Mazda RX-8 To Be Discontinued In US Market

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer
mazda rx 8 to be discontinued in us market

With the Mazda RX-8 being pulled from the European marke t for its rotary engine’s inability to pass the new Euro-5 emissions standard, we should have guessed that its days were numbered in the US market as well. Perhaps the fact that the model is one of our favorite enthusiast options available in the US made us hope against hope that it would soldier on a bit longer. No such luck. According to Motor Trend‘s “well placed source at Mazda’s North American Operations,” the RX-8 will be phased out “most likely after the 2011 model year.” And probably not just for the obvious fuel economy or capacity-utilization reasons either: RX-8 sales peaked at 23,690 units in 2004, and have been in steady decline ever since, moving only 2,217 units last year.

But, the MT guys remind us that we shouldn’t give up all hope just yet:

Does this mean Mazda is giving up on rotaries? No. Remember that North American sales of the RX-7 ceased in 2002, a full two years before the RX-8 made its debut. Mazda’s market-by-market wind down of RX-8 sales may indicate a shift of resources towards the long rumored return of the RX-7.

Here’s hoping Mazda comes back with a worthy successor in 2013.

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  • AnalogMan AnalogMan on May 07, 2010

    Thanks texlovera, I appreciate it.

  • 05RX8GT 05RX8GT on Jun 04, 2010

    People always amaze me with the type of generalizations they make about the whole while focusing on only one part. I was at a car show once, and this guy was looking at a 600hp beautifully modified Supra Turbo, and says to the owner… "anything less than 700 hp is a joke"…. and walks away. I'm just thankful that I do not suffer from the same "mashedpotato brainitis". I like Carnick's post though. Well done, and very well articulated. "rx8" seems to understand the car very well too. But from RGS920, twotone, Jackalope30, mtymsi, etc... good grief. What a bunch of ridiculous, senseless, idiotic comments. Here's the deal. The RX8 has a Monstrous following that is fiercely loyal. You think perhaps there's a good reason for that? It is no secret that the Mazda engineers were not able to make the Renesis engine sip fuel like a Prius. But, as noted in earlier comments, IT'S A SUPREMELY WELL BALANCED, BACK ROAD CARVING, TRACK CORNER EATING, SPORTS MACHINE!!! Helllllloooooooooooo????? Oh, and by the way... the RX8 is a pure joy to drive around town too. I owned a 2005 RX8 Grand Touring. Gunmetal Grey with Saddleback (orange) leather interior. It was straight up AWESOME!! Everyone loved it. So unique. So innovative. That rotary engine is the epitome of smooth acceleration force. It BEGS you to rev. It BEGS you to wind it up. It's roomy, practical, solid, fast, and super smooth. And let me tell you... EVERYONE loved the way it looked. Never ever once did I hear anything but high praise from anyone who saw it. The number one complaint here… the number one kicker… is… gasp... GAS MILEAGE!!!??? wow. a few bucks here and there. Big deal. Forget the gas mileage. How about the machine! As for turbo, Mazda tried (and they did actually). The problem is not that the Renesis cannot support a turbo. It certainly can. Just punch in "turbo RX8" on youtube. No, no, no. The problem is Green Haired Tree Hugging Activists that put such tight restrictions on emissions that Mazda had a tough time meeting the standards while still managing to meet the ever mounting critical demands of their target market. There are solutions for both of the "issues" that people have complained about here. 1. Want more power? Have a professional shop install a turbo. Here's a link for a kit that's good for 326whp (about 380 HP). 2. Want to not be concerned at all about gas mileage? Make more money and it won't matter. It's not Mazda's fault you're broke. Here is the one complaint I ever had with the RX8 (and it wasn't even "my" complaint). Sometimes people who are sitting in the front passenger seat complained of a slightly protruding bump next to their left foot in the floor, which kinda sorta compromised leg room. That's about it. Pretty minor I'd say. Why do I no longer own mine? I switched to a 2008 Mazdaspeed3 GT. And I loved that too, until I sold it too! haha. I would DEFINITELY consider buying another RX8 though. What a great car! Here are a few pics of mine. Exterior Interior :)

  • 05RX8GT 05RX8GT on Jul 20, 2010

    I just found another company that makes a strong kit for the 8. You can easily run with the big boys with one of these babies installed! :)