Gregor Marshall said:
I'd head over to Mazda Rotary Club or the RX8 owners club.
Thank you, the RX8 Owners Club has been great, really put my mind to rest on all the horror stories and certainly no worse than any other car.
I'm definitely smitten, just need to work out the MPG implications as the official figures are pretty bad, but I want to talk to someone who has used one how I plan to - I currently have a v70 T5 and MPG is a little worse officially.
Resale value is not an issue as it's not that expensive to begin with, plus if they are as good as described I can't see my wanting to get rid of for a while and whe I do I wouldn't expect it to fetch a lot.
The Owners Club is a great place for info and help, although there are a couple of over passionate members who seem to think the RX-8 created mankind the world.
Just use your head, make sure you do all the checks and buy something worth buying.
MPG is an issue though. While the RX-8 isn't slow, it's not built for drag races either and at lower rpms it's not as quick as many lesser cars. Keep it in the powerband and it'll go as well as any other 230hp vehicle of similar weight.
The downer is, 230hp is not a lot these days and it's really not a lot for ~20mpg. I've looked up and studied mpg on RX-8's many times and this is what I've gleaned:
-Driving them hard and using the revs is not only good for the engine, but actually doesn't use more fuel. Unlike most piston engines that can get good mpg when driven gently and drop a lot when hooned. The RX-8 stays fairly consistent. This is good as there is no money reason for you not to enjoy the performance!
-Fuelly lists the RX-8 as around 20-21mpg average. However that is only the MEAN average. 15-18mpg does indeed seem quite possible from them. And while some claim upto 25mpg, I'm not sure that's what everyone could attain or expect. To be on the safe side if you work out your fuel budget on 18-20mpg then you'll more than likely be ok and maybe even surprised if it does better. If you work on a higher mpg and it does less, then you'll have left yourself short.
-Sadly 230hp for 20mpg isn't great in this day and age. For example I own a 5.7 litre V8 in a bigger car with a lot more power and a lot faster and it manages around 24mpg average. But this is where you need to understand what the RX-8 is. Don't buy it if you want a fast in a straight line car. As I said it's not slow, but it's not the quickest either and certainly not when you factor in fuel costs. The RX-8 is about a balanced chassis and handling, while offering up 4 seats and a boot. Buy it for those reasons and you'll be fine.
Gregor Marshall said:
What would you suggest instead?
Good question - any ideas anyone?
I'm just after something that looks good, goes and handles well, has okayish MPG and doesn't cost a bomb to buy - dreaming I know!!
The RX-8 is quite unique in what it offers. There are alternatives, but not a direct replacement.
You can still buy RX-7's for good money. The Turbo FD ones are very quick too. More raw, lighter and arguably a more thrilling car. But probably not as livable daily and certainly not as practical.
In the £2.5-3.5k price range there are plenty of fast hatches, coupes and saloons. Many of which can out gun an RX-8. But few that offer the same blend of RWD balance, handling and seating practicality.
A DC2 ITR would be in budget, but older and less comfy. And not any quicker (maybe slightly slower). Not that much better on fuel either (~28mpg). Sweet handling, but FWD.
FTO's, similar to the ITR but cheaper and not quite as good.
If you want RWD then it limits choice to BMW's, classics such as a V6 TVR or modded Triumph/MGB type of thing or maybe something like a Nissan 200SX or a Starion. All will be older than the RX-8 and possibly no better. My own car a 3.5 litre TR7 V8 has around 230hp, weighs slightly less than than an RX-8, gets similar mpg and is of similar pace (maybe slightly quicker). But it's a lot older, just as fickle, not as comfy or refined and only seats 2.
The RX-8 is a good car, just know what you are buying and why you are buying it