EDITORS NOTEBOOK: 2008 Mazda RX 8 40th Anniversary Ed,Day 3

Read Phil Floraday’s comments on driving the 2008 Mazda RX-8 40th Anniversary Edition.

I haven’t driven an RX-8 in about a year, and I can’t say I really missed the experience. Yes, the car revs to the heavens and the chassis is great. No, there isn’t any torque. None at all. I suppose all 1.3-liter engines are down on torque, but I found the car to be useless in traffic. Even worse, the peak torque is at 5500 rpm. Then you’ve got the ridiculous consumption of both high test fuel and oil.

I like the idea of a rotary engine, but I got sick of having to drop 2-3 gears to pass other cars on two lane roads. I would gladly trade a bit of torque for some better fuel economy and the ability to rev to 9,000 rpm, but this car doesn’t offer torque or fuel economy. Again, the chassis is great and the interior is quite pleasant, but this car isn’t a lot of fun for daily driving.