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Mazda RX-8

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  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "The Z06 gets like 19 while racing and it has 505hp! That's what a car mag says anyway =) "

    Either they lie or their definition of 'racing' is somewhat different than mine. You keep you foot buried in the carpet in a Z06 and your mileage will be a LOOOOOOONG way from 19.....
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    vooch....sorry about that. Q and I got off on a tangent. We've been hanging out at Edmunds too long.

    Anyway, back to your MPG concerns. When I owned my beloved RX8, it was really a Jekyl & Hyde regarding MPG. If I was stuck in stop & go traffic a lot, MPG was dismal. If I kept moving, it happened to get quite a bit better.

    At one point, I was getting about 17-18 MPG city and about 22-24 MPG highway. You throw a couple of traffic jams in the mix on a tankful, and you're right at the mileage you're talking about. Size of the engine, particularly with rotaries, really has no bearing on MPG. Any other 1.3L engine, in a fairly lightweight car, will get sterling MPG. BUT, a production piston 1.3L engine won't get anywhere near 238HP or will be capable of 9K RPM, either.

    So, looking at what the RENESIS can do, it's MPG is not surprising.

    BTW....a golfing buddy has an '04 'vette. His MPG would just about mirror what I was getting in my RX8. He was expecting to get high 20s, but has yet to crack anything over 22 MPG.....and that's with GM's "skip shift" tranny that comes into play in all stop and go driving (goes from 1st to 4th and doesn't allow any shifts in between below ~2.5K RPM).
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,331
    Since the '06 RX8 is no different from the previous years (to my knowledge), don't expect any difference in mpg figures.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • People, people... back to reality please. :shades:

    IF you really do want a RX8, who cares about MPG?! Shouldn't be a factor in your decision at all when deciding between this and that, etc. That's not why we buy them. If you're overly concerned with it, the car probably isn't for you. Just like if you care about that when shopping for SUVs, you're silly. You buy an SUV for the space/kids/4 wheeling, etc. You buy a RX8 for speed, style, looks at lights, and the irreplaceable "fun factor". C'mon now. MPG?!! Ugh. If it gets good MPG, it's a bonus. Not the core value of the car.

    AND... If the high gas prices have you wondering if you can afford a few more tanks a month with mid/super gas, then you probably can't afford the car anyway!

    Geez.... MPG in the RX8?! SOOO many better things about this car to focus on. :)
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    is not a big deal. You have to bite the bullet and buy four "winter" tires. We got Nokian WR "all season" tires and find them great. You could use them all year, but the "summer performance tires" the RX-8 comes with (I'm talking the 18" wheel option) do have better traction on warm dry roads. We got 17" aluminum AR wheels (nice open spoke pattern - six as I recall) and put stock size on them only in 17" dia. (of course) - got the smaller dia. to give more room for ice buildup in the wheelwells. The car handles very well in ice and snow, and the TCS/DSC and antilock brakes keeps everything in control. I was so impressed I put Nokian WRs on my 2001 Pathfinder. They also perform very nicely there!

    Using the vehicle in the winter means you need to use a "manual" car wash - where you pull in and wash using their pressure wands. Just feed it money. ;) I start by washing inside the wheel wells and under the sides, then go to the top and work my way down. Don't forget inside the rear bumper-cover. Salt etc. can build up in there as well.

    Other than that it's a nice car in the winter. Just don't let it sit outside if it's going below about -10F. Too easy to flood at those cold temps. and Mazda will not let dealers install any form of "block heater", including the heater hose pump type. They say it confuses the computer. They may be changing that now, however. Our dealer said recently they would install the inline type if we want.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    pathstar....good advice.

    I think any modern day car with TCS and good snow tires can pretty much be a year round car.

    I do have a garage. But, even being heated, it regularly gets to freezing or below when the weather gets real nasty. While I didn't have any issues starting my RX8 in the 2 plus years I had it, there can be days when the temps get pretty low in the middle of the U.S. Flooding would be a concern.

    Ground clearance also comes into play when the snow gets deep enough. While, it is a function of how any municipality cleans up the roads during the winter, I happen to be in a rural area of a big city. Roads may not get cleaned for days after a major storm. Last thing I want to do is to "beach" a car in the snow because of low clearance.
  • Just a question about winter tires. I have a Shinka MT. I live about 10 miles from work, and the snow season is coming up. Should I buy 18" snow tires or a smaller version to allow for build-up in the snow? Also, should I let the dealer mechanics install the tires to ensure that they work with the tire pressure sensor?
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    I'd personally get a set of standard 16 inch wheels for it and put some good Michellin all-seasons on it. Problem solved, especially with the stability control working(and having something to work with as well). Those... well ANY 18 inchers will eat into your mpg and budget fast. 16 inch all-seasons are a dime a dozen, even in that size, by comparison. Easier, too to swap the entire set twice a year.

    ***
    As for the MPG - people don't get it. It's a 1.3L engine, but it develops power on 3/4 of the cycle, whereas an IC engine does it on 1/4 of the entire cycle. So it's a *THREE STROKE* engine, like a super version of a dual-stroke on your atv or dirtbike. Huge power in a small package.

    It's equivalent to a 3.9L V6(two rotors times three combustion areas) - so it gets predictable gas mileage considering the gearing is made for sportiness instead of highway idling at 60mph.

    ***
    Lastly, petition all of the magazines. It's NOT A SPORTSCAR. They make it look bad almsot on purpose. What it is - it's a luxury coupe/sedan with fancy sheetmetal to look sportier.

    Read the reviews of the luxury sprt sedan competition here - then look at the spes. If the RX-8 was included it would have taken 2nd or 3rd place. It's as fast as an IS300, handles as well, and gets only a little worse mileage. It's tons faster than anything other than a BWM 3 series. Let me state that again, but clearer - the RX-8 is virtually equavalent to an IS300 other than the fancy doors and sheetmetal, when it comes to performance. Blows the doors off of an Audi A4, a C230K, and... well, read the sports sedan competition with a printout of the RX-8s times and specs. See how spitting-distance close they all are.

    Of course it's not a Z. Silly people. It's a sportscar-looking luxury coupe. And a really inexpensive one at that.
  • voochvooch Posts: 92
    I think llbeanjeep hit it on the head for me...

    "AND... If the high gas prices have you wondering if you can afford a few more tanks a month with mid/super gas, then you probably can't afford the car anyway!"

    It's about on the tippy top of what I can afford. So the mpg scares me. I still think they can do much better with it though. Compared it to the Mustang v6, which is a 4.0l, it still sucks though, assuming that's accurate, unlike the RX8.

    I was assuming they were racing the Z06 (at least driving it very hard) since they were doing a supercar comparison... I don't think those car mags drive sports cars lightly. Regardless, 19mpg under any condition is still amazing.

    The RX8 is just a slot (in price) above a loaded midsize sedan, so expecting something similar I don't think is unreasonable. It's not like its a supercar that you are paying mega bucks for. Who cars about maintenance etc. if you purchase something like that. The rest of us have to though! At least I do =)

    Thanks for the comments.
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    I don't think you will experience flooding due to the cold. We only have trouble when it gets down to -30C. As for getting "beached", the RX-8 actually has quite a bit of ground clearance. Similar to most "sedans". We haven't had any trouble, although here in Edmonton Alberta we don't usually get deep wet snow - only once or twice a year. Our "normal" snow is 3-4 in. at a time of nice dry snow. It squeeks when you drive.

    As for smaller wheels for ice clearance, we did that because it stays below freezing (way below) for months at a time here! The ice tends to build up until we wash the car. If you live in a more temperate climate it wouldn't be necessary to go with a smaller wheel. As for the tire pressure monitors, you can replace all four wheels with different ones without the monitors if you like. You will get a light on but that's all. Once you change back to the summer wheels/tire in the spring the light goes out and nothing abnormal/bad happens.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    pathstar...thanks! That's good info about the ground clearance. I never took my '04 anywhere near snow because of that very reason.

    I also never had mine flood. But, again....it stayed garaged during the winter.

    If this thing works out with they buyer of my Mustang, I'll be giving my Mazda dealer a call. I'm still leary of someone offering me more money than I paid, though.

    While my RX8 ownership experience was sterling (aside from a few glitches on the early model I had....plus, the whole HP buyback "thing"), I couldn't complain at all how my dealer treated me. Every time I took it in for maintenance work (for free courtesy of Mazda), they updated it with stuff I didn't even know I needed. That included all the current (at the time) reflashes, a new oil pan "grid" and sensor, A/C magnifier, oil changes, tire rotations, and some other stuff I can't recall right now. If a repair took more than 2 hours, they also gave me a free loaner. So, no complaints there.

    My MPG actually got better after about 5K miles. That's not unusual, though.

    My dealer has been advertising in the newspaper that all '05 RX8's (allegedly over 30 of them) with the GT package could be bought for $7K under MSRP. Is this something that most of you are hearing? If so, that puts one ~$25K.....all loaded up.

    Not saying I'll buy another one. Just exploring some options.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "Not saying I'll buy another one. Just exploring some options."

    But after having the Mustang GT (and TORQUE), how would you feel going back to the RX8? Do you think the handling/steering/brake responses of the RX8 would offset the pure acceleration advantage of the GT?
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    It's funny, but after driving the RX-8, the Mustang, 350Z, Q35, etc. all feel like TRUCKS. It doesn't take long to get used to the sneaky accelleration of the RX-8 compared to the brute force accelleration the others have. I get both accelleration and handling with my 3rd gen RX-7, but that's ancient technology.

    The RX-8 is the most integrated electronic car I've seen so far. Next time you get in when it's dark, notice the instrument panel lights, even when you haven't used a key yet! LEDs on low. We added "puddle lights" to ours. If you look at the bottom of the side mirrors, you'll see a triangular plastic plug. An option in Japan puts clear plugs there and lights that shine on the ground (so you can avoid stepping in puddles). We pulled the mirrors off, and added LED lamps inside (white) and clear plastic over the hole left when you remove the plug. Wired the lamps to the interior lamp power, so they come on when you use the remote to unlock the door. Had to add them that way because you can't order the parts - you have to replace the whole mirror. So we modified ours.
    Even more bling. ;)
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    rorr....very good question. I wouldn't be selling the Mustang if I wasn't offered more than I paid for it. It's a good (and very fast) car.

    That said, before my RX8 was wrecked, I had no intention of getting rid of it anywhere in the foreseeable future.

    Bottom line....they're both good, just in very different ways.

    The RX8 is a sterling handler with very good build and materials. It's quick and comfortable. It's also very refined.

    The Mustang handles well, but also has hellacious acceleration. It's comfortable, too. It's not nearly as refined as the RX8, but I didn't expect it to be, either.

    Even after all these months of ownership, the Mustang still draws a lot of attention, whenever/wherever I drive it. When I first bought it, I had lots of offers from others to buy it for more than I paid for it. I didn't expect those offers to keep up this long. Now, my teenage son has run into some insurance troubles (accident). And, since he's still a teen and under my policy, he can no longer afford his rates (yes, I make him pay for his car, it's upkeep and the insurance). While the accident is the main factor regarding his rates, having him insured on the Mustang (as well as all the vehicles I own), even though he doesn't drive it, has put the rates out of his reach. His fault and he knows it.

    But, since I can come away with some jingle in my pocket, and the Mustang was strictly a part time car for me anyway, I've thought about finally taking the opportunity to get something a little more "every day useable". The RX8, given my past experiences, is on that list. The insurance rate may drop it from the list, however. But, I do remember the RX8's rates being much less than they were for the Mustang. Or, I may make my son get his own policy (which doesn't solve his problems).

    Fact is, I think so much of the RX8, that I'd even consider getting another one.
  • ukjimukjim Posts: 63
    I have been following the RX8 vs. Mustang string and just had to add my own 2c worth.
    They are different vehicles, comparisons are redundant. I suspect that previous owners of RX(X) might look at alternatives if tired of the quirks of the motor but I seriously doubt if a Mustang owner will cross shop a Mazda, it's called brand loyalty and both marques elicit fierce loyalty accordingly.
    I don't understand the reason to spend many thousands on a design that is retro (old), but look at the success of the Mini (a better comparison that the VW Bug imho).

    As has been stated before, the 8 is a niche vehicle and I am sure that Mazda has enough marketing gurus to realize that this is more of a "halo" vehicle than a mass market form of transport and they will continue to market it on that basis.
    I for one love the fact that I rarely see another coming the other way.
    As for it being a "luxury sport sedan" I take exception to the term "luxury". No seat memory, single setting seat warmer (slow to warm) no power passenger seat, harsh ride (anyone who lives in L.A. will attest to the expansion joints being poorly damped), weak A.C., cheap plastic dash and fittings, shall I go on....
    Lets accept it for what it is, a beautiful looking, superbly handling sport coupe whose decent performance you can share with 3 others in relative comfort. I have an MT '04 with 12K miles, get gas mileage appropriate for the cars performance and my driving style, it's never flooded, made strange noises, or let me down other than an erratic sensor that was replaced under warranty. I love this car, shortcomings and all.
    Long live the 8
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    The Mustang and the RX8 are shopped as competitors, at least around here.

    They are both sport coupes (putting aside the RX8's suicide doors). RX8 discounted will cost about as much (probably less) than a Mustang GT (at MSRP....which is what they're still selling for).

    Just the mere fact that they're both performance vehicles at roughly the same price, means they will be cross shopped.

    Everyone has different reasons why they would choose one over the other. But, price similarities and sports car focus put them both playing in the same sandbox.

    They both do different things well. But, they also will appeal to the person looking for sports car attributes....performance, handling, looks, etc. IMHO, those commonalities puts them on the same list.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "They are different vehicles, comparisons are redundant."

    Redundant? Off-hand, I can't think of very many direct comparisons between these two that I've seen. Maybe you're thinking of 'irrelevant'?

    Be that as it may, I have the following criteria for my next car:

    First, it must be rewarding to drive. I've had RWD; currently drive FWD. I vastly prefer RWD from a performance standpoint. I value handling/braking/steering response over pure acceleration, BUT from what I understand the current Mustang is no truck in that department (and is probably lightyears ahead of my old '93 LX 5.0). Second, I must be able to seat a couple of kids (on a very occasional basis) in rear seats. Third, it must be less than $30k. Fourth, it must be fairly reliable.

    So far, the Mustang GT and RX-8 are at the top of my list.
  • ukjimukjim Posts: 63
    Point well taken about the RWD, both are direct competitors. I too have two children I periodically carry and it was one of my main criteria in selecting the right vehicle for me. If you put your children in the back I think they will be more comfortable in the 8, irrespective of the ease of access thru the rear doors, compare the rear seat dimensions,
    Mustang Headroom: 35"; Leg room:31";Hip room:46.7";shoulder room:53.3"
    RX8 Hrm w/sunroof: 36.5"; " " 32.2 " "48" ; " " 54.9
    I find it interesting that Ford on its own website only select the Celica GT, Mitsu Eclipse and Hyundai Tiburon as competitors you can do a side by side comparison with.

    I still contest that they are aimed at different demographics. The 8 is designed to carry 4 as a primary function, in the Mustang it is more of a concession
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    One more horse story clarification...

    Mentioned before... by me .... but here in Boston, "street cred" among avid city drivers is of such real quality that regulars on commute routes learn their local routes' hot cars in the same way they learn their beloved Patriot's running backs.

    Today I finally, caught "Black Stallion" ( a new Black 'Stang on my morning commute) idling at a double lane turning stop light. My Nordic Green RX-8 AT didn't catch the Stango's attention until I pulled ahead in a full throttle hard left turn from the light change, with 'Stang'erosa fish tailing off a late start. Equine's can't turn and take off at the same time cause the fixed rear axle lifts one wheel.

    The Stallion caught up on a four land straight after speeding for a fair bit, but then my route dives off onto an old twisty road built at the turn of the century, 'Stang'ster on my tail. These old twisties in Boston live up to their name so I always paddle shift to 2nd, pop 5000 rpm, and attack every snake back beveled turn. 'Stangy baby is literally stuck waiting for the rare straight shots struggling to catch up, as I in my RX-8, disappear around every turn.

    By the time our little mono y mono was over, including a few oil pan pounding monster speed bumps that my RX8 takes at full speed, poor Black Stallion was sweating hard, over heating and needing his stable boy's rub down.

    'Stang bangers just go fast in straight lines on dry flat roads. On any kind of old frost heaved twisty road bed, my RX-8 AT is like an wood elf flashing in and out of view way down the road.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "Equine's can't turn and take off at the same time cause the fixed rear axle lifts one wheel."

    ??? Lifts one wheel? No, they don't. I've never seen ANY car lift a rear-wheel in a turn while under acceleration. I've seen more than a few FWD cars lift the inside rear-wheel while trailbraking into a turn - and those FWD cars had IRS.

    I don't want to speak for anybody else, but I'm finding it hard to take seriously a poster who compares their car to a wood elf and has a half-dozen different cutesy names for 'Mustang'......I think you're trying too hard....
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    trispec....you must have been running a V6 Mustang. A GT would have been ahead by a good margin over the RX8....particularly, the lower powered automatic RX8. Plus, the Mustang GT has a beefier suspension than the V6. It won't out handle the RX8, but it won't fall on its face, either.

    In the twisties, the RX8 will out handle the Mustang, regardless of drivetrain, though.

    Back to comparisons, if I were going to use the back seat, at all, I'd have to opt for the RX8. Those back doors make back seeat ingress/egress so much easier.

    Mustang's back seat is cramped (putting it kindly). To add to this, when you push the front seats forward on the Mustang for entrance in the back, the seats don't return to their previous settings. So, you must re-adjust them all over again.
  • trispectrispec Posts: 305
    ..??? Lifts one wheel? No, they don't. I've never seen ANY car lift a rear-wheel in a turn while under acceleration...

    Well, I can't say the wheel lifts off the ground, but the Mustang's fixed axle sure doesn't help keep enough pressure for that inside tire to not spin. My '90 Mustang 5.0 would spin the inside tire on ALL turning take offs no matter what the driver did. That's what Mustang's are good for, peeling out and burning rubber. Every kid in my high school who knew how to peel out to impress when leaving school. Yank it left or right pulling out of the school's parking with those short, stiff, fixed axles and you're talk'n burn baby burn all the way home.

    Sorry just having some fun. I hate writing Mustang over and over. And my RX-8 does look like an Eleven cloak with all that green mica flickering. Trying hard is not my style. I really hate sweating.

    Besides, at my age strenuous exercise could really kill me.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    LOL -

    Okay, I'll back off. I'm cranky until I get enough coffee (a pot and a half usually does the trick).

    I think your problem with spinning the inside tire may be more due to the design of the rear differential than an issue of solid vs. IRS. Did your '90 5.0 have an open rearend or a limited slip?

    graphic - agree on the rear-seat issue (Mustang vs. RX8). RX8 wins hands down due, mostly, to the improved accessibility. All I know right now is that BOTH offer more rear seat room than my current Celica and I envision only very OCCASIONAL use of the rear seat for my girls.

    I dunno. I may just hold out for a new (rumored) '07 Supra......
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    rorr....LOL!

    You and I couldn't be more opposite on the car buying spectrum. You are "staying the course" with your Celica.

    On the other hand, I've had my RX8 wrecked, replaced with a Mustang....and, if all goes well.....will be selling the Mustang this afternoon to get....who knows what. This all happened within a 12 month period.

    Matter of fact, I'm going out tonight to take a look at a Shimka. We'll see if it drives any differently than what I remember my RX8 drove a year ago.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Agreed. I think we're on the same page with our car DESIRES, but (dagnabit!) I just can't keep up with the whole 'buying' thing..... :cry:

    Heck - I might just keep that Celica until the wheels fall off (could be a while) and buy a toy instead. There's a company in north Texas that builds a really nice Lotus 7 knock-off using the drivetrain from the S2000. And they offer a supercharger option. Imagine - 300 hp in a 1300lb roadster with Lotus handling...... :surprise:

    http://www.wcmultralite.com

    .....now I've got to wipe the drool off my keyboard again....
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    WOW....that Lotus knock off would be unreal.

    I've seen a couple of "REAL" Loti running around southern OH. Nearest dealership is in Chicago, though. I just wonder if they have to make the 5 hour trek to Chitown every time they needed service.....or, just take it to a Toyota dealership?

    As Masserati dealership opened up in Cincy about a year ago. I've yet to see one on the street, though. As conservative as it is around here, I'm surprised such a dealership could exist.

    With an S2000 motor (supercharged, no less), I'd definitely find myself in jail if I had one.

    I know you've been looking. So, what kind of prices are you seeing for new '05 RX8s with the GT package?
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Haven't talked hard prices yet since I'm not ready to buy. I'd prefer the touring package instead (black leather might get a bit warm here in a central Texas august :surprise: ). I'd imagine $27k would be doable for a touring package MT RX8.

    re - lotus 7 ultralite: I'm a bit curious if they could use the RX-8 drivetrain instead of the S2000. I'd think it was compact/light enough (and probably more available).

    300 hp in a 1300lb. roadster, mmmmmm - do you realize that for your Mustang GT (3450lbs) to have the same power to weight ratio, you'd need nearly 800hp? :surprise:
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    rorr...I couldn't even imagine 300 HP in a 1,300 lb car. Just like I couldn't imagine the Mustang with 800 HP on tap.

    Either would be quite interesting, though.

    Just got back from lunch time at the bank. The Mustang buyer's cashier's check was "all good". I deposited the money and he drove me home in my (now his) Mustang. He drove away a happy camper.

    I'm a little bummed because I had a lot of fun in that car over the last several months. But, it's one of the few (probably only) times I'll ever be able to buy a new car. Drive it around for months and months. Then turn around and make more than I paid for it. After subtracting taxes, tags and other misc charges, I figure I made about $1,200 on the deal.

    It's time to go looking again.

    I figure an RX8 GT 6M that stickers between $32-$33K less the $7K the dealers are all advertising, should put the price around $25K-$26K. I'll also look at Audis tonight.
  • If you're looking for an RX8 GT, you may as well spend another $1500 and get a Shinka if you can find one. With the destruction of the RX8 plant in Japan last year, the production for the Shinka was actually lowered to less than 1000 units. That's extra resale value right there. Also, 2005 is the first model year for the limited edition for the RX8. However, there are two things to keep in mind. You're stuck with the Black Cherry Mica (won't be a problem if you like that color). And secondly, you cannot have a stock navigation system installed because the satellite receiver for the Sirius satellite radio takes up the space required for the nav system's satellite receiver.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,238
    emerald....I'll be looking at a Shinka tonight.

    Seems there isn't a shortage of them in souther OH.

    Thanks!
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