Video surfaced on Tuesday of a thinly-disguised Mazda RX-8 on track at the Nürburgring. The reason for it being out there is a complete mystery, as it has been out of production for 7 years, and we’re all well aware of what the front bumper looks like under the wrap in the video.
This week we’re riding shotgun in Formula D competitor Mike Feiock’s Mazda RX-8 drift car at the No Star Bash 2015 at Gingerman Raceway. Mike’s rotary-powered RX-8 cranks out between 550 and 600 horsepower depending on the setup and tune he’s running on a particular day.
The Involvement Index Awards draw near, folks, in our upcoming issue of Winding Road. We’ve already brought you our most involving American cars, all-wheel-drive cars, and the overall most involving cars per dollar. Now it’s time to take a look at the highest-rated Asian cars that we’ve driven since the inauguration of the Winding Road Involvement Index 2.0.
In this issue of Winding Road, we get behind the wheel and see what a difference forced induction can make in the supercharged Lotus Evora S.
A weird thing happened the other day. We were messing around and looking at car discounts and deals online, when we stumbled upon the AOL Autos Best Deal tool. (No, AOL didn’t pay us to write this part; we just genuinely think they’ve got a cool thing going here.) The online tool allows you to search for “best deal” by showing cars in your area that are being offered for the most money off of the baseline MSRP. At the time, we’d just booked a one-week loan of a Mazda RX-8, so we took a look at what discounts were available for the car (one we’ve always been pretty fond of).
I’ll get it out of the way early; I prefer the original Mazdaspeed3 to this second-generation by a rather large margin. This car isn’t the same visceral indulgence that the original was. Everything has been numbed to a degree, including the first gen’s characteristic torque steer.
We were recently lucky enough to have Mazda’s RX-8 R3 in the Winding Road office for a week. Truly touched by the car’s utter brilliance for a relatively small sum of money, Editorial Director Tom Martin declared that he could justify the Mazda’s abilities versus any sporting car on sale today.
I remember that Mazda’s first ads for the CX-7 touted it as a cross between a sports car and an SUV. Allowing for some inevitable poetic license, I’d say those ads were at least half true.
The Mazda RX-8 continues to have us puzzled as to why more of these aren’t on the road. No, the rotary engine isn’t four-season friendly, and neither is the car’s rear-wheel-drive, but when the weather is right, the RX-8 really shines. For 2009, a re-worked exterior sports a slightly more aggressive fascia, and while our Grand Touring model doesn’t have all of the beefy visual add-ons found on the R3 (a new model for ’09), we still had a lot of fun throwing this Mazda into bends and revving the twin-rotor engine way up past 8000 rpm.