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Average User Score
4.5 ⁄ 5 stars
Based on 145 reviews
2004 Mazda RX-8 Overview
Overall User Score
Based on 145 reviews
When it was introduced in 2004, the RX-8 four-seat sport coupe was Mazda's first rotary-engined car since the RX-7 was discontinued
in 1995. And, in fact, the RX-8 was considered the successor to the RX-7, which was probably the most memorable and iconic car Mazda has ever made. Although the RX-8 hasn't generated the buzz that surrounded the RX-7, it's certainly a worthy 21st century standard-bearer of the RX name.
The RX-8 was powered by a small, super-lightweight rotary engine called the Renesi, which Mazda notes was smaller than the car's transmission. Yet in its first year, the 1.3-liter rotary engine produced 238 horsepower when the car was equipped with a standard six-speed manual transmission, and 197 horsepower when linked to a four-speed automatic transmission.
Mazda notes that the Renesis rotary engine has no pistons or valves, but instead consists only of two rotors and a crankshaft that continually rotate inside a housing to create combustion. As a result, the engine gives off a distinctive hum, rather than the typical sound of an internal combustion engine.
In its first year, the RX-8 was available as a solitary basic model. Standard features included power windows, power door locks, air conditioning, dual front and side airbags, cruise control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with a tilt column, steering-wheel-mounted controls, a tire pressure monitor, and an AM/FM stereo system with a CD player.
Fast, fun, comfortable, agile, and responsive, the RX-8 was a hit with most drivers. The car's styling was a bit controversial, with some thinking it looked good but others believing the car's styling could be improved. Some also noted that their cars needed too many repairs. But the fact that the RX-8 was a sports coupe that had the functionality of a sedan was one of its biggest selling points.
What's your take on the 2004 Mazda RX-8?
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