2009 Mazda RX-8 (R3 Sport Package)

Posted on 29. Sep, 2008 by in Auto News

It never fails. When my friend introduced me people at parties, I hear the same nine words: "Dude, you have the best job in the world." And it's true. I've driven some of these planets finest, fastest and most deeply addicted automobiles. But for every Audi RS4, there is a Suzuki XL7. And a MINI Cooper Clubman S (believe me, it's pathetic). True, sometimes I am, how much I like a car surprised the Pontiac G8 GT to mind. And sometimes my socks are completely blown away by my feet as they were last week by a special edition Mazda RX-8, the R3.

I'm telling you in advance that not the Mazda RX-8 R3 is for everyone. Like any modern Mazda, the company is Nagare (River?) Design language creeps in. This makes the "sporty front spoiler" that look unique in the R3 package as a demonic Pokemon. You also get a rear spoiler. I think the exterior treatment randomly WiKKiD looks awesome killer cool. But I understand why some people on the 18th of age May not. At least we can all agree that ditching the RX-8 is ridiculous triangular anus of the best train in the years Mazda has made.

I could see the RX-8 "s home in the best make in 10 minutes with a crowbar goes out and the goofy stereo, most of the crummy plastic and the useless rear seats But here's the good part:.. Every surface including actual ride is almost perfect, if not actually so. The leather wrapped steering wheel, my new best friend. The six-speed manual (only tranny on the R3!) Must not be a snick-snick perfect as the Miata, but it's damn close. And you will not find a better dead pedal on any car. I'm too fat for the Japanese racing Recaros. But hey, I should lose 25 pounds (although I still fat).

All RX-8 now with a brilliant new 1.3-liter RENESIS two-rotor Wankel engine, which is good for 232 hp and 159 lb-ft torque come. If that does not sound like much to you, you've never driven a Wankel. You do not dial to pull strip where their apparent lack of torque a handicap. Take turning cars on the tracks, where a 9,000 rpm redline and humongous usable rev range means you can leave the car in third and forget about winning it 'til you the race. That's essentially what I did during the carving through some of the most beautiful canyons of LA.

Like all of the R3 RX Mazda motor forward drive of the rear wheels. There are no performance compromises. Up until this weekend the EVO X MR was the best handling car I have ever tested. But remember: the mighty EVO begins life as a humble FWD eco box before Mitsubishi there is a makeover with fancy computers and even fancy mechanicals. Clearly, so that the Active Yaw Control and twin clutches in the rear half of the best waves ever EVO running on roads faster than the RX-8 (or the most exotic). But among all the tricks of the Mitsubishi still is an erect, upper middle-class family car. The RX-8 R3, on the other hand is a sports car first, second and last.

Mazda claims that everything they did to manipulate the R3 handling on less RX-8, a set of Bilstein's, 19 "forged wheels and a urethane foam injected front suspension cross member (whatever that is) was comparable. But you know what? The results are mind-altering. The R3 is with traction control that I had on for maybe 30 seconds. You simply do not need. not give you the car break. I tried very hard to do so, and with the exception of manufacturing childish donuts in a parking lot, the R3 simply not give grip.

The R3 feels like you are driving a closed cockpit race car, let's say a Lotus Se7en with a hardtop and decent AC. With a view over the hood, I kept expecting to see an open wheels. Words such as begin "immediately" and "communicative" not to do the intuitive control justice. Each crank the wheel and tug-total results, benign compliance. One caveat: the ride is extremely harsh, brutal even. But the teeth are chattering suspension is on the R3 suited the nature perfectly.

And here's the cincher: $ 32k. For the same price as the aforementioned terrible MINI Cooper Clubman S, you can use one of the world's best handling sports car. Do not get me wrong. I'm not saying that the RX-8 R3 also handles 32k for a $ car. I say it handles better than a $ 320k car. Or, more importantly, what are you doing.

Mazda provided the vehicle reviewed, insurance and a tank of gas.