1981 Mazda RX7 GLS 12b from North America


Cool engine, poised, great brakes


The oil seals leaked after about a month of owning the car.

General Comments:

It is hard to describe the thrill of the rotary Mazda engine. It is like a giant rubber band like on a model airplane, that when you push the gas pedal just spins and spins. The engine is incredible.

It felt quick. The car was very light and poised. The brakes were excellent. The car looks very sharp, a classic design.

I bought the car for $750, and put around 30,000 miles on it before I sold it because it needed a new clutch. I had a dealer put a new distributor in it for like $168.

The major problem with the car was the oil leaks around the seals, which is a known problem with these cars. The oil would leak and eventually hit a hot part like the exhaust, so it was embarrassing to have a noticeably waft of smoke rise up from the car when it had been driven more than 15 miles. But I was poor and put up with it since it only was noticeable after the car was parked. I do have the money and would consider another one, except for the fact that they are getting old. Therefore parts are harder to find.

The car sits very low, and your seat is only like six inches from the ground.

Tires were cheap since they are smaller rims. The stock rims look great.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th June, 2009

1981 Mazda RX7 GSL 1.0L R12 rotary from North America


This car is way too much fun


This was a 'non runner' when I bought it. I put in a battery and drove it 100 miles home.

The wiper assembly was seized.

The interior was ruined - sun baked to cracked and broken plastic. I think that the interior plastics are the weak part of this car.

The u-joints were shot.

The differential seal leaked.

The a/c didn't.

The heater blower didn't work - still doesn't (I haven't checked for a bad ground yet).

The steering has too much play - the one-piece, non-rebuildable steering box is worn out. Expensive to replace.

Mufflers are pricey, but I replaced mine with straight pipes.

General Comments:

This car has been a blast to drive - fast and rear-wheel fun on twisting mountain roads. I can donut this car on dry pavement!!!

Where else can you find a light, small car that is simple to work on, with an great looking interior that fits like a glove?

Sure, the engine can't be rebuilt at the corner garage, and the interior is junk, but seats from a late 80's early 90s Honda civic fit really well, and I'm the only one in town who has one.

When it dies, I can toss it without loosing money. What a deal.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th September, 2007

1981 Mazda RX7 Series 1 Mark 2 2.3 Rotary petrol from UK and Ireland


Exhaust fell off (new ones are £500), all tyres have needed replacing. Windscreen has a crack in it.

General Comments:

Owners club are very helpful, Specialist maintenance people are helpful. Local Mazda Garage does not repair RX7's. Mazda garage that does, asked over £1200.00 for an exhaust, and a new wing will set you back over £500.00. Caveat Emptor. Still, car is superb, and is as much fun to drive as a mini (which means that brake fade is a thing of the past). Drive and enjoy.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th June, 1999

31st May 2001, 07:29

It's 1.3 litre Bridgepoint Rotary.

1981 Mazda RX7 Sports 2 Wankel Rotary petrol from UK and Ireland


Pop-up headlamp motor burnt out, exhaust cracked in front of rear box, radiator leaked, and a bad earth kept draining the battery (all this over 6 months, though the car was 15 years old at the time).

General Comments:

A bit unconventional and not the fastest of cars but a thoroughly enjoyable car to drive. Mazda should have kept making the original RX-7 models instead of the MX-5.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 10th November, 1998