Recall Alert: 2003-04 Mazda6, 2004 RX-8


Vehicles Affected: More than 18,000 model-year 2003-04 Mazda6 cars and model-year 2004 RX-8 sports cars

The Problem: A defect in the passenger side frontal airbag may produce excessive internal pressure, causing the inflator to rupture upon deployment of the device; metal fragments could strike and seriously injure occupants. This latest action is an expansion of a 2013 recall related to the ongoing problem with airbag systems manufactured by Japan's Takata Corp., a major world supplier of the devices, involving numerous automakers.

The Fix: Mazda will begin notifying owners in August, and dealers will replace the defective airbag inflator for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Mazda at 800-222-5500, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

More Recalls

By Matt Schmitz | July 25, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: Airbag Problem Affects Millions of Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Mazda Vehicles


Four Japanese automakers — Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Mazda — have announced a voluntary recall of 3 million vehicles worldwide because of possibly faulty airbags; more than a million of those vehicles are in the U.S.

According to the automakers, the problem lies in the front-passenger airbag inflator, which in affected vehicles could deploy with too much pressure due to improperly manufactured propellant wafers, causing the inflator casing to rupture. This could result in injuries to passengers, though none have been reported. The airbags were manufactured by Japan's Takata Corp., a major world supplier of airbags.

According to Toyota, affected vehicles in the U.S. include 510,000 Toyota Corolla compact sedans, Matrix compact hatchbacks, Sequoia SUVs and Tundra pickup trucks, as well as Lexus SC 430 sport coupes, all manufactured between 2001 and 2003. According to news reports, Toyota is recalling 1.7 million vehicles worldwide.

Toyota said it will notify owners by mail. Dealers will inspect the front-passenger airbag; if it is equipped with an affected inflator, the inflator will be replaced with a new one for free. Toyota owners can go to or call Toyota customer service at 800-331-4331; Lexus owners can go to or call Lexus customer service at 800-255-3987.

By Matt Schmitz | April 11, 2013 | Comments (6)

Mazda Plans New RX-7 for 2017

Although Mazda's RX-8 sports coupe was discontinued after 2011, the automaker is already planning its successor. According to Left Lane News, Mazda is resurrecting the RX-7 name for a new lightweight sports coupe. Don’t get too excited, though; it likely won’t be on sale until 2017.

Like the RX-8 and the original RX-7 (model-year 2001 pictured), which was canceled in 2002, the new version will use a rotary engine. Left Lane is reporting that it will use Mazda's next-generation 1.6-liter rotary engine. Horsepower is estimated at 300.

According to Mazda engineers, the car will use a lot of aluminum, making it as lightweight as its main competitors: the Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ. The two-seat coupe will likely be based off of the next-generation MX-5 Miata platform, Left Lane reports.

Mazda told Left Lane that the car's price will fall between Nissan's sports coupes, which doesn't say much. Topline versions of the 2013 370Z start at $43,810 and the GT-R starts at $97,820 (all prices include a destination charge). In its final year, the Mazda RX-8 had an MSRP of $26,795, meaning the next RX-7 will be much more expensive by comparison.  

The automaker has not returned our request for comment.

New Mazda RX-7 to Launch by 2017 (Left Lane News)
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By Jennifer Geiger | November 5, 2012 | Comments (5) Reviews the 2011 Mazda RX-8

2011 Mazda RX-8 The 2011 Mazda RX-8 is certainly a rare breed, and it’s going extinct fast because Mazda recently announced that the model has been discontinued. The RX-8 is the last car powered by a rotary engine, an odd engine that has captured the hearts of many enthusiasts for decades. Still, oddity isn’t necessarily a good thing: The RX-8’s small-yet-powerful engine doesn’t make the car feel fast, and its fuel economy is about as poor as some full-size trucks and SUVs, says editor Mike Hanley.

2011 Mazda RX-8 Review

By Colin Bird | September 30, 2011 | Comments (3)

Mazda RX-8 Officially Discontinued

2011 Mazda RX-8The 2011 Mazda RX-8 will be the last model year for this iconic sports car, according to Mazda spokesman Jeremy Barnes. He said production of the model has already ceased, meaning whatever is left at dealerships is likely what’s left of new RX-8 inventory. (We count 219 new RX-8s nationally on

There’s no word on whether Mazda will bring an RX successor; the RX-8 replaced the RX-7 here in 2002. Along with the Miata, the RX played a key role in forming Mazda’s “Zoom-Zoom” identity. The RX-8 featured a standard high-revving rotary engine — the only car in the U.S. that had such a configuration.  If the RX-8 is not replaced, that could very well mean the end of Wankel rotary engines in this country. The automaker has been building rotary-powered cars since the 1960s.

The RX-8 was certainly a rare breed here. The car had a low-slung appearance, but it was rather accommodating with its hidden rear-hinged doors. Unfortunately, the rotary engine had pretty odd characteristics that might put off some car buyers. And its fuel economy was lousy.

Mazda has only sold 544 RX-8s so far in 2011, down 20.8% from 2010.

2011 Mazda RX-8 Video

By Colin Bird | August 24, 2011 | Comments (10)

2011 Mazda RX-8 Video

The Mazda RX-8 is an unusual player in the sports-car field. The car sports a high-revving rotary engine, a rarity for the U.S. Besides the exotic under-the-hood technology, this low slung sports car makes a good attempt at accommodating rear passengers and cargo. Unfortunately, many might not like the rotary powertrain’s characteristics or its fuel economy, says editor Mike Hanley.

By Colin Bird | July 12, 2011 | Comments (2)

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