Mazda RX-8 Quality

jclemmerjclemmer Member Posts: 2
edited March 2014 in Mazda
Hey. I recently went to a local dealership and looked at a 2004 mazda RX-8 with the touring package. It seems in nice shape and I'll be returning this tuesday for a final look and test drive.

The only deterrent I've encountered is the volume of posts on this site and others of owners complaining about engine problems etc. Can I expect this car to last over the next few years without any major maintenance ? Also, what could I do to improve the life of the car ? This will be my daily driver so I would like to have a car I can count on not being in the shop every couple of weeks. Would you RX-8 owners advise that perhaps the issue is more of a few disgruntled owners who took poor care of their cars or a widespread mechanical defect ? Thanks.


  • bryan102bryan102 Member Posts: 5
    I have had my 2005 AT for 2.5 years and have had zero problems with it. It has never flooded (I have been careful about that), I have heard no popcorn noises, there are no annoying rattles, the brakes used to squeal but that has stopped, nor have I had any bits break off. The gas mileage is not great but I don't put all that many miles (kms for us in Canada) on it in a year. It is wonderful to drive in the long as you put winter tires on it.

    Driving the rotary took some getting used to but that came quite quickly. In order to keep the rpms high (in order to keep some torque available) I drive the AT using the paddles almost exclusively. The car is a joy.
  • mugster65mugster65 Member Posts: 1
    Ive had a 2004 8 for 3 years now.
    Changed the brakes- Warranty
    few flashes - Warranty

    other than that its been a pleasure. few rattles (nothing to bad ) here and there.

    make sure its been updated on the flashes and brakes and your good to go.
  • trispectrispec Member Posts: 305
    What kind of gas do you get up in Canada. My 2005 RX AT has always had the popcorn/rattle from the engine. I've had to conclude it's something about gas additives here in the Northeastern US (Boston).

    Do you use any special additives? What brand of gas? Thanks.
  • bryan102bryan102 Member Posts: 5
    I buy premium grade gas from the majors in Canada (e.g., Shell, Esso, Petro Canada). Nothing special so far as I can tell. I use no additives beyond the stuff the petroleum companies claim they put into the gas. I live in Southern Ontario...about an hour west of Toronto so our climate is rather similar to what you see in Boston.
  • trispectrispec Member Posts: 305
    Do you switch brands and vendors regularly?
  • bryan102bryan102 Member Posts: 5
    I do indeed switch vendors regularly but not intentionally. I buy the gas when the tank gets low and from whatever station happens to be there.

    Having recently claimed that my RX8 has given me no trouble, I discovered the other day that the headlight leveling warning light suddenly came on and stayed on. The service manager at the local Mazda dealer reckons it is a sensor problem and they are replacing two of those today under warranty. We shall see.
  • dee3dee3 Member Posts: 2
    Hi there,
    Not sure if you bought the car yet, but I just traded my 04 RX8 w/touring package and mileage of about 10,000. Dealership gave me $17k which I know is low but I was relieved to trade it for an 06 RX8 just because of the mechanical problems...the warranty helps of course cause you don't have to pay. Luckily my dealership is great and when the battery wouldn't recharge they still covered it, though I was suppose to pay 50%. I think they felt bad that I was in there every other month between the recalls (had to leave it there for 2 wks & problems). The check engine light is annoying as it comes on it you don't tighten the gas cap. I think I just never bonded with it because it traumatized me 2 months (after buying it new) when it wouldn't start and had to be towed...I was having trust issues :) Good thing I still have my RX7. Whenever RX you get though, definitely get snow or all season tires for the winter! I had to leave her in the garage for 6 wks before I was brave enough to take her out again. Even a 1/4 inch of snow won't allow her to get out of the neighborhood. It is FUN to drive on summer days.....
  • mike245mike245 Member Posts: 5
    My sister has had an 8 since 2004, never any problems. never had to bring it in for anything. Anyone in the Boston area: Ive had service done at Mazda Gallery in Norwood, they do a wicked good job, so Im not worried about buyin the speed3 or RX-8. I know the RX-8 will be tip top, and if I have any problems, I know I can take it to a good place.
  • trispectrispec Member Posts: 305
    Bought my RX-8 from Mazda Gallery in Boston. I caught a bungie cord in my front left rim at 75MPH on I95. The spring and hook got flung up and slammed back on top of the left wheel feeder. Ugly dent and scratch resulted right on the crease. Mazda Gallery took out the dent and painted and resealed the whole feeder. They did a fantastic job. Can't tell anything ever happened.
  • flatpickflatpick Member Posts: 43
    I've had my '04 RX8 MT Tour Pkg since Oct 03...driven just about every day since...38K miles on it.

    No troubles with engine...oil light warning came on a few times....had all the recalls and flashes done....MPG aint wallet friendly these days. I've had the water condensation on the oil dip stick in the winter problem since I got it, but haven't really worried about that.
    Never had any problems with cranking or stalling or plug fouling.

    Non engine woes: silver finish on shifter flaking off, temp knob broke off once (recall item), plastic battery box cracked.

    I had the 30K mile tune up....they replaced a wheel bearing and the battery.

    Good Luck
  • ksmigelksmigel Member Posts: 56
    We've had our RX-8 for nearly four years now. Absolutely no problems, and not even a rattle from the tight as a drum cabin.

    I honestly think this is an amazing value and very under appreciated motor car.

    It's handling is nothing short of amazing, the rotary engine is very quick as long as you keep the revs high, which is easy to do since the engine is so incredibly smooth, and the car's ride quality is spectacular for a sports car, especially given the amazing handling.

    Driven easily, this car is a freakin' Lexus. Driven quickly and tossed into corners, it's damn near a 911 (with perfect 50/50 weight distribution to boot).

    And the fuel economy is not exactly horrid for a sports car, either, contrary to so much discussion. 21mpg, which is about what we average, is not too shabby, with the 6 speed manual.

    The only thing you need to do is check the oil level once or twice a month, depending on how hard you drive it. That is not a big deal. The motor has oil metering pumps that are programmed to inject oil into the rotary chamber to keep the apex seal appropriately lubricated.

    I will say this: If you buy an RX-8, just buy the manual. The automatic has a weaker motor, and you just can't hit the 9,500 redline as you can with the manual.

    How many cars will you buy again? We will definitely get another RX-8 which speaks volumes.
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