Remembering Japanese cars from the past

Tag: mazda rx5

Marktplaats treasures: Low mileage Mazda RX5 (not even 1000km!)

This ad on Marktplaats (Dutch Ebay/Craigslist) really shocked me: a genuine Mazda RX5 with less than 1000 kilometer on the odometer!
Low mileage Mazda RX5
Obviously I contacted the seller and he confirmed the car is genuine. It never left the dealership and nobody has owned the car before and it was only used occasionally for a (very) short drive to keep it in good condition!

Now imagine how immaculate this car is: Continue reading

Smell the Mazda Cosmo AP

Some time ago I wrote about the Mazda Cosmo AP RX5 in both the popular Bosozoku style car regular and a police car chase with a Cosmo AP when I had too little Seibu Keisatsu. I just found this original Japanese Mazda Cosmo AP ad from the 1976:

I really don’t get the slogan: Now, the smell of Cosmo. I know AP stands for anti pollution so they don’t mean I am supposed to smell the unburnt petrol fumes, so do they actually think that I am supposed to smell something else, flowerlike for example, when the Cosmo AP passes?

Lucky enough it is not too hard to understand the story behind this commercial: those cops are just jealous! Even though they drive the best motorcycles of the world, deep in their heart they really want a Cosmo AP too! So, fast forward 30 years on the cop with the sideburns and mustache and see him standing in his very own Mazda Cosmo AP police special:

If you are interested, I found several other Cosmo AP advertisements:
1978 Mazda Cosmo AP advertisement
1979 Mazda Cosmo AP advertisement
1980 Mazda Cosmo AP advertisement

Random: Police chase Cosmo AP RX5 vs Savanna RX7

This week Japanese Nostalgic Car did not have a Seibu Keisatsu like video: they had the Tokyo Matter by pixar I posted last week. So I started to watch some myself on Youtube. I did find a great related video of a police chase. The “bad” guys are being chased in their brand new Mazda Savanna RX7 by a gigantic police force of outdated J-tin and by the chief detective in his Mazda Cosmo AP RX5.

In the start of the video the chase is quite spectacular, but after the chief detective made his Cosmo AP into a convertible and still continues the chase it really starts to get rediculous! At the end he bashes his Cosmo into some boxes after going head to head with the Savanna RX7 and even before he hits the boxes his car is already on fire.

Anyone familiar with this series? I want to see more! 😀

Popular Bosozoku cars: Mazda Cosmo RX5

To stay with the 70s styling this week I will highlight the Mazda Cosmo RX5:
Bosozoku style Mazda (sexy) Cosmo RX5
Bosozoku style Mazda (sexy) Cosmo RX5

Just like last weeks Mark II X3/X4 and the Gloria/Cedric C330 I did two weeks ago the Mazda Cosmo RX5 has a very distinct bodystyle and can easily be spotted between all cars on Bosozoku meetings.

What happened? Boso got shot?
What happened? Boso got shot?

The bodyshape of the Mazda Cosmo RX5 has some lines which make it look mean. The Cosmo RX5 lines really resemble Mazda’s design linup of that era: all American styling! I think this also reflects in the modifications made on this car, especially with the car in the picture above. Wild wild west yanky style!

Nicely styled bosozoku Mazda Cosmo RX5
Nicely styled bosozoku Mazda Cosmo RX5

The weird thing is that I actually couldn’t find any non Bosozoku styled Mazda Cosmo RX5. No Shakotan or Kyusha styled cars, only the bad ass modified bosozoku cars… Big wide fenders, oil coolers sticking out of the grille, big ducktail spoilers and exhausts high in the air: I’ve seen it all!

Factory stock Mazda Cosmo RX5
Factory stock Mazda Cosmo AP RX5

The Mazda RX5 was the successor of the first Mazda Cosmo and not the Mazda RX4. The RX4 was the wankel engined Luce, while the Luce is more a luxurious sedan with a wankel engine the Cosmo is the more sporty car. The car was called Mazda Cosmo AP in Japan while outside Japan it sold as the Mazda RX5. In some countries is was sold as the Mazda 121 featuring a 1.8 liter SOHC piston engine.

Factory stock Mazda Cosmo RX5
Factory stock Mazda Cosmo AP RX5

The Mazda Cosmo featured the 12A or the 13B engine in Japan, while overseas all Mazda RX5s featured the 13B. The reason for this decision was because overseas meant America. Americans, of course, favored larger displacements back then. The 13B was basically a widened 12A engine which caused the displacement to increase to 1308cc. That’s a 15% increase in displacement on a Wankel engine!

The 13B was a big improvement above the 12A because it was designed for high performance and low emissions at the same time. AP stood for Anti-Pollution and this designation was adapted on all Japanese Cosmos.

Mazda Cosmo warning system
Mazda Cosmo warning system

Even though the Mazda Cosmo AP RX5 was the more sportier car it did feature a lot of luxury which could only be found in the high end Luce. Take for instance this warning system: it checked the functioning of several systems in the car. Nowadays it may sound as trivial with all new cars already featuring satellite navigation but back then it was unlike anything seen so far!

I really love the styling of the Cosmo AP! Too bad this car only sold in Europe as the Mazda 121 with the piston engine… 🙁

[I posted this article earlier today on]

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