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Mazda RX-8

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  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,098
    Thanks....I never really left. I'm still a rotor head at heart. Just didn't work out this go round.

    A colleague has a Magnum. Way different car than the RX8.....or, the Mustang, for that matter. The only similarity with the Mustang is the V8. Not a bad ride. Not my cup of tea, but I can see it's appeal.

    Magnum has absolutely no similarities to the RX8. Magnum is big, heavy and needs that motor to haul all that wieght with any amount of verve.

    I've read lots of good things about the NXT wax. Never used it, though. I've been a Zaino "guy" for many years and like it a lot. As they say, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    I was in Miami last week for work. Rented a Solara convertible, but it was even too hot to put the top down.

    Heading for a cruise out of there next weekend. Need some time off in the worst way.
  • Hi all, I'm new to the forums, and I plan on purchasing a 6 speed, with the grand touring package. I have a couple of questions. First off, I've never driven a manual in my life, but for the RX 8 i wanna get the 6 speed, I'm not much of car guy, more of a computer nerd, so I was wondering is the extar Horsepower worth getting the manual? My next questions is that I'm planing on getting a body kit that makes it look like the RX 8 in X2: X men United, is it worth getting the spoiler and any of the other exterior extras if I'm planning on just getting a body kit and a new wing?
    Another appearence question, on some pics of the RX 8, they these two silver bullets on the vents on the side of the car, (sorry for crappy description) where can you get those? it dosent appear that they come on the vehicle stock. And finally how close is the Winning Blue color to the color of the RX 8 in X2? Thats all the questions I can think of for now. Any help would be greatly appreciated :)
  • this is in addition to my previous post, If i do go with the manual, and being rather new to manuals, is it really difficult, I've read alot of post with issues about flooding.
  • secondcitysecondcity Posts: 28
    Learning the manual transmission is a blast- but it is also easier said than done. It takes time and patience. Find a back road with straightaways and some hills. You want to put yourself in every driving scenario involving clutch work.

    The manual trans on the RX8 offers about 40 more horsepower than the automatic. Go with the manual-you'll appreciate that decision down the line.

    Flooding is not an issue for me. I bought an '05 at the end of April. I came to this board after my purchase and I thought I was doomed to experience countless problems. Don't freak out like I did. I have had zero problems- and the car is a blast to drive. I was disappointed at first in the low end torque. Also, Mazda was claiming 0-to 60 in under six seconds -which is b.s. I was getting to 60 mph in the mid to high 6's. . --It took me awhile to get used to the high winding RPMs--Redline is 9000. The car is quick enough for me--but more importantly--it handles like a dream. You won't win a race against a Mustang-but you will outperform most cars- and you will appreciate the way the car handles and feels. It looks a mini-viper--I love it.

    When you start the car- let it warm up before shut down. Its simple--and you will get used to it. The manual transmission offers the ability to give it higher revs- which you must give the car since it has a rotary engine. Check back to earlier posts that involves a person by the name of Pathstar. The guy knows the car inside and out.
    Get the manual-performance wise--it is worth it. You get to maximize each gear to its fullest. You'll appreciate when you have to pick up speed in a hurry to get on an expressway/highway or when you need to pass a slow moving vehicle.
    Good luck.
  • dtopgeardtopgear Posts: 8
    This popped up on the web a few days ago.

    http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/ncap/cars/3534.html

    Ok grant it the car in the pictures is a little...well, altered. :) Mazda should try harder to get a 5 star rating all the way around, btw.

    Also does anyone know if the horsepower in the auto trans RX-8 can be brought up to the same level as the manual with out destroying the transmission?

    Looking soon to be an RX-8 owner.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "Also does anyone know if the horsepower in the auto trans RX-8 can be brought up to the same level as the manual with out destroying the transmission?"

    Depends on how you make horsepower.

    The problem with making the tranny 'live' with the 238hp version isn't the horsepower level, it's the rpm level. Automatics and 9k rpm don't mesh real well.

    If you made more hp by increasing the torque (by using a s/c perhaps) and keeping a more benign rpm, then I don't see any reason why the tranny would have a problem.
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    Many of us are waiting - for certain "developments" that have been in the internal Mazda pipeline for a few years now. These include a new manual trans. that uses "paddle shifters", and a new automatic that can take 9000 RPM. Both may be deemed too expensive by the Mazda accountants, but we shall see - they say we may see in 2006.

    The difference between the "low power" and "high power" engine shows up above about 6000 RPM, and is really evident above 7000 RPM. There are extra intake ports that come into play. These, in essence, allow the torque to continue unabated to 9000 RPM. Torque times RPM equals horsepower. I'm simplifying things greatly here, but this is the essence of the difference.

    The automatic transmission Mazda used was not reliable when the engine was reved above 7500 RPM, so they optimized a "renesis" design for use up to that RPM and paired it with the auto. They optimized another version for use with a manual transmission. It is reliable up to 9000 RPM (the engine is the limiting factor in this case). Because HP is torque times RPM, this is the "high power" engine. In North America we see the "high power" engine as the manual and the "low power" engine as the automatic. In other markets you can get the "low power" engine with a 5 speed manual - because it has fewer parts it is less expensive to build and the 5 speed is less expensive, so that combination gave them a lower cost car to market - still having the RX-8 "looks". The current automatic can't handle more than 7500 RPM - and I suspect it's the torque converter not the gearset that is the limiting factor.

    So, the answer to your question is, without going to forced intake (supercharger or turbocharger), no, the automatic can't be brought up to the manual level. A turbo on the automatic is possible without destroying the trans. but we don't know the exact limits of the transmission, and adding a turbo to any car is not easy being that the engine is controlled by a computer (the PCM), which is not easily modified.
  • dtopgeardtopgear Posts: 8
    Thanks for the info guys. There are some turbos out there. Not sure if they are geared towards an automatic. Think that a Supercharger would be excellent but spinning one past 7500 rpm sounds a little crazy to me. Think the best solution would be a low pressure turbo to boost the low end torque. The PMC is another issue alltogether though.

    Anyway I'm waiting for the 2006 specs to come out. A "paddle shifter" that works would be worth the wait. And does anyone have know of performance figures for the Auto vs the Manual? Does the extra torque of the auto make up for the horsepower loss? Is gas milage any better or worse?
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    Unless you are stuck with a bumper to bumper crawl of a commute you should do yourself a favor and learn how to drive stick. Makes driving (any car) just that much more enjoyable.

    Dennis
  • dtopgeardtopgear Posts: 8
    I know how to drive a stick. Have been driving them since I was 13. I live in Miami. all it is bumper to bumper like 80% of the time. Also my wife is more interested in an auto so although while I prefer a manual gear box, I have to consider an Auto. And frankly I've been in several cars that suck with and manual. Mostly GM products.
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    Hopefully Mazda will fix the 8 for the slushbox set, since in its current build (4 speeds, less power) I would not recommend it.

    I would not recommend getting an underpowered car with the intention of trying to boost it to acceptable levels of power. I would think that is a road to disappointment.

    If you are crawling in FL traffic all the time - the 8 runs pretty hot (see the new recall for melting gas tanks) and has a pretty weak A/C. Couple that with you not wanting the manual tranny and you might want to look at something else?

    Or do like I do - get your wife her own (auto) car and then you can get what you want!

    :)

    Dennis
  • secondcitysecondcity Posts: 28
    I have read and re-read the excellent advice given by pathstar and countless others on the types of winter tires---I appreciate everyone's input.

    My last question on this subject is... Would four "all season tires" work as a replacement for the current summer sport tires on the existing wheels?-- Will that get me through a winter in Chicago, or should I spend the money on the winter tires and wheels.? I have a short two year lease--and I did not realize I would be paying another $1200-$1400 on tires and possibly wheels too. I hate to sound cheap-but I'd like to save a few bucks.
    -- Other than this minor hassle--the car is amazing!

    I know Pathstar bought the 17 inch wheels to gain better clearance as snow builds up in the wheel well / and I know a majority of people have opted for the Blizzaks LM 22's. Your response to all-season tires would be appreciated--
    Thanks.
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    (punishable by death) to compare this amazing car to anything GM can crank out. I came from a die-hard "buy American" family and I adhered to that until a few years ago. The car that changed my life was a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am, 5 speed. I would have gladly given the car away and continued to make the payment just to never have to see it again. The first dealer that quoted me anywhere near pay-off got the sale. To say I hated it is an understatement.

    The RX8 is a great car, but I wouldn't even consider the auto (and I'm a female).
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    sent me a nice letter talking about how important MAZDA service is for the rx8 and it had a business card-type thing you could pull off. It has my dealer address, phone number, my service manager's name, the service dept hours and my car's VIN to put in your wallet. Also, I got a free bottle of touch-up paint and it's even the right color for my car. Boy, it's really yellow in that little bottle.

    On the flipside to car customer service, just sent in a nasty survey for warranty work on the BF's 2004 Chevy Duramax. That ignorant thing goes to the shop every couple of weeks for some irritating little "thing" or something else. He saw my nice little Mazda package today and said "Damn, I spent twice the amount you did on a vehicle and all I get are recall notices, leaks, rattles and paint peeling off plastic."
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    The Nokian WR tires we got are all season. They do have less traction in summer compared to the stock tires, but they work just fine. They are called "all season performance tires" but aren't cheap. You could just get them in stock size, no reason why not. We are happy we got 17", and are now converting the summer setup to 17". The car handles much better with 17" wheels.

    I just put Nokian WR (suv) tires on my Pathfinder last fall. They are great - winter and summer. The SUV designation indicates they are a little "stiffer" to withstand the "incredible" weight of the Pathfinder. ;) (4400 lbs).
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    I have a '96 Subaru Legacy wagon with over 100k on the clock (now) that I picked up "cheap" just for snow days. The AWD + 4 snow tires is AMAZING - and I don't get any road salt on the "good cars".

    Dennis
  • dtopgeardtopgear Posts: 8
    Saw a 0-60 time on the auto of 9.0 seconds. That’s screwed. No auto for me. Really want that paddle shifter though. As for the AC, this is something that the Mazda really needs to bring in some Ford engineers to solve. Don’t know why but Japanese can’t seem to build proper AC!?! We have an element that just keeps barely up with the heat. Parents have a 10 year old jeep that can turn itself into a meat locker if you want. Oh and the wife can drive an auto, she just likes…shall we say…multitask in the car. Auto makes that safer.

    Was I making a comparison of a Mazda to a GM? Hell no lhess. Just a contrast. Mazda, excellent cars…GM, good for building artificial barrier reefs. ;) Take it got a yellow one. That’s another think that I’m hoping will reappear for 2006.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,098
    GM, good for building artificial barrier reefs

    Now, that's funny!

    I do agree....Mazda needs to get Ford involved with the A/C and to get stronger FoMoCo batteries for the 8.
  • mthmsimmthmsim Posts: 4
    For the first time in 10 yrs I'm buying a new car and looking for something fun/sporty. Researched and looked at quite a few and after some test drives narrowed it down to Nissan 350z, Honda s2000, and RX-8. Though it's a great car, I'm dropping the Z due to cost, stiff ride, and the "feel" of the ride. That leaves two very different cars to decide from. I've driven both and will probably test drive once more. The RX is very cool. Smooth-shifting ride, 4-doors with useable back seats, stylish looks, fun to drive, etc. In my research, including reading many posts here I've come across some RX-related issues. Any answers/commentary would be appreciated. Thanks in advance [ want 6 spd manual only, probably touring package and will keep my 10yr old Integra as winter wheels].

    1. Is the flooding issue merely an annoyance, just something to be careful of?
    2. Is everyone getting the bad gas mileage figures I keep hearing about (15mph and less)?
    3. There is some chatter about oil lights(coming on), check engine lights, power loss, engine replacement etc. etc. Are these problems isolated or more common?
    4.Any other complaints/issues/problems?
    5. Looking in Boston area, very few available with Nordic Green Mica, and these only in automatic. Is this an uncommon/rare color or am I not looking had enough?
    6. Sales figures I've seen are abysmal for this car. The guy at the dealer I test drove at has left two messages for me asking if I bought something/am I still interested. I suspect a great deal can be had on one of these. Is invoice (or less) not out of the question?

    I know this is a lot, so any feedback would help. I guess the quality/reliability issue and fuel (in)efficiency are my main worries with what otherwise seems to be an awesome car that is a great value. :confuse:
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,098
    First and foremost, the RX8 is one of the most fun sports cars on the market.

    But, to address your issues.....

    --flooding is only an issue if you shut the car down before it warms up. As long as you get the car up to operating temps, you shouldn't have any issues.
    --MPG will be all over the map. The RENESIS does not like to idle. So, if you're in heavy, stop & go traffic all day, you're MPG will be low. After break-in, I consistently got about 16-17 MPG in city driving, and about 21-24 MPG in all highway driving....exactly as I expected.
    --I don't think there's anything widespread about warning lights coming on in general, but a good rule of thumb is to check the oil level every 3-4 fill-up (a good habit with any car). The RENESIS is designed to use a bit of oil, so it's nothing to be alarmed about as long as you keep an eye on it.
    --I don't know what the sales figures are for the RX8. They came out of the gate "on fire" saleswise last year. I will admit that over the past few months, there seems to be a ton of them on the dealer's lots, though. I don't know if Mazda overestimated the sales, or that sales dropped off that dramatically.

    Bottom line, the RX8 is one of the most rewarding driving experiences you can get from a car at it's price (especially at the discounts dealers are offering now). Is it a little quirky? Yep! But, you'll be hard pressed to find anything that offers what the 8 does at what looks like a selling price of about $24-$25K.
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