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Old 02-04-2008, 05:07 AM   #1
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Life is not always greener

Greetings all,
As some of you may recall - I left the Boxster fold about a year ago (2001 yellow 2.7 5 sp) for a new RX8 with a four year warranty. I had some vague fears of RMS, although never actually had any problems with the car at all except for the ignition switch that I replaced myself with the help of this forum.
Anyway, the RX8 is at the dealer as we speak, awaiting a new engine. The car has 5500 miles, CEL led to discovery of low compression in one side. Mazda solution is an engine swap, since they have centralized the repair of the rotary engines.
There's a decent forum for RX8'ers, their poll shows a nearly 20% engine swap rate of those who voted, although most were in the first year 2004.
Had a moment there where I missed the Box -
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Old 02-04-2008, 05:15 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by limoncello
Greetings all,
As some of you may recall - I left the Boxster fold about a year ago (2001 yellow 2.7 5 sp) for a new RX8 with a four year warranty. I had some vague fears of RMS, although never actually had any problems with the car at all except for the ignition switch that I replaced myself with the help of this forum.
Anyway, the RX8 is at the dealer as we speak, awaiting a new engine. The car has 5500 miles, CEL led to discovery of low compression in one side. Mazda solution is an engine swap, since they have centralized the repair of the rotary engines.
There's a decent forum for RX8'ers, their poll shows a nearly 20% engine swap rate of those who voted, although most were in the first year 2004.
Had a moment there where I missed the Box -
Mazda rotaries have had a very high failure rate since day one. Had a friend with a late 70's? mazda sedan rotary that failed very early. Have known several rx7 owners with very early engine failures (all body styles). If you look around at where the old cars are, they invariably are listed as "$400 needs new engine" in most ads. One guy I know had a 1993 rx7 that failed at around 40k miles and it was the hopped up version. Very expensive to fix and couldn't find anyone to work on it. Suugest selling before it comes off warranty. Mazdas in general don't hold there value as well as Honda and Toyota which is a downside also.
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Old 02-04-2008, 05:55 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saaber
Mazda rotaries have had a very high failure rate since day one. Had a friend with a late 70's? mazda sedan rotary that failed very early. Have known several rx7 owners with very early engine failures (all body styles). If you look around at where the old cars are, they invariably are listed as "$400 needs new engine" in most ads. One guy I know had a 1993 rx7 that failed at around 40k miles and it was the hopped up version. Very expensive to fix and couldn't find anyone to work on it. Suugest selling before it comes off warranty. Mazdas in general don't hold there value as well as Honda and Toyota which is a downside also.
No true. Mazda had problems with pre-Rx-7 rotary seals. Those engines tended to break seals easily. That and poor fuel economy caused a reputation problem for the rotary.

The 12a and 13b in the 1st and 2nd gen Rx-7s were just as reliable as any piston engine. There are hundreds of thousands of 20+ year old Rx-7s from 79-89 out on the road. I know, I have one that's running VERY strong. There's a HUGE rotary community in this country and others.

The twin-turbo 3rd gens are very susceptible to damage by an unskilled tuner/owner and even very minor modifications can significantly shorten engine life. Even so, they are probably pretty tired by 80,000 miles.

The new issues with the Renesis seem to be pretty wide spread. Unfortunately, most mechanics/technicians have always been afraid to work on these engines so repair work is expensive. I say unfortunately because this is probably one of the world's easiest engines to work on internally. There are only 3 moving parts! As for repair costs, they don't come anywhere close to that of a Porsche, any Porsche.

Last edited by blue2000s; 02-04-2008 at 06:19 AM.
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Old 02-04-2008, 06:11 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue2000s
No true. Mazda had problems with pre-Rx-7 rotary seals. Those engines tended to break seals easily. That and poor fuel economy caused a reputation problem for the rotary.

The 12a and 13b in the 1st and 2nd gen Rx-7s were just as reliable as any piston engine. There are hundreds of thousands of 10-20+ year old Rx-7s from 79-89 out on the road. I know, I have one that's running VERY strong. There's a HUGE rotary community in this country and others.

The twin-turbo 3rd gens are very susceptible to damage by an unskilled tuner/owner and even very minor modifications can significantly shorten engine life. Even so, they are probably pretty tired by 80,000 miles.

The new issues with the Renesis seem to be pretty wide spread. Unfortunately, most mechanics/technicians have always been afraid to work on these engines so repair work is expensive. I say unfortunately because this is probably one of the world's easiest engines to work on internally. There are only 3 moving parts! As for repair costs, they don't come anywhere close to that of a Porsche, any Porsche.
@ blue2000s

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Old 02-04-2008, 08:55 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by blue2000s
No true. Mazda had problems with pre-Rx-7 rotary seals. Those engines tended to break seals easily. That and poor fuel economy caused a reputation problem for the rotary.
.
Glad to see people have had better luck than what I have seen. I have known 4 people with rotaries and all were dead by 60k miles. So that is obviously a miniscule "sample size", but it is still 100% of those I have had experience with. Glad to see that others have had better luck with rotaries.
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:10 AM   #6
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I beat the hell out of my 1989 Mazda RX7-GTUs. The first motor had 189,000 miles on it when I had it rebuilt. It was still running great, but I was going to have to replace cats every two years to get it to pass smog, so I had it rebuilt.

When I sold the car last Summer, it was 18 years old, the re-built motor (about 6 years old) had about 45k miles on it and was running like a top.

That 2nd gen RX-7 (non turbo) was the most reliable machine of any kind I've ever owned. I haven't owned the Boxster long enough to form an opinion about its reliability.
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