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Old 12-01-2004, 04:12 PM
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Mazda Makes Extreme Move with RX-8 Motorsport Concept








The Mazda RX8 Motorsport Concept
was unveiled by singer Guy Sebastian
at the Australian International Motor Show.







9th October, 2004










Mazda Australia today unveiled the first of its “extreme cars”, a turbocharged RX-8 Motorsport Concept, at the Australian International Motor Show in Sydney. And removing the cover was none other than Guy Sebastian, one of the nations favourite singers.

The “extreme” RX-8, which was conceived by Mazda Australia’s motor sport manager Allan Horsley, is powered by a turbocharged and intercooled rotary engine that is expected to develop about 270 kilowatts of power and close to 350Nm of torque.

The car also features 19-inch wheels and tyres, a high performance racing brake package, retuned suspension and Mazdaspeed body kit parts for a more aggressive look.

Mazda Australia’s “extreme car” programme was prompted by new managing director, Doug Dickson.

“The idea of this programme is to challenge our corporate imagination and in this case we have developed a faster, more aggressive, motor sport version of the RX-8”, Dickson said.

“This one-off concept further demonstrates the strength, integrity and ability of the production RX-8 because the fundamentals of this concept remain true to the standard car”.

Motor sport manager, Allan Horsley, said: “The RX-8 Motorsport Concept was a must do challenge for us and thanks to the engineering sophistication of the production car it all came together in just a few months.

“We plan to give some of the motoring media with racing experience the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of our labour at a track day drive event”.

Future Mazda “extreme car” projects will not necessarily focus on the company’s class-leading sports cars or on its award-winning passenger models.

“The idea behind ‘extreme cars’ is not just added acceleration and all that goes with that formula. An idea could involve any present Mazda model.

We have, for example, discussed an extreme B Series, that would showcase its comfort, refinement and off-road ability”, Dickson said.

The RX-8 Motorsport Concept makes its intentions known with an aggressive looking Mazdaspeed nose with integrated spoiler and big air intake as well as a large and adjustable Mazdaspeed rear wing.

Velocity Red mica metallic paint and attention grabbing white “GT stripes” run along the car’s sides, while bonnet flutes further hint at the car’s added performance and aid under bonnet cooling.

Riding on striking white-painted, 19x8-inch alloy wheels, the concept features different tyre sizes front and rear. 235/35 tyres are used on the front wheels and larger 255/35 tyres on the rear, helping deliver the concept’s prodigious power and torque to the road. The production RX-8 boasts 18x8 alloy wheels and 225/45 tyres.

A centre-mounted rotary-shaped brake lamp completes the strong visual statement made by the RX-8 Motorsport Concept.

The car’s revised suspension, which drops the ride height by 25mm, improves the standard car’s class leading dynamics and adds to the concept’s visual impact.

Suspension modifications focus on new specification, stiffer Eibach springs that help improve the already impressive grip offered by the RX-8’s multi-link front and rear suspension.

The revised suspension settings, which help reduce body roll, further sharpen responses from the car’s electric-driven rack and pinion steering.

Promising considerably more power and torque than the standard car, the RX-8 Motorsport Concept features a Renesis rotary engine complete with a water cooled Garret turbocharger running 7.5lbs of boost pressure and a large air-to-air intercooler.

These modifications and a re-programmed Power Control Module that maximises the engine’s efficiency are expected to boost power by more than 52 per cent over the production RX-8.

The engine’s pulling power, or torque, receives a substantial boost over a wide rev band, with it peaking about 350Nm, an increase of almost 65 per cent over the road car.

Using a relatively small and low-boost turbo ensures good throttle response and maintains the free-revving nature of the road car’s normally aspirated rotary engine.

The RX-8 Motorsport Concept’s compression ratio and redline are unaffected, allowing the turbo engine to race to 9000rpm.

A larger, free-breathing exhaust system ensures maximum power gain while a new muffler also aids breathing and delivers a throatier, more purposeful exhaust note.

Braking is by an Alcon six piston racing system that features 335mm vented and grooved discs. Similar systems are used in world rally, Japanese GT, V8 Supercar and NASCAR racing.

Other mechanical upgrades include a smaller but more powerful battery, while a larger core radiator ensures the engine runs within its ideal temperature range under all conditions.

The RX-8 Motorsport Concept shares Mazda’s new-look Australian International Motor Show stand with the Ibuki near future concept roadster, which was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show last year. Mazda will also showcase its full range of new generation cars - the Mazda 2, Mazda 3 and Mazda 6.

The Australian International Motor Show at Darling Harbour, Sydney, is open from 7th October to 17th October 2004.




Mazda RX-8 Motorsport Concept Main Specifications

Engine
Type 1.3-litre, Renesis rotary engine with a water-cooled Garrett GT 30 ball bearing turbo running 7.5lbs boost, PWR intercooler and radiator

Maximum power 270kW (target)
Maximum torque 350Nm (target)
Exhaust Big bore, three-inch main pipe, sports muffler

Transmission
Type 6-speed manual

Suspension
Suspension front Double wishbones with Eibach springs, mono tube shock absorbers and torsion bar stabilisers

Suspension rear Multi-link with Eibach springs, mono tube shock absorbers and torsion bar stabilisers
Brakes
Type front/rear 335mm Alcon six-piston callipers, ventilated and grooved directional discs
Steering
Type Electric power assist rack and pinion

Wheels and Tyres
Tyres front 235/35
Tyres rear 255/35
Wheels 19 X 8

Other
Mazdaspeed nose cone and adjustable rear wing, fluted bonnet, centre-mounted rear brake lamp, white "GT" stripes
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