that it would respond to MY inputs without question unless doing so would harm the engine, like if I asked it to downshift if it would cause overrevving. Once fully warmed, I drove at 40 mph. I was in 4th and changed to 3rd and then 2nd. It was fine. I then went back up to 4th. Fine again. Then, while still at 40 mph in 4th, I quickly shifted 2nd. The car said NO! The digital display quickly showed 3rd and then 2nd, but the transmission stayed in 3rd and the display went from 2nd to 3rd. I shifted to 4th and tried again. Nope. Did it a third time and this time it DID go to 2nd. Tried it again and it stayed in 3rd. I turned to the salesman and asked what was going on. He said he didn't know. He watched the dash display go down to 2nd but then go back to 3rd since the tranny only shifted down to 3rd. Now, I never pressed on the accelerator at all. I kept the pedal in the same spot doing 40 mph. Is this normal? It shifted fine if I went down with 2nd with maybe 2 seconds between shifts, but if I asked for a quick pop down to 2nd, it refused 3 out of 4 times? I only test drove this one car so maybe it's peculiar to this one? Perhaps a software glitch? I was just really ticked because I like the car (as much as you can before driving it)and my only concern was the auto trans. I was so disgusted that it wouldn't do what it was asked to, we just drove back to the dealership and I left. Maybe overreacting a bit, but I'm really disappointed. For a car that lists at almost 30k and claims to be so sporty, I'm very surprised. Once I drive the Cooper, I'll have to drive the RX8 one more time.

    So, auto owners, can you duplicate my issue? I'm hoping that it was just a weird thing to this car and not a common "problem".

    Thanks for any reply,

    Ron Brooks
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    Sorry to hear. The car drove fine for me, and I did a 3rd to 1st shift accidently(overshot 2nd) and it happily revved to 6000rpm at 30mph.

    Were you using the shifter or the paddles on the wheel? I find that the shifter itself is spot-on. As for driving, 40mph in 4th with the older transmission is definately lugging the engine. I left it in 2nd for most of my test-drive, with one quick burst into 3rd at 60mph on a straight road.

    The 6 speed definately should do better. Give it another try in a few weeks.
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Yep, my 4 speed auto manages all aspects of the shifting. Keep in mind, a computer is actually doing the shifting, not the human. The human provides input via the paddles, but there's other data that the computer considers, which may, over ride the human input. I made the error of shifting the AT to park while moving once and the computer said NO, you don't want to do that.

    There's is an sensor that detects momentum forces and traction control potential, even at low speeds, which does over ride my choice of which gear to shift to. Even if you try to turn off DSC, the computer will still watch and interrupt your selections.

    When Jet pilots went through the transition of flying hydrolic to fully electronic controls (they call it steam driven verses glass) there were years of aguments as some pilots complained they were being cut out of the direct control. They even said a computer was being placed between them and life threatening critical situations.

    Today, however, pilots, military and civilian, pretty much agree, the computers make the act of flying thousands of times safer. It's also easier and more comfortable. New steam driven jets haven't been made for years now.
  • mdw1000mdw1000 Posts: 171
    I've just started to research this car as I'm looking for a 4-door car with great handling. My wife has an 05 Acura TL and I love the handling of that car and its V6. I was searching around for a car with the same routine handling rating as the TL on consumer reports website and came across the RX-8.

    Questions...

    1. How is this car in the snow? I will be using this as my primary car and live in the Chicago area.

    2. Can you get it with all-season tires?

    3. Does it have traction and stability control?

    4. What do I need to know about the rotary engine? I really don't know anything about them...

    Thanks!
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Hi

    1) & 2) My RX-8 AT is fine now with Avon Tech all-seasons replacing the summer stock tires. The summer stocks have better traction in warm dry conditions, but in snow, slush and ice, the stock tires are horrible. Some RX-8 folks are however equally horrified with all season tires on such a performance car, but the Avon Techs give 90% of the performance and 90% of the snow tire traction, but with 40% cost savings $139ea. vs 200ea. and tread wear of 360 vs 140 for the summer stock tires.

    In Boston's latest big storm I was trapped in traffic for two hours with 6" inches of snow dropping so fast that my wipers jammed solid four times. But the Avon Techs took me through packed and unpacked snow, heavy slush and ice sheets without any problems.

    3) As for the the Dynamic Stability Control/Traction control, I did need to turn off the DSC/TC to spin through the unpacked snow, but that's normal operating procedure for all DSC/TC systems. The DSC/TC is very good in slick condition reacting fast and smooth.

    4) Rotor engines get crappy MPG. In city driving the RX-8 is not going to get better than 15MPG. On the highway at steady 60MPH I've gotten 25MPG though. But driving a smooth revving rotory is just hugely fun otherwise.

    Rotories are designed to burn a little oil, so you need to keep two quarts of 5/20 oil in your trunk at all times. Few places carry 5/20 so keep your own stock I say. You'll need to check your own oil regularly which is little bit more work, but I just consider it part of the fun of own a rotory.

    Lastly, you'll need to do the 5 minute complete warm up and 3000RPM 10 second rev procedure to make sure you burn all the gas before shut off to avoid the possible engine flood. But again, these little procedures are a privilege of ownership, rather than a curse. Any excuse to play with the RX-8 is a good excuse in my book.
  • mdw1000mdw1000 Posts: 171
    trispec,

    Thanks! I was also wondering what the regular maintenance is like on the RX-8? And is the driver's position really narrow? I test drove an Acura TSX yesterday and my knee kept hitting the door. Nothing wrong with the car, it is just the way I normally sit when driving...
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    Regular maintance seems the same was any car. I've only got 8700 miles on mine though. Nothing special is listed in the 7500 intervals. Folks say the engine can go to 200K easy. I had a rotory in 1987 which pretty much had the same cost associated, adjusted for inflation obviously.

    Driver seat fill very roomy to me. I'm 6'1" 220lb on a good day and before seeing any doctors. My feet can't touch the firewall and my knees pull back in front of the console on the right and in front of the power window button console on the left. And the seats are the most comfortable seats I've ever sat in.

    I did a 2000 mile trip from Boston to NC. Eight hour stretches on the road with lunch breaks only. I drove 84MPH most of the way. I was wonderfully refreshed at the end of the day. No road buzz, no excessive tireness, no headaches. Just comfortable satisfaction that driving my RX-8 AT is simply pure fun. The RX-8 is so easy to drive it's simply astounding. Love'n it every single day.
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