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TOKYO -- Mazda Motor Corp.'s RX-8 sports car picked up the 'RJC Car of the Year' award in Japan, giving Mazda one of the industry's most coveted awards for the second straight year, Japan's No.5 auto maker said on Wednesday.

The four-door four-seater RX-8, launched this April, beat out runners-up Toyota Motor Corp.'s new Prius hybrid sedan and Fuji Heavy Industries' Subaru Legacy, which won the Car of the Year award last week from a separate group.

The 74 judges of the RJC (Automotive Researchers' and Journalists' Conference of Japan) also awarded Mazda's new "Renesis" rotary engine, which powers the RX-8, its Technology of the Year award.

After spending half of the 1990s in the red, Mazda, owned one-third by Ford Motor Co., has been rebuilding itself by crafting a fresh brand identity with attractive and unique cars.

A day earlier, its sporty Mazda3/Axela compact was named runner-up in the 2004 European Car of the Year awards, while the Mazda6/Atenza sedan won the RJC's top award last year.

The RJC panel consists of automotive journalists, lawyers and university professors.

http://www.autonews.com/news.cms?newsId=7066
 

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bah, i'm still not impressed with the car's performance. i'd rather pay a couple thousand more for a g35 coupe and have class and torque. this car was overhyped as a z beater which it fails at miserably IMO. even the sales rep at mazda said i'd be disappointed BEFORE i test drove the car. it feels like a solid car, good driving position and a nice car but from a strictly performance aspect, BOOOOO!!!
 

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DDR2 said:
bah, i'm still not impressed with the car's performance. i'd rather pay a couple thousand more for a g35 coupe and have class and torque. this car was overhyped as a z beater which it fails at miserably IMO. even the sales rep at mazda said i'd be disappointed BEFORE i test drove the car. it feels like a solid car, good driving position and a nice car but from a strictly performance aspect, BOOOOO!!!
It's really not a bad car. It doesn't have neck-snapping acceleration, but that's not what it was intended for. After the car breaks-in and people put a few mods on it, that rotary engine will open up like you wouldn't believe. the Rx-8 handles great and it owns the 350z at local autocrosses. It depends on what you are looking for!
 

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npwhite6s said:
It's really not a bad car. It doesn't have neck-snapping acceleration, but that's not what it was intended for. After the car breaks-in and people put a few mods on it, that rotary engine will open up like you wouldn't believe. the Rx-8 handles great and it owns the 350z at local autocrosses. It depends on what you are looking for!
no, it's not a bad car at all. i just think it was overhyped prior to it being released. there was all this talk about how it would a z beater. well after driving it, i don't see what all the talk was about. why couldn't mazda just claim 238hp initially instead of inflating the number just to grab attention? it was a sneaky marketing move that i, for one, didn't fall for. for people in the market for a solid sporty car and willing to pay that much for a mazda, then it'll fit very well. but i just think there's more bang for the buck elsewhere when it comes to overall performance.
 

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DDR2 said:
no, it's not a bad car at all. i just think it was overhyped prior to it being released. there was all this talk about how it would a z beater. well after driving it, i don't see what all the talk was about. why couldn't mazda just claim 238hp initially instead of inflating the number just to grab attention? it was a sneaky marketing move that i, for one, didn't fall for. for people in the market for a solid sporty car and willing to pay that much for a mazda, then it'll fit very well. but i just think there's more bang for the buck elsewhere when it comes to overall performance.
Read this:

http://mazda6club.com/forums/read.php?TID=11362

and this:

http://rotarynews.com/view.php?id=212
 

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npwhite6s said:
that dave coleman article is very intrguing. for those who does not know who dave coleman is, he is the technobably editor of sport compact car magazine.

the conclusion that he (DC) came up with is that there is no way to tell.give me a break! when you get down to it dave coleman doesnt not want to offend mazda by saying that their car is under rated. do you think mazda will ever give sport compact car to test again if they did? wat about promotional money?

here is my conclusion. lets say that dave coleman is right, that there is no way to prove that the rx-8 is really under rated becuase of computer :blahblah:
why didnt mazda just come out and say that right away? or have they even said it? does their history of rating HP have any role to play? shouldnt a car manufacturer, who made the engine, have known the problem before/during/testing/devlopement?

i am not anti mazda in anyway. i just think that car manufacturers should be accountable...again and again and again.
they should just drop a turbo in that car and just end the dispute.

nothing personal against you npwhite6s .
;)
 

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There's also a few cases of engine failure. Saw that posted on some other forum. Is this widespread or just a few isolated cases?

Like devine, i too think they should have turbo'd it. Would have made it a lot less complicating and the advertised 250hp would be easy (heck, old rx7 TT was rated at 250).
 

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5.0 said:
There's also a few cases of engine failure. Saw that posted on some other forum. Is this widespread or just a few isolated cases?

Like devine, i too think they should have turbo'd it. Would have made it a lot less complicating and the advertised 250hp would be easy (heck, old rx7 TT was rated at 250).
I agree, they should have turbo'd it. I would still buy one regardless of the hp #'s. the car is still performing as it should have on the track and the strip. Mazda offered a)buyback b)$500 debit card c) free maintenance, for those who had already purchased or ordered their RX-8.

BTW, I think they are waiting for the RX-7 to come out with a turbo. here is a concept sketch:

 

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npwhite6s said:
I agree, they should have turbo'd it. I would still buy one regardless of the hp #'s. the car is still performing as it should have on the track and the strip. Mazda offered a)buyback b)$500 debit card c) free maintenance, for those who had already purchased or ordered their RX-8.
It still is an awesome car. Sexy, and handles/brakes really well. Acceleration should also be decent (14.3' to 14.5's??). I too like it. From what we've seen, the advertised performance is there even though the Hp wasn't.

I've heard that most rx-8 owners opted to keep their cars anyways (opted for either B or c) so they seem satisfied with the car overall.
 

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personally think the rx8's interior in leather is one of the baddest interiors ive ever seen. The exterior is bad ass to the handeling is really impressive what is it a front engine mid ship? The only thing that is lacking is performance but then again thats a stock engine i want to see what happens when they open up that rotary.

As for the RX7 re release. I heard something along the lines of 2005 - 07. That seems like far away but it really isnt that far. Supposedly the RX7 is going to be released depending on the sales of the rx8. mazda is really trying hard to get back in the game. With cars like the mazda 6 and mazda speed they make some pretty bad ass cars that people dont really look at that often. If they were to bring the RX7 back all hell would break loose. That is MAZDA. if they brought a turbo rx7 into the line up i can see things looking brighter
 

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5.0 said:
Like devine, i too think they should have turbo'd it. Would have made it a lot less complicating and the advertised 250hp would be easy (heck, old rx7 TT was rated at 250).
I swear I read somewhere, a couple times actually, that because the exhaust ports were moved it is next to impossible to turbo the car.

It made the engine more reliable, more hp, better on the gas mileage, and reduced the heat caused by the previous generation...but leaves enthusiasts lacking.
 

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The problem is that the rotary engine is always tuned much more aggressively than most production piston engines are. N/A rotaries are incredibly reliable. I've seen quite a few make it to over 100,000 miles with the owner shifting at revlimit.

There are design problems that most piston engines don't face. For one, cooling is a big issue (turbo or not). Many failures of turbo 13B's due to apex/main seal failure were due to overheating caused by poorly maintained cooling systems. You can overheat a piston engine without severely dammaging it. Rotaries are not that forgiving. In addition compression ratios are limited. The higher you go on compression in a rotary, the more elongated the combustion chamber gets and the lower the displacement becomes. The elongated combustion chamber results in alot of hydrocarbons being dumped into the exhaust or staying in the combustion chamber. This is why the rotaries use 2 spark plugs per combustion chamber and 2 fuel injectors. With increaseing gas prices and ever more strickt emission legislation, this makes the engine less appealing. The above mentioned compression issue requires that more rotors be added. This actually makes the engine much more torquey in a naturally aspirated form. In fact, the quad rotor RB26 used in the Mazda Lemanns car was able to put out around 1,000 hp naturally aspirated. Unfortunately, adding more rotors comes at the price of more weight and even less fuel economy.

Having test driven the RX-8 I have to say I didn't like it. The ergonomics were great, everything felt like it was where it should be. However, when I opened my eyes the interior was gaudy. The gauge cluster looked as it was "tuned by Matrix." The e-brake handle was oddly designed. I could tell the car was designed in Japan because my 6'3", 195lbs frame could barely fit in the car. The suicide doors are cute but un-neccissary. The rear seat is pointless. The trunk was anemic. While the exterior is artistic, it lack refinement and seems just a bit too short. While the car does draw attention from it's body lines, it appears slightly too influenced by the sport compact market to make it fall in an exotic category (as the RX-7 did). The car also rides about 1/2" too high. Honestly I could feel good about buying the car if it's price tag was $22k-$27k, but over $30k is just too much for that car. It's not spacious enough to be considered a sedan but too sedan like in it's features to be considered a sports car. Personally I feel the removal of the rear seat and conversion to a full hatch type trunk would have made it more appealing.

In addition, modding this car would be a bad idea. It's one thing to mod a $15k car (without a warentee), but double the price, and that money spent on modding the car could have been used as the downpayment for a new Elise. Working in that engine bay seems very difficult, for the engine almost completely sits under the dashboard of the car. Also I've seen little aftermarket support for the car. They were few and far between at SEMA this year. In fact the only engine mods I've seen done to them are swaps to 20B's and quad rotors out of Australia.

Honestly I think Mazda and Ford were just trying to do too many things with this car all at once. I think I'll just wait for Globe Motors to release their cylinder based rotory type engine.
 
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