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Pros: the look of the exterior
Cons: the feel of the ride
Advice: Would be concerned that this vehicle would hold any value.The sporty look is very appealing but the inside interior is cheap and the ride is as well. The AT is so slow - don't think you should be pentalized for wanting not to shift. The color selection of this vehicle is good - nice range. But the price doesn't match the quality.
Pros: Wonderfully inovative body style. Response in the 4K to 8K power band
Cons: Waiting for it since March
Advice: See and drive this car in person, no literature I saw or read did it justice.I bought the car sight unseen, based on a lot of research and review in many car magazines. There were just too many reputable test drivers raving over it for me to pass up getting one as soon as possible. The car was delayed about a month over my initial 4 month wait, and my expectations grew higher the longer I was without it. Finally received my winning blue RX8 with the grand touring option package, and have since put 1200 miles on it in three weeks. I am both happy and suprised that it has exceeded all of my lofty expectations. The handling is fantastic. The power and response makes it a joy to drive. I wake up looking forward to driving it, I go to sleep thinking of where I'm going to drive it next. I'm 45 years old and have had quite a few cars, and I have never experienced this kind of driving excitement. Test drove everything in its class, and above its class, while I was waiting for it to arrive. Glad I waited. I'm 6'3' and fit perfectly in the drivers seat, don't personally know about the others. My wife is 5'4' and my son is 6'2' and they enjoy the ride in the back seats. They are starting to flow into some dealers, put this test drive on your list. You won't regret it. ZOOM, ZOOM.
Pros: the looks
Cons: little to small
Advice: second Mitia for metest drive was better than my 1997 mazda mitia, i can feel and see the difference made to improve this vehile
Pros: Sharp Shifter
Cons: Turbo Lag
Advice: Check SRT-4 firstOn this day, I tested a variety of 2003 'Hot Rods' in the $20K and under price range: the Mazdaspeed turbo Protege, the Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V, and the Hyundai Elantra 5 door GT. (listed in order of my favorite) I currently drive a 2001 Nissan Maxima and am looking for something with flatter handling, better economy, and just plain more fun. The Mazdaspeed fits all my requirements, including a solid factory stereo w/sub. It's the quickest of the 3 but you must wait for the turbo. Best feature is the shifter that you flick into gear and never miss. The Spec-V has awesome handling and feels like you can race it right off the lot. The engine is torquey and pulls hard but not as snappy as the turbo. The upgrade Rockford system is thunderous. HOWEVER, I could not tolerate the shifter, missed several shifts and was ultimately dissappointed. The Hyundai is absolutely pitiful. I enjoy driving my 1986 Trooper w/240K miles and a tired engine more. If you must have a new car and only have $10, don't. This car wallows, accelerates slow, and every part of it is made in the same factory that makes Happy Meal toys. Conclusion: My Max is still number one even after 2.5 years and 33K miles. The power is always there, even going 80 to 100 on a 2-lane, up hill. You simply cannot surpass a legendary V-6 like the Maxima. The room, quiet, comfort all pamper you. BUT I want more fun in a car, something darty so will keep testing. Next up: Toyota Matrix XRS, Dodge Neon SRT-4, Subaru WRX.
Cons: No Cruise (not even an option)
Advice: If your just looking for all out power don't buy it. If you want a car that will out handle that Vet in the lane next to you, get it.I had driven all the comparable cars but this one is the complete package. The engine may not be the strongest of the group (it has the lowest HP on paper of the group). But the handling, interior and fit and finish were amazing. Its fast when it needs to be but the best part is no matter how fast your going you can take a corner at that speed. (p.s. Look hard at the 03.5, it has no fog lamps and a diffrent rear spoiler. It takes away from the uniqueness of the car.
Pros: hassle free car
Cons: replace the muffler
Advice: drive one.Red 2002 LS ground package 1. Six speed of pure fun. This car is a real head turner, looks much cooler than most cars that cost much more.
Pros: The sheer power and speed. It's got a torque buck to it, but as long as you're aware it's just all the more satisfying.
Cons: The color accenting on the inside, and the choice of exterior colors.
Advice: Get it quick! There's only 2000 being released in the US and 2/3rds of those are spicy orange.I just got my black mazdaspeed and I absolutely love it. The Orange is a beautiful color, but just not for me. It's got a bit more sparkle then the black, however. The interior is really sharp, I was hoping on all silver like the orange model, but instead there are brown accents on the steeringwheel and a few other areas, but silver most everywhere else. It handles like butta, stops on a dime, and there's a real sturdy hold on the road. Drives wonderfully, my dream car!