It’s Good to Have Options

I have the luxury of owning several nice cars to choose from when I want to drive somewhere. I’ve acquired them over the last 10 or so years. A 1988 RX-7 Convertible, a 2004 RX-8, a 2004 Mazda3, and a 1991 B2600i 4×4.

The RX-7, is a project car in the purest sense of the phrase. It rarely gets on the road, mostly for lack of time to get it just how I want it. Its got a highly upgraded turbo 13B transplant and a host of other suspension/body mods. I’ve been working on it off and on for about 10 years! Just when it feels like I’m getting close to putting her back on the road, I add 10 more things to the ‘To Do’ list.

The latest addition to my family is a 2004 Mazda3, my great ‘family car’. It’s sporty enough to have some fun but doesn’t bust the bank when I stop for gas. Aside from a prototype CS intake, some 18’s donated by a RX8 (not the one below), and tinted windows, I’ve not had the chance to modify it yet. Next mod, CS exhaust with catalyst.

The RX-8 has been a blast. It’s my garage queen. Here in the northwest it seems like it’s always raining so I’ll go weeks at a time without driving it. A shame, I know. Of all the cars I’ve owned it’s the best fit for me. I think of it as a practical sports car. If Mazda could figure out a way to add 50 WHP without dropping the gas mileage to 6 mpg I think they’d sell a lot more of these. It handles better than just about any sporty car under 30 grand, and most Mazdas except for maybe the MX-5. For power, that’s what a 350hp RX-7 is for. This is a refined machine that is more than capable of getting up-to-speed.

Oddly, with much better cars to choose from, I usually pick the B-Series pickup. I searched long and hard for this one. A rebadged Ford would not do (1994-200X) and Mazda didn’t sell a lot of the Cab Plus 4×4 in the USA from 198X-199X. I drive it because I don’t have to worry about door dings and rock chips as much and it’s very handy for errands. But alas, I’m getting tired of spending my days with 80’s vintage technology so I’m looking to upgrade. Word around the campfire is that Mazda is going to reintroduce their truck here soon. I’m crossing my fingers.

Being a Mazda loyalist as long as I’ve been able to drive, and personally owning over 20 of them in my life, I can say I’m addicted. I can’t wait to check out the new pickups and the Mazda2. The latter was at the Portland Auto Show Jan 28 to 30 and I checked it out, very exciting stuff!

– Rich

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