2005 Mazda RX-8 SHINKA Special Edition

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(from Mazda Press Release)  Coinciding with the opening of the 2005 Chicago Auto Show, Mazda today announced its RX-8 "SHINKA" Special Edition is now available at local Mazda dealers. The Mazda RX-8 "SHINKA" Special Edition takes its name from the Japanese word meaning "evolution" or "transformation," and adds design style and performance to the highly successful sportscar. Only 2,150 "SHINKA" Special Edition cars will be produced.

"We’ve taken the RX-8 – a car already lauded by customers and media alike – to a new level of sophistication and exclusivity with the ‘SHINKA’ Special Edition," said Weldon Munsey, RX-8 vehicle line manager for Mazda North American Operations (MNAO). "Improved ride and handling capabilities, along with interior and exterior refinements, make the ‘SHINKA’ Special Edition the ultimate RX-8."

The Mazda RX-8 "SHINKA" will be available with either a six-speed manual or four-speed Sport A/T automatic transmission, featuring Formula One-style steering-wheel-mounted paddles for manual gear shifting. Manual transmission-equipped cars are fitted with a 238-horsepower engine that spins to a heady 9000 rpm, while Sport A/T-equipped cars are powered by a 198-horsepower engine tuned specifically to take advantage of the automatic’s gear ratios.

To further enhance driving performance and ride comfort, the RX-8 "SHINKA" features a uniquely tuned suspension system, upgraded from the standard car. The system offers a foam urethane filled front suspension cross member and specially tuned dampers, while achieving improved body rigidity through reinforcing the top-front portion of the A-pillars and improving the stability of the rear damper mounting points.

The distinctiveness of the RX-8 "SHINKA" extends to both the exterior and interior appointments of the vehicle. The car is offered only in a rich Black Cherry body color offset by a soft Parchment Tan leather interior. Among the exclusive exterior enhancements are semi-gloss bezels for the headlamps and rear combination lamps, as well as dark-silver gloss aluminum wheels. Also standard on the RX-8 "SHINKA" is a 300-watt Bose® sound system with in-dash six-disc CD changer. While many Mazda vehicles are pre-wired for SIRIUS® satellite radio, "SHINKA" models will be the first to be equipped as standard, as all cars will include a one-year subscription to SIRIUS.