This car is amazing.... It is like no other car I have owned. It is fun, sporty, sexy and fast. It may not be the fastest in a straight line but if you are concerned about that you have missed the point of this car. I live in east TN where there are twisty roads everywhere. This car is as close as you are going to get to perfect handling for the money.
my only concern is gas mileage. mazda really needs to spend some time on this. I understand this engine is in a high state of tune and it is a sports car but averaging 18mpg is pretty sad when you drive mostly highway.
Before buying this car please read the FAQs page on RX8club dot com. there are many things that are unique to this car.
Fantastic handling, Great fit and finish, Cheap insurance! (listed as a 4door 2 cyl 1.3 liter), A true sports car for people that cannot live with a 2 seater....
There is not a single thing I would change about this car.
Gas mileage is pretty poor, but it is a sports car that is a blast to drive... I still love it even if it is thirsty....
After a few years - Still tons of fun to drive, but not good for heavy traffic commuting. Don't drive it on snow or ice - you will die. On the other hand, its a great road trip car and the handling is amazing. Turns and stops better than anything I've ever driven. It will do a decent 0- 60 if you are willing to abuse the gearbox and clutch, but why? The thing really turns on above 5,000 rpm and is a hoot. It took some time and practice to learn how to maximize the performance, but once you figure out the engine it is the easiest car to drive fast that I've ever experienced.
Surprisingly comfortable, and everything is in the right place. Interesting looks. The front end is wonderfully styled for my taste.
The tail lights look like kitchen appliances. Sure would be nice to have another rotor or two in the engine
Tons of fun to drive + has turned a lot of heads. I have had many compliments on the design from friends and strangers alike. A police officer told me to roll down my window + I figured my sticker was past due or I had committed an infraction + instead he inquired about the car and told me how much he liked it. The handling is great! Tons of fun around corners and curves. It should be a little faster off the line + this is a significant drawback considering the horsepower + the poor gas mileage. At first I was unsure about the lines but now I love the look. I love the suicide doors + at least 3 adults can fit in the car as long as everyone isn't tall. You need snow tires bad in the snow!
It's a lot of fun to drive. It's quick + handles the curves beautifully. It's very agile. I also love the way the car looks inside and out. It's dark gray with tan and black leather seats. The two-tone leather seats look fantastic. In many ways looks and feels like a car that's much more expensive.
The gas mileage is poor! However, the small rotary engine is largely responsible for the great handling. A car that goes 148 MPH should be faster off the line! When I fill up the tank the automatic shut off at gas stations doesn't stop. It overflows with gas. I have to watch it.
Test drove RX-8, fell in love at 9,000 rpm redline, bought on spot. Screams like a 4-seat F-1 car. This canyon carver runs down M-3s, 911s, and occasional Lambo on CA P.C.H. Hwy 1. Driven 36,000 miles so far, very reliable, comfy seats, compliant ride, good Bose stereo. Not lazy to drive like Chevy V-8. You MUST adapt your driving style to get max speed. Keep it from 5,000 to 9,000 rpm and rotary happily howls. Tiny low weight engine allows for mounting low and rearward in chassis for near mid-engine balance, low center of gravity. Rotary uses oil to lube its seals so top off oil at about five gas fill- ups. 17-20 MPG fine for fast car. If you need big mpg skip all sports cars.
Performance, perfect trade-off between awesome handling and comfortable ride. Great value for the money! Fast but has good back seat, decent size trunk, can serve as a fun, reasonably practical family car. Not common around town. Screams like F-1 Race Car all the way to 9,000 R.P.M. Redline
Gas tank tiny at 14.5 gallons. How about special light weight turbo charged performance edition with track suspension option, carbon breaks, no back seat? Better training for dealers as some dealers not familiar with car. Check out dealer service dept before buy, be quick to find different dealer
I have an '06 RX8 with the six-speed manual. I wouldn't even consider the automatic because it's down on power (212hp for '06/197hp on '04 and '05 models- pathetic considering the manual has 238hp and redlines 1500rpm higher). Basic things to know before buying: rotaries consume more oil (check often) and gas than similar-sized piston engines. Standing-start acceleration is underwhelming but from 30mph and up, watch out! Rotaries need to be revved above 5000rpm to get the best performance. Run the car for at least 5mins to avoid flooding the engine. Handling on this car is phenomenal, a renowned Mazda trait. Car is not designed for snow/ice so don't bother driving in it.
Best handling car in this price range. mooth six-speed manual. Communicative steering. Nice two-tone leather seats. Can easily put hi-end sports cars, to shame in the twisties, but don't expect to win stop-light drag races. Fun, fun, fun!
Would like a 2-seater version like the gen3 RX7 was (I owned two), with either turbo-charging or a three rotor engine. It needs more torque (gen3 RX7's had 255hp/217lbs torque). Not a car for those who've never lifted a hood: Buy a Honda instead. Serious, competent drivers only :)