The RX-8 is not out to impress your friends with its looks, but it can. The RX-8 is not meant to carry you, your spouse and your two kids to grandma's house, but it can. The RX-8 was not conceived to spend every weekend on a track, but it can. The RX-8 should not be a comfortable enough vehicle to be driven on a daily basis, but it can. In fact, the RX-8 can be a great many things this type of car should typically not be, but it is.
|Where the RX-8 fails and excels is in its ability to be versatile. (Photo: Matthieu Lambert/Auto123.com)
Everyone knows that the RX-8 replaced the RX-7 in 2003. Replaced is a strong word as the RX-7 had become an affordable supercar capable of blistering performance and with serious tuneable firepower. The RX-8, then, is more of a spiritual successor, in a sense. The RX-7
was a track star and the RX-8 is also, running in such series as the SCCA World Challenge and GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series. Where the RX-8 fails and excels is in its ability to be versatile. Such a sporty car should not have four doors and be able to carry as many passengers.
It's a really odd deal. But, it works!
Styled with purpose
The RX-8 was the first of the modern Mazdas to usher in the new face of the Japanese brand. Its oversized slopping front fenders and curvaceous haunches became the inspiration for the next MX-5, CX-7
, to name but a few. Certainly, the car's extra suicide doors do hamper the smooth profiled progression of the roofline. The RX-8 may not have the sleek silhouette of the 370Z or the Genesis Coupe, however its unique design does make it stand out in the crowd, whether you like it or not.
As the title of this review states, I drove a GT and not an R3. What is an R3 you ask? The R3 is physically and dynamically the hottest RX-8 with skirts, hot alloys and a rear spoiler a modified 1995 Honda Civic owner would be proud of. Above and beyond that, it's a pair of Recaro perches that make all the difference in the world, mine anyways.
|The RX-8 may not have the sleek silhouette of the 370Z, however its unique design does make it stand out in the crowd. (Photo: Matthieu Lambert/Auto123.com)