Mazda unveiled today the RX-8 Spirit R, a special edition of its well-known four-door, four-seat rotary engine sports car. As expected, due to the fact that the production of the Mazda RX-8 will end in June 2012, the Spirit R will be the final edition and the Japanese manufacturer will build only 1,000 units. Based on the Mazda RX-8 Type RS (fitted with the six-speed manual transmission) and the Type E (with six-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission), the RX-8 Spirit R will come with stylish features that include exclusive seat design and colored alloy wheels.
Moreover, the vehicle will feature curtain and front side SRS airbag system, which is available as a factory-installed option on the base models, will be offered as standard equipment. With the addition of the new edition, the Mazda RX-8 lineup will consist of Spirit R and Type G (with six-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission) model grades only.
Some of the special equipment found on the Spirit R includes: exclusive Spirit R badge, front headlights, front fog lights and rear combination lights (with black bezels), front and rear red brake calipers, transmission tunnel trim (piano black), Recaro bucket seats and 19-inch alloy wheels painted in bronze for the manual transmission model.
For the automatic transmission model we find the leather seats (black with red stitching), leather-wrapped steering wheel (black with red stitching), parking brake lever (with red stitching), center console box front seat armrest and rear console box lid covered with synthetic leather (with red stitching), larger brakes and 18-inch alloy wheels painted in gun metallic.
Regarding the colors, the Mazda RX-8 Spirit R will be offered in three colors: Aluminum Metallic, Sparkling Black Mica and Crystal White Pearl Mica. Pricing starts at 3,250,000 Yen or $42,400 for the 6-Speed manual transmission model or 3,120,000 or $40,700 for the model fitted with an automatic transmission.
As expected, the new Mazda RX-8 is gifted with a more striking and sportier exterior, thanks to a series of design enhancements that allowed the car to retain its basic design theme. While its exterior styling allows the new RX-8 to don the appearance of a genuine sports car, it boasts of a comfortable and intelligently designed cabin inside. For instance, the new Mazda RX-8 features restyled front fascia with sporty headlamps as well as revised front and rear bumpers with athletic taillights.
The rear end is also marked by larger exhaust pipes measuring 90 mm across. The side profile of the new Mazda RX-8 is accentuated by new five-spoke wheels featuring a symbolic and sporty design that is peculiarly similar to a rotary engine. It is available in different wheel sizes, with each size boasting of different arrangements. Furthermore, the new Mazda RX-8 is laden with muscular lines, classic sports car proportions and the vaunted Zoom-Zoom edge.
Its distinctive "freestyle" four-door design demonstrates that a true sports car could still eke true performance even without compromising space or convenience. For example, the car’s rear-hinged rear doors boast of an advanced design that allows for a large door opening, thereby enabling easy ingress and egress even for adult passengers. Interestingly, the advanced design of the doors presents a number of benefits when a small child or a baby in the rear seats.
Moreover, the interior of the new Mazda RX-8 is spacious and versatile enough to seat four full-size adults in the rear cabin, to accommodate large cargo in the trunk. Inside the cabin, the new Mazda RX-8 now features a simple yet functional interior design.
Mazda redesigned the center IP shape to provide a feeling of dynamic movement and even added a variable red zone to the tachometer. This red zone rises as the engine comes to operating temperature. In addition, Mazda provided the new RX-8 with a new steering wheel as well as redesigned front and rear seats.
Thanks to the RX-8’s very low cabin floor, its seats were mounted low in the chassis. This positioning -- along with a low instrument cluster and hood – gives the RX-8 a low center of gravity and allows for remarkable occupant visibility.
Furthermore, the front seat backs and the rear seat cushions have been shaped to provide ample rear-seat knee room while the front seat slide-rails have been positioned to enable maximum leg room for those sitting in the rear cabin.