A Brief Look at the Mazda RX-8

Mazda RX-8 Picture

Mazda RX-8 is a unique sports car that was launched in 2003 after the success of both RX-7 and RX-1. The RX-8 is a four-door model and powered by a rotary engine that provides high performance and improved fuel efficiency than traditional piston engines. The production of the Mazda RX-8 came to an end in 2012, but it still remains a popular sports car among car enthusiasts. The following is an in-depth article on the history and evolution of the Mazda RX-8 vehicle.

First Generation (2003-2008)

The Mazda RX-8 made its debut at the 2003 North American International Auto Show and was launched later that year. The car was powered by a 1.3-liter Renesis two rotor engine that produced 247 horsepower and 164 lb-ft of torque. The RX-8 was offered in two trim levels – the base and the Grand Touring. They both came with a six-speed manual gearbox, but the Grand Touring came with additional features such as leather seats and Bose sound system.

Mazda introduced the innovative four-door design to the RX-8, which made it unique compared to other sports cars in the market. The car had suicide doors similar to how the RX-7 was designed. The RX-8 had a 50:50 weight distribution that improved its handling, and it could reach 0-60 mph in just 6.2 seconds.

The RX-8 underwent a facelift in 2006 that brought about a few changes to both the exterior and interior. The new RX-8 had a redesigned front and rear bumper, which gave it a more aggressive look. It received a six-speed automatic gearbox as an option for the first time. Also, Mazda improved the stability control system and added a limited slip differential.

Second Generation (2009-2012)

In 2009, Mazda introduced the second-generation RX-8, with a minor facelift. The new RX-8 had a slightly upgraded engine that produced 232 horsepower and 159 lb-ft of torque. The car was still available in two trims – the Sport and Grand Touring. The Sport trim level was equipped with 18-inch wheels, sport-tuned suspension, and a limited slip differential. The Grand Touring trim came with additional features such as a sunroof, heated seats, and a navigation system.

Mazda made a significant change in the second generation by improving its fuel efficiency. The RX-8 was fitted with an updated engine management system, which improved its fuel economy from 16 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway to 16 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway. The car came with a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic gearbox.

Special Editions

Throughout the years, Mazda introduced several special edition models of the RX-8. These models had unique features and came in limited numbers.


The Mazda RX-8 Shinka was introduced in 2005. It came with a more aggressive exterior that included a front spoiler and alloy wheels. The car had unique interiors that included sand-colored leather buckets and chrome trim. The Shinka was powered by the same Renesis two rotor engine and 6-speed manual gearbox.


The Mazda RX-8 Yamaha was launched in 2004 and was made in memory of Mazda’s partnership with Yamaha. The car was powered by the same Renesis engine and came with five-speed automatic transmission. It featured a Brilliant Black exterior and unique five-spoke aluminum alloy wheels. The Yamaha came equipped with special exhaust tips and front and rear spoilers.

Velocity Red Mica

The Mazda RX-8 Velocity Red Mica was introduced in 2006. The car came with a unique red exterior that had a vibrant finish. The Velocity Red Mica featured a rear spoiler, 18-inch alloy wheels, and a sport-tuned suspension. The special edition was powered by the same 1.3-liter rotary engine and was available with both six-speed manual or automatic gearbox.

40th Anniversary

In 2007, Mazda celebrated its 40th anniversary, and to commemorate the event, it introduced a special edition Mazda RX-8. The car had 18” wheels, black leather seats with red stitching, and a power sunroof. The special edition model featured a unique Metropolitan Grey Mica exterior color with smoked taillights and sport-tuned suspension. The RX-8 40th Anniversary Model was only available with a six-speed manual gearbox.

RunBidSell Insights

The Mazda RX-8 was a unique sports car that offered high performance and fuel economy. Its rotary engine was a unique innovation that made it stand out from other sports cars in the market. The car underwent several facelifts throughout its production years, introduced a few special edition models, and was available in two trims every year. While the RX-8 production has come to an end, it still remains a popular choice among car enthusiasts. The innovative technology and design of the Mazda RX-8 will always remain a part of automotive history.


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