Clean Third Gen Coupe: 1983 Mazda 626

Jeff LaveryBy Jeff Lavery

The early Mazda 626 is largely obsolete, with any remaining examples of the company’s long-time nameplate comprised of last-generation sedans. The 626 took on multiple identities throughout the global markets in which it was sold, with survivor-grade coupes like this one here on eBay¬†among some of the prettier offerings companies like Mazda, Nissan and Mitsubishi were shipping to the states in the 1980s. This third-gen coupe is in California with no bids.

This 626 maintains excellent cosmetics thanks to its low mileage of 50,302. As was typical for the era, interiors wore an assortment of matching color shades to coordinate with the exterior; in this case, different tones of blue inside match the ice blue exterior. Carpets are impressively clean and the generous front bucket seats look quite comfortable and untorn. The 3-speed automatic may detract from the driving experience, but is said to shift well.

Motor Trend magazine called the 626 its import car of the year in 1983, likely a little known fact among even the most enthusiastic of Mazda fans. Considering the last hurrah of the 626 stateside languished in a crowded market of midsize Japanese sedans (despite the V6 / 5-speed combo being one of the tastier sport sedan offerings at the time), it’s surprising to note that road test editors recognized Mazda’s entry into the mainstream as award-worthy.

You have to dig some of the classic 1980s Japanese touches, from the taillights that encompass the entire rear panel to the alloy wheels sporting horizontal accent marks across an otherwise smooth rim face. The later turbocharged coupe and hatchback models are the 626 of choice among enthusiasts, but a survivor like this one is certainly worth saving and preserving as this generation increasingly becomes extinct.

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Comments

  1. Scotty Gilbertson Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Holy man is that nice! It would make a nice garage mate to a certain automatic-equipped 626 sedan.. (cough)..

    3+

  2. Miguel

    The opening bid seems to about what these cars have always been worth.

    Now it is worth more because it has been in a garage for years?

    Maybe it is because the dollar is worth less.

    Also I would be worried about the low mileage on this car. People bought these cars to drive not as a future collectible.

    What was wrong with this car that it sat for so much time?

    1+

  3. jtnc

    Incredible condition! My mom bought a new 626 coupe exactly like this one down to the color and wheels. She loved it, and it was an excellent car for 10 years but at that point started developing some electrical and carb problems. We looked at a 1994 626, but I felt that the 626 had actually regressed over the intervening decade (except that it had EFI). She traded the 626 for a 1994 Camry LE which was a far superior car in 1994, though not very exciting. Of course, nothing ever went wrong with the Camry.

    0

  4. Vin in NJ

    My ex- wife had a 626 with an automatic. It was a great little car, but it seemed the oil light would come on intermittently, and she never remembered to tell me that it did. As it turned out, the oil pump was bad and she ultimately blew the engine.
    Did I mention she is my ex??

    3+

  5. MRE2ME

    Had an 89 for 11 years. Absolutely bullit-proof. Traded in on the love of my life,a 2000 miata (13 years) Vin these liked to drink a little oil-Just top up once a month.

    1+

  6. Jim Clark

    I had the Touring sedan version of this model. Extremely fun car with the 5 speed, but I bought it a little too late in its life and it started nickel-diming me. Traded it in on a brand new 1991 B2200 pickup and never looked back!

    0

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