Last post on Mar 13, 2012 at 4:42 PM
You are in the Mazda RX-8
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Mazda RX-8, Coupe
#3522 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [98nispat]
Jun 11, 2007 (9:17 am)
I myself am an owner of 2004 RX-8, which I purchased as used 2 years ago. At the time of purchase the car had about 33,000 miles on it. It is manual with velocity red color. I love the car so much I brought it to my home country when I left US despite all the inconvenience of not having an official dealer/service here. The car ran amazingly the first time I sat in it and I was hooked. It still runs the same. I believe there were a few recalls that had been performed on it before I took the ownership. Even after I became the owner, there have been two recalls done: vacuum test, which is just a test for the engine and the hot spark plug substitution. There was one mechanical failure which got fixed easily at no cost at the dealer - burned ignition coil. Ever since, I've had zero problem on the car.
2004 model is supposed to be a little quirky, but I would think by now most of the problems have been dealt with. Just make sure that you check all the recalls on the car. Mazda had extended the warranty so that it is still valid on 2004 model though it is no use for me now (being out of states). So do get it thoroughly checked at a Mazda dealership where they should have all the records on the car.
All in all, I would recommend the car and believe at 50,000 miles, it still has many more years to give you lots of fun. I have had a BMW, a Supra, and so on, but this car is just out of the league in terms of driving fun.
#3523 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [articist]
Jun 12, 2007 (5:13 am)
Agreed. The recent comparison of the RX-8 against the Shelby 'Stang, Audio TT, and 350Z gives the same clear message. There's something freak'n magic in the way the RX-8 drives. Nothing else matters, but driving. Everything else discussed here is a distraction only. This forum is for those who love to drive a balanced car.
To that end, I'd like to add that my RX-8 AT is perfect city driving car in this respect. I flip in and out of paddle shifting mode all the time. Traffic issues don't always grant drivers room to reach highway speeds, but let'n the twins howls regularly is fair easy in most urban environments. The RX-8 AT lets driver deal efficiently with the boring jams and then pop into manual for those brief moments of freedom.
#3524 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [trispec]
Jun 12, 2007 (7:22 am)
The real trick is the weight and low center of gravity. It moves like a Boxster because it weighs only 3000lbs and has the engine mounted low like most boxer designs. A pushrod type engine just can't compete unless you literally strip the car down to nothing like the mid 90s generation M3s were.
#3525 of 3618 rx8 for sale
Jun 16, 2007 (2:10 pm)
I have a nice 2004 rx8 for sale.It is silver with black cloth interior.A 6 speed trans and only 20,000 miles.I am moving to phoenix soon and don't want to drive it out there.I'll probably buy a new one when i get settled.I would like to get $18,500 but will negotiate!
#3526 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [98nispat]
Jun 20, 2007 (9:23 am)
I would check the gas mileage before deciding - it could be your SUV gets better than the RX-8 does
My 05 6 speed gets 14-15mpg commuting and 19 and maybe 20mpg on a highway trip. Pretty poor given the small size of the car and the lack or torque. And it requires premium fuel too. If you have not noticed, the premium on premium has gone up - it can now run $0.30-$0.50 per gallon higher than regular. Some 8 owners run regular or mid-grade and give up some performance for cheaper trips to the pump.
On the same commute I get 23-24 in the S2000 and 27+ in the xB - so it is not just my driving style or the route, it is the car.
I would avoid 04 8s like the plague - many, many more problems on the first year cars than on later years.
Long term reliability for any 8 is a concern as well - since they have not been around a "long time" in this iteration. Most have had the powertrain warranties extended due to the problems and recalls. Mazda is not too sure about the future either, you can buy an S2000 HondaCare warranty for 8yrs/120k miles for maybe a grand online, the cheapest you can find a Mazda extended warranty (for less coverage) may be $1,700-1,900.
The 6 speed is a blast to drive, handles like on rails, with a Voodoo knob the shifting is even better than the S2000, great brakes, suicide doors mean a somewhat usable back seat.
Resale value is another problem - some publications rate it as above average, but they are wrong. I have had few sniffs at my like new 2005 RX-8, 11k mile, loaded up 6 speed (GT + NAV + more). Original MSRP 2 years ago $32k +, asking price now $21k - and no takers. Search online car listings and you will see lot of low mile 8s being offered for under $20k. Good news for you, you can get one cheap. Bad news is if you try to sell or trade it later. 2 year old cars are rolling through auctions bringing about 1/2 of MSRP - which is serious depreciation. If you buy it and drive it until it dies, you will not care - but if you need to trade or sell later you may be sorry.
Fun car, but not for everyone - and not a good car to have when gas prices could be on the rise again.
#3527 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [dwynne]
Jun 20, 2007 (10:44 am)
Note - this car gets similar mileage to a Mustang or 350Z or other vehicles in this class. It uses fuel like an engine that's 3x its displacement.
It has two rotors, so that's .67(each rotor, half the total displacement) times 6. Basically it's a 4.0L V6 in a tiny little package no bigger than a typical 1.0L 4-stroke. Of course, Mazda geared it for performance instead of mileage, so the mile-high overdrive is effectively gone as well - which is why it doesn't get 28mpg. (Otoh, take an Accord V6 and manually lock it into 3rd gear(no overdrive) and watch it also get 21-22mpg highway.)
As for the fuel cost, 30 cents is the average spread. Based upon $1.50 gas, that 30 cent spread was 20%. Now, with $3.50 a gallon gas, it's 8.6%.(10% at $3.00) It's honestly not a big deal anymore.
#3528 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [plekto]
Jun 21, 2007 (6:23 am)
Nice analysis. Bravo.
Would gear ratios be the ultimate comparison for gas millage numbers. My RX-8 AT runs around 1500 RPM at 45MPH in 4th gear over drive. My 4 piston 2.2L POS Saturn SL runs around 1200 RPM at 45RPM in 4th gear over drive.
At highway speed my RX-8 AT runs 3000 RPM at 73MPH and my Saturn runs at 2800 RPM at 73MPH.
At 95MPH my RX-8 starts to taken on sweet private jet qualities in ride and wind sound. In theory my Saturn could do 95MPH, but the rattles, steering buzz and boat bouncing behavior have kept me from ever going much past 80MPH.
#3529 of 3618 Re: Thinking about buying an '04 RX-8 [trispec]
Jun 28, 2007 (2:52 am)
Just saw the little videos 370Z and the G37S. From looks, descriptions and price of both these cars I just can't see why they are so freak'n popular. The RX-8 just seems to be a much better all around sports corp at a much better price.
I've ridden in previous versions of both cars and the ride is harsh at best on city streets. On the highway the 350Z and G35 would be nearly intolerable in many of the lower 48's poorly maintained highway surfaces. I can travel a 1000 miles in my RX-8 without any road buzz effect. The RX-8 seems tuned to dampen out the bad roads in this country of ours.
#3530 of 3618 Loss of Power Steering
Jun 30, 2007 (5:21 pm)
New to the board and this has been a serious problem. Has happened 4 times in the last 12 - 15 months. VERY dangerous - I've been lucky I haven't been driving it hard when it did this. Two times no computer logs/records on it - dealer said it looked like nothing happened! Two of the times they had it for over a week before saying Mazda had given them a fix. First time this happened it was fine for about 6 or 8 months. NOW happening again. Mazda told them to soder certain positions of the power steering connector. car back for a week and did it again. Very scary - I have NO confidence the dealer or Mazda knows what's going on and I'm truly afraid to drive it ever again. I have loaner now while they try to decide what to do. it's on lease so I'm going to try to get them to terminate the lease and let me out of the car...
#3531 of 3618 Re: Loss of Power Steering [chparx8]
Jul 01, 2007 (11:41 am)
Loss of steering or just the power to steer with easy. When it happens, is there any signal or does the steering wheel just get ripped out of your hands?
Were you driving on the highway? Seems like city driving would be worse.