• Aug 24, 2006

In yet another installment of the Mazda RX-8 customer satisfaction drama, we can confirm that the manufacturer will announce a voluntary recall on 2004, 2005 and some 2006 model year RX-8s. Mazda has confirmed to us that owners will be receiving notices in the next month or so, as the company is doing a staggered roll-out across the country.


Mazda has also told us that the repairs needed for each RX-8 will vary based on tests performed by each dealer. Automotive News is reporting that each car will receivea vacu um test to check for oil leaks, and those vehicles suffering from sealing problems will receive new Renesis side-port rotary engines. Robert Davis, head of product development and quality at Mazda, told Automotive News that the company does not want dealers tearing into the engines, and instead will send the defective motors to its remanufacturing plant in North Carolina. Each vehicle will also receive a check of its starting system, as that supposedly has been problematic. Davis described the campaign as "white-glove treatment".

Mazda claims that the problem is brought on by hot climates or the usage of synthetic oil. If the oil is allowed into the combustion chamber, it eventually reaches the catalytic converter and causes a malfunction of that emissions-control device.

[Source: Rotary News]



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  • 46 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      I have a 2005 6 speed RX8. I have driven this car hard since day one. [July/05]. I have never had one problem with the car. It is a blast to drive. I get 3-4 good comments weekly on the car. The only down side to this car is the gas consumption. I love the car so much, that this does not concern me.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I think it would be neat if Mazda offered the 2.3L engine from the Mazda 3 as a "base" kind of thing in the RX-8 for the folks that are a little leary on doing the rotary engine and may just like the look of the car. But I guess that would kind of take the "RX" of the RX-8. Just seems like it would mabye sell more with a more mainstream engine, and of course always have the rotary in the lineup as well.
      • 8 Years Ago
      It is a great overall car, but has only had issues with it's motor. I wonder how many owners went and put in synthetic motor oil? I didn't learn this until later that rotaries should only use dino oil. Interesting point about running at higher revs.... that was also a problem on Nissan/Infiniti cars equipped with the SR20DE and automatics. Many owners with automatics ever drove the car hard leading to clogged oil tubes in the engine head. Just goes to show, you need to beat on the motor :)
      • 8 Years Ago
      "Where else can you get a great-handling, purpose-built sports car with a usable rear seat for $20,000?"

      Not from Mazda; the RX-8 starts at $27k.
      • 8 Years Ago
      No big deal, just about every car produced may be effected. Yikes.
      • 8 Years Ago
      PLEASE JUST SHOW MY FIRST NAME ON MY COMMENTS - THANKS
      Rene
      • 8 Years Ago
      Problems with the RX8 engine seem to be related to too little oil being injected (to save the seals) at certain RPM's, or too much gas (to keep cat temps down) which causes cat failure. Synthetic oil is going to be MAZDA's scape goat. I have owned two RX7's & 2004 RX8. Have used synthetic oil (after 3K brake in) for over 170K miles total miles. No seals or cat problems. The problems with some RX8 AT cars were engines running rich on gas, lean on oil injection, and shifting too early (can't get needed oil that high revs enjoys). This creates seals running dry, over time you loose compression. All the unburn oil & gas ends up killing the cat. The "Synthetic oil" is not to blame. Poor ECU flashes are to blame. MAZDA is the only one who writes the FLASH programs.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I was really hot for the RX-8 when it first came out, read about everything I could find on it, took it for a test drive, etc. I could pretty much quote the options prices, I knew so much about it. But then the reviews started coming in, and the service bulletins, etc. Mazda seems to make some really nice cars, but I'm definitely glad I didn't bite on the RX-8. What a failure.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Again, Mazda always does the right thing for their customers and I continue to think very highly of them for it.
      • 8 Years Ago
      For the price, you can't match the performance of this car. Fuel economy is not a selling point, neither is the constant oil requirement. But then hey, that's a sports car, if you own one, you know this. Besides, what 1.3litre engine can produce 300bhp - yes with turbo. There are 500bhp mods for this motor in Japan.

      I've already taken my car to the shop, and they gave me a clean bill because I never use synthetic oil... (Duh) I guess Mazda never made sports car manuals for dummies, other wise you would have more RX8s on the road and less domestic.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The rotary has done well in endurance racing and in experimental airplanes, and I think Mazda would be smart to see what some of these people are doing. Airplane engines typically run at 75% of redline continuously, compared to 30-40% in a typical sports car. The equivalent aircraft engine costs over $30,000 and displaces about 6 liters compared to Mazda's 1.3 liters. The Mazda is smoother, more economical, and can be totally replaced at less cost than a rebuild of a standard aircraft engine. Maybe they're marketing this engine in the wrong field.
      • 8 Years Ago
      At my local Mazda dealership here, only Mazda Master Technicians are allowed to work on the rotaries. Also, they used to have a Mazda Master Tech sit down with the customer buying the RX-8 and explain to them to do's and don'ts of rotary engine ownership. I don't know if they do that anymore. As one of the original Mazda dealerships in the U.S., they have had a long time to learn that teaching the owners about the rotary goes a long way, both for engine reliability and customer satisfaction.

      I had a first generation RX-7. I knew the do's and don'ts, never lugged the engine, and drove it like I stole it. That car never gave me problems other than having to replace the power hatch release switch and replacing the thermostat at 135,000 miles. The rotary is not for conservative drivers who never want to open the hood. Rotaries are happiest when driven hard and when the redline is visited often.
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