Commercial Time: 1974 Luce AP

November 11, 2011 in Commerical time

In the last month of 1974 Mazda revealed a new revolutionary Luce: the Luce AP! AP stands for Anti Pollution and in 1974 it was really necessary to do something against the bad breath of the rotary engine.

A few months later Mazda revealed the second generation Cosmo with the same acronyms AP. Cleaner cars for the future: that was all that mattered for marketing in the 1970s.

Link to video: Luce AP ad

No more rotary powered cars

August 27, 2011 in rotary

Reading about Mazda’s announcement no longer produce rotary cars made me realize we’ll never see these awesome cars anymore. Even the hydrogen RX-8 could not save Mazda’s rotary project…

Sayonara rotary engine!

WTF: JDM or USSRDM?

December 6, 2010 in WTF

Somehow I think this Russian VAZ-21059 (aka Lada 2105) got a small identity problem:
JDM or USSRDM VAZ-21059
JDM or USSRDM VAZ-21059

Or could it be that it is actually a 21059 replica powered by a Mazda 12A or 13B?

DOTS: Mazda 323 mk1

October 18, 2009 in dots

In the October 2009 issue of Practical Classics the editors wondered about an eBay sale of an almost mint Mazda 323 mk1 with a broken clutch: in their eyes the car sold for a large sum of money (over 1000 pounds). For classic Japanese cars of that era that amount of money is actually a bargain. On the other side they commented correctly: try to find another one in the same state!

Well I did not succeed in doing that, but instead I found this good looking 323:
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1

I was a bit surprised to find the car for sale at Marktplaats.nl (Dutch Craigslist) for only 950 euros!

From far away it appears to be in a good state! But getting closer reveals some flaws:
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1

V6? Good joke guys! If the car would have been lowered and sitting on some stretched rubber I may have bought it… 😉
No, the car actually runs the original 1.3 liter Mazda TC engine, mated with a 4 speed manual.

Parked in this way it looks like it is participating in a drag race!
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1

The interior was in good condition: the seats are half (fake) leather, half tweed. The front seats do have covers on them, so it a big question what’s under that cover… The dashboard looked completely original and not hacksawed to make a modern car radio fit.

The car isn’t really rusty. All the rust I saw is only surface rust. In some places the car already had its crusty parts repaired:
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1
Down on the Street: Mazda 323 mk1

So I’d say, not a bad RWD car for only 950 euros! It may be a bithigher priced than the one sold on eBay. However this 323 is drivable, while the one on eBay could not move by itself…

In case you are interested, you can find the ad here!

BTW: I know, the Mazda 323 mk1 is actually the Mazda Familia mk4. Europe already suffered from a renaming scheme due to Mazda and Peugeot fighting over the 808 naming scheme of the Mazda Familia mk3. Mazda changed its name to 818 and by the time the mk4 got launched they decided to rename almost its complete lineup to the x2x scheme. The Familia became the 323, the Capella the 626 and the Luce the 929.

Hilarious: car usage in Tokusatsu

February 6, 2009 in hilarious

As I said yesterday: I was browsing Tokusatsu videos on Youtube to make my Hilarious posting this week. My idea was to see how cars were actually used through these series. Of course I mean recognizable cars and not the Bosozoku styled super-heroes cars.

First of all I found this intro of the 1988 Choujuu Sentai Liveman series:
At 0:30 the first hero drives a white Mazda FC convertible.
A poor student at Academia, but a strong leader and quick thinking under pressure. He is brave and a hardworker. Initially starts as hot-headed and sarcastic, but grows into the role of dependable leader as the series progresses.
Could this have been the inspiration for Shuichi Shigeno for Ryosuke Takahashi in Initial D? Only difference is that Ryosuke is not a poor student but rather a rich student taking a break during his study…

Then take the intro of the 1986 Choushinsei Flashman series:

The red Flashman is a professional racing driver. To be more precise: he drives the number 170 Mazda 757. It must somehow be true that he did was the driver because number 170 did not finish Le Mans 1986. Probably one of the villains must have wanted to sabotage Le Mans 1986 and in order to prevent this red Flashman must have abandoned the race. 😉

And in the last (but not least) example the 1984 Birth of the 10th! Kamen Riders All Together!! series:

The blue Kamen Rider drives a Mazda HB Cosmo (a.k.a. the Mazda 929 overseas) like he’s doing audition for the first movie of the the Shuto Kousoku series (a.k.a. Shuto Trial or Freeway Speedway).

Somehow I see a pattern in these intros: Toei and Mazda! Coincidence? No, I don’t think so…