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Mazda: RX-8 news **Final Version Revealed (page 4)**

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Mazda: RX-8 news **Final Version Revealed (page 4)**

 
Old 04-05-2003, 06:29 PM
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Mazda: RX-8 news **Final Version Revealed (page 4)**

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Old 04-05-2003, 06:30 PM
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The beep is back. It's not exactly the tingly, joy-buzzer siren of the late, lamented RX-7 but rather a clear, solid tone that announces you've reached the rarefied redline of 9000 rpm. To fans of the rotary engine, it's music far sweeter than any score composed by Chopin or Tchaikovsky. And this time around, the Wankel 2-rotor is packaged in the Mazda RX-8, a vehicle that forces us to re-examine the definition of sports car — call it "variation on a rotary theme."

Progeny of both the RX-Evolv and RX-01 show cars, the Hiroshima-built RX-8 isn't meant to be a direct replacement for the RX-7 — although Mazda is not ruling out the possibility of a successor. Rather, it's a very capable-handling, affordable rear-drive sports car with room for four people, with ingenious doors to admit those people. It's powered by a new version of the Wankel engine called Renesis, whose 250-bhp output approaches that of the third-generation RX-7's, yet without its twin turbochargers, higher emissions and thirst for fuel. Credit a new design that eliminates the peripheral exhaust ports, moving them instead to the cast-iron side plates in the rotary's Dagwood-sandwich construction, which alternates these plates with the two aluminum rotor housings. The Renesis design allows for 30-percent-larger intake ports and no overlap between intake and exhaust, which means that unburned hydrocarbons are carried into the next combustion cycle rather than simply coughed out the exhaust ports.
RX-8s come in two basic configurations. Want clutchless ease? Then $25,180 buys you a version with 210 bhp and a 4-speed automatic, with sequential shifts summoned through paddles on the small-diameter 3-spoke steering wheel. The automatic version's lower output is traceable to rpm limitations of the torque converter, restricting engine speed to 7500 rpm, though its peak torque is actually higher than the more powerful engine — 164 lb.-ft. at 5000 rpm, versus 159 lb.-ft. at 5500. The automatic car also has smaller brake rotors, a 16-in. wheel/tire package and slightly more compliant suspension.

For the full 9000-rpm, 250-bhp rush, look to our 6-speed manual-equipped test car whose $26,680 base price gets bumped to $31,100 with just about every conceivable option: xenon headlights, foglights, heated leather seats, a crisp-sounding Bose audio system with 6-CD changer and a power moonroof. Its Renesis rotary gets a third intake port for each rotor (versus the automatic version's two) that pipes in at the 6250-rpm transition point of its complex, variable-volume intake system for improved high-rpm breathing. Along with firmer suspension, a slightly larger front anti-roll bar (26.5 mm versus 25.4) and 5-spoke 18 x 8-in. wheels mounting 225/45R-18 Bridgestone Potenza RE040 tires, the 6-speed car also has bigger brakes (12.7-in. front rotors, 11.9-in. rears). Mazda's DSC stability control is an option.

With either RX-8, the novelty here (besides the Wankel engine) is that you can take three friends along on your sports-car experience...provided two of them are children, or small to average-size adults...in reasonable comfort, especially in the head-room department. Its Freestyle door system (Mazda's term) consists of conventional front doors, and rear-hinged


By incorporating the B-pillars inside the aft, rear-hinged doors, Mazda’s Freestyle door system creates a cavernous opening on each side of the car. Once inside, there are all the proper sports-car accouterments: excellent, properly bolstered seats with shoulder-support wings; aluminum-shod pedals with proper heel/toe spacing; a wonderfully positive shifter; and a readable set of gauges whose nighttime illumination offers a choice of white or red.

rear doors that swing out 80 degrees, creating an opening so large it resembles one of those cutaway interior bucks you see at auto shows. It also begs the question of how the RX-8 would fare in a side impact. The answer? Quite well, as Mazda has incorporated a "virtual B-pillar" of tubular steel inside the largely aluminum rear doors that spreads crash loads to the rocker panels and roof. Additionally, there are the usual internal side beams, and pins along the tops and bottoms of the doors that engage in corresponding sockets on impact to minimize intrusion. A full complement of side curtain, thorax and frontal airbags reduces the danger further still.
Part of Mazda's self-described feeling of "comfortable snugness" in the RX-8's cockpit comes from its high, full-length center tunnel, a reinforced backbone structure that adds rigidity to the unit body and makes the unusual doors possible. On either side are nicely supportive, thin-shell front seats, each incorporating a rotor-shaped trim piece in the integral headrest. The rotor motif appears in several other places, but is most exquisitely rendered on the shift knob. The driver faces a serious set of gauges, the large center-mounted tach having an inset digital speedometer. In a siamesed dial to the right, oil pressure; to the left, coolant temperature and fuel. Both the instantly decipherable climate-control knobs and stereo controls are integrated into a single panel whose lustrous black finish resembles Japanese lacquered wood — a handsome treatment also used on the door panels for the window switches. Along with high-quality plastics, touches of chrome and contrasting inserts for the door panels and seats, it's a remarkably well-finished and appealing interior at this, or any, price point.

In the rear seats, passengers will a) experience mild claustrophobia or b) feel like junior executives being whisked to their destination in a small private jet, due to the curvature of the roof and view out the smallish side windows that tilt out for ventilation. Remove a plastic panel between the seats, and a pass-through to the trunk is revealed. The trunk itself, though narrow of aperture, is deep and wide enough to hold two standard golf bags. Part of the volume is due to the lack of a spare tire, but a small kit containing a compressor and fix-flat goo is included.

The driver's seat, of course, is the one to have. If you're looking for the edgy, visceral thrill of the RX-7, you might be slightly disappointed; the RX-8 barters a measure of that sports car's white-knuckle aggression for an extra dose of real-world civility. There's impressive hardware underneath to make that happen: a classic double-wishbone front suspension with forged aluminum arms, and all-new 5-link rear suspension; and in a page borrowed from the Miata and RX-7, a more rigid, closed-section truss that connects the transmission and Torsen differential and parallels the one-piece carbon-fiber driveshaft. Combine this with an engine placed 1.6 in. lower and 2.4 in. farther back than in the RX-7, and one should have a car that's agile and changes direction quickly.

One does. But first, twist the key to experience the near-vibrationless character of the Wankel. Even at idle, the 2-rotor emits a unique, chirpy murmur. As revs increase, there's a muffled, bandsaw-through-fiberglass wail as the tach soars to 9000 rpm. Even at redline it's quite smooth compared with its piston counterpart, because for every revolution of its eccentric shaft (the crankshaft's cousin in a Wankel), each rotor has made a leisurely one-third turn. It doesn't deliver a super-torquey feel like Nissan's 350Z, for example, but the power swells with rpm, and the close-ratio 6-speed with sublimely compact throws makes keeping this engine on boil a delight. Like a Honda S2000 with its similarly elevated revs, it truly engages you in the driving experience.

With a tire-smoking launch (best times were achieved dropping the clutch at about 7500 rpm), the RX-8 in our testing sees 60 mph in 5.9 seconds and charges through the quarter in 14.5 sec. at 95.6 mph — a match for the Porsche Boxster and certainly quick by modern sports-car standards. Rather than ear-pinning straight-line acceleration, though, it's the overall balance and coordination of this chassis coupled with the Renesis' inimitable delivery of power that make the RX-8 so rewarding to drive.

Stab the brakes and there's a reassuring firmness to the aluminum-capped pedal. Load up the suspension fully in a turn and discover 0.88g of grip, albeit accompanied by some very un-RX-7-like roll softness that's a tradeoff for its relatively supple ride. (If you've ever driven a third-generation RX-7, you know that a kidney-friendly ride quality was not its strong suit.) Steer into the mildest of kinks or a wrist-crosser of a hairpin, and there's precision feedback from the electrically-assisted rack, and a nice linear gain of effort the farther the steering wheel is turned. Everything works in satisfying harmony, building to limits in a predictable way. Exceed those limits and you won't be punished with snap oversteer or irretrievable push. Said another way, if you drive it in the toss-and-catch mode, the catching is easy.

So what we have here is an excellent, civilized sports car that just happens to have four doors. A bit of an enigma, perhaps, but a thoroughly fresh concept that is practical enough for some people to rationalize a sports-car purchase, especially considering its temptingly low price. Quoting ourselves, from Road & Track's own Illustrated Automotive Dictionary: "In truth, these days a sports car can include almost any performance car that is exhilarating to drive and puts a smile on the driver's face." Judging from the Cheshire cat expressions of everyone around here who's revved its 2-rotor with enthusiasm, the RX-8 wholeheartedly qualifies.

The Competition

Mazda has taken such an unusual approach with the RX-8 that it's difficult to find a direct competitor, but the Infiniti G35 Sport Coupe comes close. The Infiniti's rear seats offer more leg room but considerably less head room. Its chassis delivers more grip with flatter cornering, but the Mazda has the edge in its lighter, more agile handling feel.
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Old 08-24-2003, 06:30 PM
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Mazda lowers hp on RX8

hey guys
sorry if this is a repost
http://www.rx-8forum.com/showthread.php?threadid=9347

since its got less hp. and some owners dynoed it around 180 whp, do u think its a closer competition? i mean, it seats 4 people, small engines, great styling on both, and somewhat near price tag.

whats your opinion?
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Old 08-24-2003, 06:40 PM
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Heard this story circulating.

I'd probably return the car, just to get something new.
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Old 08-24-2003, 08:37 PM
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I have to disagree on the great styling...I've tried to like it, but that things UGLY.
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Old 08-24-2003, 08:47 PM
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I don't care for the styling, and the back seat is for very occasional use only.

I think they made a mistake. They should have brought back the RX7 instead.
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Old 08-25-2003, 12:01 AM
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man this is getting to be STANDARD mazda and if i was a mazda owner it would piss me off. Off the top of my head with no digging(so there might be more) the 3 most performance oriented mazdas have all ben overrated HP wise. The mazda miata was supposed to get a horsepower addition a few years back and in reality got nothing. The mazda 6s cranks about the same HP as the tsx..not the rated 220.(although it does have a bit more torque than rated as does the tsx and now the RX8 with an overrated motor. 180 hp if that is true is only about 220..mazda needs to stop shooting itself in teh foot
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Old 08-25-2003, 12:11 AM
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Didn't Nissan have the same problem with the Last Gen Nissan Maxima??

I guess that is why Honda Underrates there cars
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Old 08-25-2003, 01:54 AM
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Originally posted by Iceman
I don't care for the styling, and the back seat is for very occasional use only.

I think they made a mistake. They should have brought back the RX7 instead.
It's coming. 2005 Check latest R&T
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Old 08-25-2003, 01:56 AM
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But 5 in my group incl. me, test drove the car and swear it's as quick as a G35 coupe or 350Z. Maybe b'cos it's lighter.
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Old 08-25-2003, 09:51 AM
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Originally posted by TSXautoXer
But 5 in my group incl. me, test drove the car and swear it's as quick as a G35 coupe or 350Z. Maybe b'cos it's lighter.
When I raced an RX8 last month, I beat him on the highway, stoplight, and just random running from a roll at different speeds. For the 30 mins that we messed around, I beat him every time. In the highway I was able to pass him and merge into his lane as my acceleration lane would end. In the stoplight race, by 75 I would be able to complete overtake him, and merge in his lane. When it was apparent he could not beat me no matter what, he started going around the curves really fast in the 2 lane roads. I have to admit that that's the only part where he beat me fair and square. It does have the benefit of 50/50 distribution and RWD. By the way, I have a 2002 TLS. Racing the RX8, I immediately knew that it didn't have as much horsepower as advertised. My TLS is auto and the RX8 was manual and the guy had a lot of experience with stick shift.
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Old 08-25-2003, 12:53 PM
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if you do some research the rx8 boards curretnly have one member that has been able to break 15s with a time slip. He hit like 14.9 repeatedly with a 14.8 once I think. That's pretty quick. But it's not the car that mazda was purporting it to be. it's cranking at a max 220hp, maybe less and weighs in about 2900-3000lbs. Torque output in the 120s. Basically it's very very similar charactersitics to an rsx-s bu tthe rsx weighs a little less. Obviously it's still quicker than a tsx...but not by as much as you would think.
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Old 08-25-2003, 12:57 PM
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People on that board are saying it's just an honest mistake like the miata but i'm seeing a trend that would bug me if I was a mazda enthusiast. Is this where gilbo is supposed to insert the unhealthy japanese ponies comment?
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Old 08-25-2003, 01:38 PM
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Actually if you think about it the problems even worse. Mazda is owned by Ford! Remember the fiasco with the 99? Cobra SVT? That thing was way underrated too, then the miata thing and now this. I think Ford's way of developing cars should be in question as a whole. I think the problem is that they made a last minute chip upgrade to pass emissions at port and caused big problems. My boss has a RX-8 and he's thinking of turning it back in. He payed for a car with 250hp anything less and he should be getting a refund, then on top of that he had to wait over 6 months for this crap to happen. First they rated it at 250hp, then 247hp now 238hp and the dynos say it's even lower than that! Yeah it's putting 250hp in Japan but their emission laws aren't bad and they are running on higher octane gas. Also my boss is getting shitty gas mileage like 15mpg on the highway!!!!!! Big problems to wait over 6 months for. Crazy!!!! I would never get a Ford or Mazda now after all this! All those people that compare the 6 to the TSX are nutz!!! TSX outclasses it every which way.
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Old 08-25-2003, 02:18 PM
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interesting tid bit about your boss who is driving one. The mazda 6s rated at 220 hp is actually more like 210 max.(the tsx and 6s crank nearly identtial hp numbers) But that's not that bad, and the 6s has more torque.)
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Old 08-25-2003, 05:01 PM
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OMG read this thread.

http://www.rx8forum.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=8919



seems rx8s getting 13mpg is a very common occruence :'(
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Old 08-25-2003, 09:19 PM
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yikes.....
that's suv territory. i know rotaries have worse gas mileage than piston engines but didn't expect them to be this low. kinda ironic when the engine is super small while drinks like an suv
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Old 08-25-2003, 09:57 PM
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as if they didn't know, eh? What bull----
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Old 08-25-2003, 10:47 PM
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I am very dissapointed in Mazda for this STUNT again. And I read the car is getting 13-14MPG for 200miles on a tank.

Though AT LEAST they admit their problem (cough, cough Nissan)
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Old 08-25-2003, 11:32 PM
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All that hype about an environmentally clean engine with fuel efficiency really paid off for them. I read all those threads and I wouldn't be surprised to see that 238hp number revised downward again. Say what you want about the TSX, but at least our company UNDERestimates power numbers.
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Old 08-26-2003, 02:31 AM
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Originally posted by vandy786
When I raced an RX8 last month, I beat him on the highway, stoplight, and just random running from a roll at different speeds. For the 30 mins that we messed around, I beat him every time. In the highway I was able to pass him and merge into his lane as my acceleration lane would end. In the stoplight race, by 75 I would be able to complete overtake him, and merge in his lane. When it was apparent he could not beat me no matter what, he started going around the curves really fast in the 2 lane roads. I have to admit that that's the only part where he beat me fair and square. It does have the benefit of 50/50 distribution and RWD. By the way, I have a 2002 TLS. Racing the RX8, I immediately knew that it didn't have as much horsepower as advertised. My TLS is auto and the RX8 was manual and the guy had a lot of experience with stick shift.
Yeah, now that I think about it, Mazda cars always feel faster. My first ever car was a 77' Mazda 1000 and I always think I am doing 60mph while actually, it's more like 40mph...I think mazda makes the engine sounds faster.
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Old 09-11-2003, 11:52 AM
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Mazda RX8: Guess how often you have to check the oil level...





Oil's Not Well For Innovative RX-8


ow often do you check your oil? Once a month, or maybe every 2,000 miles? Buy one of the new Mazda RX-8s and you're supposed to look at it every two tanks of petrol! And that was enough to give at least one Auto Express reader doubts about signing on the dotted line.

Gary Fenton, of Stevenage, Herts, was considering swapping his BMW Z3 for the car, but when his dealer mentioned the oil change requirements, it left him unsure. "I was astonished the RX-8 needed that level of maintenance," Gary told us. "It's unheard of in this day and age."

However, a Mazda spokesman defended the car's oil use. He said: "We've never denied the rotary engine uses quite a lot of oil. That's because a mist is sprayed over it to lubricate the tips, and all owners will be advised to check the levels regularly." He added that if the oil level gets too low, a warning light will come on, and if that's ignored the car will go into 'limp home' mode. But he couldn't confirm who would be liable if there was a mechanical problem caused by a driver not regularly checking the oil.

Meanwhile, there's bad news for the RX-8 in America - its power output has been assessed as up to five per cent less than first advertised. The problem stems from last-minute engineering changes to ensure the car met strict US emissions regulations. Mazda has offered to buy back most of the 3,551 that have been sold Stateside.
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:05 PM
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damn, rotary engines suck.
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:05 PM
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wow............. :shakehd:
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:15 PM
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this is pathetic, if the rotary engine is such a damn nightmare (reliability, maintainance, this oil business, the lack of power, the fact that mazda has to re-advertise the HP specs on the car) why the the hell do they even bother??? i mean i understand that mazda has always used the rotary for the RX-7 and earlier cars and that the RX-8 is the new generation and all that but come on, that RX-8 would be sooooo much better with a 2.5l 4 banger with like 250 hp and 200 lbs of torque i mean why is that so bad? would it be so bad to make the RX-8 with a normal engine?? i dont understand why they insisted on this motor when its a nightmare from begininng to end
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:19 PM
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wait wait wait wait......

this means nothing.


so what is the actual maintenance schedule? when are u supposed to change oil?


even in the CL manual it recommends that you CHECK your oil level everytime you get gas.

thats just a suggestion for PREVENTATIVE maintanence... means shit.
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:21 PM
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Originally posted by soopa
wait wait wait wait......

this means nothing.


so what is the actual maintenance schedule? when are u supposed to change oil?


even in the CL manual it recommends that you CHECK your oil level everytime you get gas.

thats just a suggestion for PREVENTATIVE maintanence... means shit.

True and I agree but the main point here is that the rotary engine consumes a lot more oil than non-rotary engines.
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:22 PM
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Originally posted by jimcol711
this is pathetic, if the rotary engine is such a damn nightmare (reliability, maintainance, this oil business, the lack of power, the fact that mazda has to re-advertise the HP specs on the car) why the the hell do they even bother??? i mean i understand that mazda has always used the rotary for the RX-7 and earlier cars and that the RX-8 is the new generation and all that but come on, that RX-8 would be sooooo much better with a 2.5l 4 banger with like 250 hp and 200 lbs of torque i mean why is that so bad? would it be so bad to make the RX-8 with a normal engine?? i dont understand why they insisted on this motor when its a nightmare from begininng to end

They insisted with the rotary engine because of all the advantages of a rotary engine. However, it also comes with its DISadvantages as well. And burning more oil than usual, is one of them.
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:30 PM
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Originally posted by gavriil
True and I agree but the main point here is that the rotary engine consumes a lot more oil than non-rotary engines.
but how much more? i havent seen that figure yet.


and under what terms..... alot more than an engine with similar displacement?

alot more than an engine with similar power?

what?
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:30 PM
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what exactly are the advantages of the rotary??? i mean, sure it makes alot of power/liter. but other than that, what advantage is there?? it gets lousy mileage, requires strict preventative maintainance, has always consistantly had reliability issues, etc. am i missing all the advantages? id love to hear them.
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:33 PM
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it is pretty odd that a car with a shitload less moving parts then a regular engine uses supposedly more oil.


id still like to know the figures... what is the maintenance schedule?
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Old 09-11-2003, 12:39 PM
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i just did a quick search of the rx8 forums and it seems people arent reporting massive oil consumption.... (negligable change in oil level at 1000 miles)

also it seems oil is being changed at about 3000 miles..... same as we recommend for the CL.


doesnt seem like a big deal to me?!


and like i said.... your supposed to check the oil in your CL at every (or every other) refueling anyway....
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Old 09-11-2003, 01:08 PM
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Originally posted by jimcol711
what exactly are the advantages of the rotary??? i mean, sure it makes alot of power/liter. but other than that, what advantage is there?? it gets lousy mileage, requires strict preventative maintainance, has always consistantly had reliability issues, etc. am i missing all the advantages? id love to hear them.
From my post here:

http://www.acura-cl.com/forums/showt...hreadid=113448

Well...long story, but I will keep it short...

First, rotary engines makes a lot more power and pretty good torque when you take into consideration their displacement. The engine in the RX8 (and the RX7) is about 1.3 liters large. Now, if that were a normally aspirated, internal combustion engine, it would make around 80 HP in a "base tune" and 100-130 HP, in an agressive to a "very agressive tune" state. Torque in either case would be around 80-90 lb-ft.

The engine in the RX 8 (in its more agressive tune) makes 238HP and about 160 lb-ft. So as you see, there is a lot more power/torque coming out of there. Also, if you see the torque graph, it's suprisingly flat and it lasts a lot longer than non-rotary engines do.

So if you have a small engine, then overall packaging gains. So more room for other things like passengers, etc. Less weight also. Lower center of gravity too. This RX8 car is one of the best in any category when it comes to center of gravity. The engine "sits" really low and also behind the front axle which helps with front/rear weight distribution.

Rotary engines are smoother running than non-rotary engines, especially 4 cylinder engines. That's because they rotate, not go up and down.

Yes, they consume a LOT more gasoline, but only if you compare them based on their displacement. If you compare them based on power, it aint that bad after all. The RX8 does 18-23 mpg, city-highway if I remember correctly. So that's a little worse than our CLS for a little less power.

Yes, they are known to be less reliable and they used to be terrible with emissions, but supposedly Mazda found a way to better the latter. And I am sure they have, because otherwise the gov't would not let them put this engine into mass production.

Bottom line, it's up to the buyer to decide if they like the rotary or not. I do believe that rotaries have a ton of potential which we might never see, because only Mazda is working to refine the rotary engine. As far as I know at least. If all, or most companies were puring R+D money into bettering the rotary engine, we'd see some really impressive results (from a performace standpoint at least).

Persoally? I dislike all engines that dont make good torque at low and mid range rpm, so I would never buy an RX8.
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Old 09-11-2003, 01:13 PM
  #34  
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Originally posted by soopa
it is pretty odd that a car with a shitload less moving parts then a regular engine uses supposedly more oil.


id still like to know the figures... what is the maintenance schedule?

It's not dependant on the number of moving parts. It's the way the rotary works. As it says in the article, a mist of oil is used to lubricate parts of the engine.
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Old 09-11-2003, 02:01 PM
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I was considering the RX-8, but my father and his friend a mechanic told me to stay FAR away. Based on their previous experience with rotary's, they insisted it would get horrible mileage and rotary engines have longetivity issues. I insisted that they fixed those issues, but seeing many RX-8 owners averaging 13mpg, I guess they didn't.

No thanks. I think Rotary is going to go the way of the do-do shortly.
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Old 09-11-2003, 04:33 PM
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With all this shit going on, I am sad I supported this car. It is close to being a POS now.. Damn. 350Z looking that much better..
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Old 09-11-2003, 05:29 PM
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this car will be gone with the quickness.
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Old 09-11-2003, 05:44 PM
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I think it has great potention if they could just iron out the issues...

First year of any new car goes through "similar" issues...
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Old 09-11-2003, 05:52 PM
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Originally posted by soopa
and like i said.... your supposed to check the oil in your CL at every (or every other) refueling anyway....
Am I the only one here who regularly checks their oil level? I checked it about 1x/week until the 7500 mile oil change (monitoring for break-in oil consumption). Now at about 17000 miles I still check all my fluid levels about 2 or 3 times per month (usually when I'm cleaning the car).

IMHO, there's nothing wrong about obsessiveness in fluid checks.

Oh, and like people have said, rotary engines are known for oil issues, by design. It doesn't make them unreliable. Checking the oil level takes what, 27 seconds? What's the BFD?


...and a pet peeve of mine has been hit several times in this thread. There is no word PREVENTATIVE. It is PREVENTIVE.
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Old 09-12-2003, 11:30 AM
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omg shut up you idiots.......

like i said this shows absolutely nothing.

it is simply a preventative maintenence suggestion IDENTICAL to that given by acura for the CL.


unless someone can show me this car is burning oil significantly faster than a normal engine or it requires frequent changes....... this dont mean shit!!!!!!!!!!!

haters.


(and im not even a fan of the RX8 but this is just wrongful slander)
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