29K-Mile Award Winner: 1986 Mazda B2000 LX

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I keep waiting for the custom truck and mini-truckin’ phase to come back, whatever happened to that 1990s magazine and trend? Sadly, at the end of 2019, the faceless corporate conglomerate that Motor Trend has devolved into shut down Truckin’ magazine and 18 other magazines. This familiar seller has this mind-blowing show truck posted here on eBay in Lakeland, Florida, the current bid price is $10,099, and the reserve isn’t met.

This isn’t a six-wheel crazy custom mini truck as we may have seen in the 90s, but please check out the dozens of great photos the seller has taken of this show truck. The exterior doesn’t look like it’s too out of the ordinary, but once you see the engine compartment, you’ll know why we’re excited about this one. No, it doesn’t have a Hemi, but it’s a work of art under there. Mini-Truckin is still reportedly a thing, we just don’t see it publicized as much as we did a couple of decades ago.

Mazda came out with three-wheel trucks in the early-1930s and the B-series pickups started appearing in the summer of 1961. This example is a fourth-generation truck, which was made from 1985 to 1998. We got them in late-’85 for the 1986 model year and JD Power rated the ’86 through ’88 trucks as having the highest satisfaction rating from customers. There doesn’t appear to be a major flaw in this truck anywhere, even in the bed.

The interior looks bone-stock standard and basically in like-new condition. The seller says that this truck has 29,554 miles and it shows. This is no custom interior but it looks almost perfect. As an LX, this is a nicer trim-level Mazda and the seats look great. In this era, the LX was the top trim level and for 1986 this was fairly luxurious for an imported pickup. The underside gives us a bit of a preview of what’s to come, looking as clean as a show truck should look.

Zinnnnnng! I know that a lot of you (most?) looked ahead when I mentioned the crazy engine compartment, but there it is in all its four-cylinder glory. This is Mazda’s 2.0-liter SOHC inline-four, which would have had 86 horsepower when new, definitely not a powerhouse, but it’s hard to argue with the custom look here – other than maybe the standard battery. We don’t know if this one has been modified to add more power or not, but the seller says that this truck has won multiple awards and that isn’t surprising at all. Were any of you into custom mini pickups a few decades ago, or are you now?

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Comments

  1. angliagt angliagtMember

    Truckin’ magazine – still have my collection from
    the early years,when I had one of the first custom mini-
    trucks in Eureka.It was a ’72-1/2 Toyota RN22 that was
    my first real vehicle.
    I bought a B2000 like this (LX).I think I paid $1200
    for it,& it was in excellent shape.These have a torsion bar
    front suspension,& mine had been raised up so that it
    looked like a four wheel drive.
    It was a nice truck,but also a gutless wonder.Our
    oldest Son was driving down Highway 101 in Arcata when
    he got pulled over for doing 78 in a 65 zone.The cop was
    a Humboldt State University cop,& was a jerk,asking our
    Son questions,& cutting him off whwn he tried to answer.
    I also wonder what that cop was doing on 101,as HSU is
    off of the freeway.
    A few days later,we were driving to Fortuna,on a long,
    flat part of 101.I had my foot to the floor,& hit………70.
    I called the cop’s supervisor,& told him that truck
    wouldn’t do 78,& that the cop’s conduct was very unprofessional.
    Our Son had left for Navy boot camp at the Great Lakes facility,so
    he couldn’t make it to his court date.
    We got a call later,saying that the charges had been dropped.

    Like 12
  2. HoA Howard A ( since 2014)Member

    You know, it never ceases to amaze me, someone, regardless of how they got the money, sticks a ton of it into one of the most unlikely candidates. Don’t get me wrong, I always thought Mazda was the best of the bunch, perhaps because of its Ford affiliation, but come on, really? I mean, under the hood, it’s all drag race quality, a fortune here. Its JUST a Mazda pickup. Apparently, this is what Californians work for, so they can have the fanciest dang Mazda pickup. People are living on streets of El Paso in the cold, and these people are pixxing money away on this crap, just terrible.

    Like 1
    • HoA Howard A ( since 2014)Member

      The author maintains a professional view, but he knows how I feel.

      Like 0
    • HoA Howard A ( since 2014)Member

      I want to apologize,,again, I simply can’t let this stuff bother me. This, as sheltered as I may see it, was this persons world, a 1986 Mazda pickup. I realize, it’s a “pride in their ride”, but just a poor choice of vehicles to stick tens of thousands into. I mean, stick it in a Jag, or a GTO, and the “satisfaction per dollar spent” may have equaled itself out, but normally a one shot deal. They do have 5 bids, and a deal for those folks at the sellers expense, I suppose.

      Like 1
    • Joe

      It’s their money and their truck. You have no horse in this race. When you supply the funding then you have a say.

      Like 19
  3. CVPantherMember

    Incredible condition, and the engine bay, well I agree, Scotty, it’s a work of art.
    Nothing terrible about it.
    Luckily we live in a country where people are free to do things like this no matter how much bloviating someone does….

    Like 13
  4. Big C

    The stereo in this thing is hilarious. I wonder how many kids ran these things off the road fiddling with that EQ? And, ten grand is all the money on this thing.

    Like 2
  5. Bill

    Scotty. Don’t blame MT for shutting down unprofitable endeavors. Blame the very thing that allows your business to flourish
    The internet and modern inventions such as e mail. I for one love having a print form in my hands that I can touch and feel, but must admit, like the song says.
    “Oh, these times, they are a changing”

    Like 1
    • Scotty GilbertsonAuthor

      You’re probably right about that, Bill. Although, I wish Barn Finds was my business…

      Like 2
      • Bill

        Why did I think you were a principal?
        BTW. Barn Finds makes my day. I’m no car restorer, just an aficionado. I’ve learned so much from the write ups and comments. Their knowledge is encyclopedic. Thank you!

        Like 0
  6. Adam

    I would add a chromed roll bar with driving lights and some massive speakers in the bed to listen to Christian rock!

    Like 0
  7. Troy

    In 1989 you could buy one for $7995 plus tax and license with a bed liner they were great little trucks for the money sold mine years later for $2200 bucks with 265k miles on it. Personally I’d like to get another one but not this one that’s been lowered and probably spent its life doing burnouts to show off

    Like 3
  8. angliagt angliagtMember

    I don’t think you can do a burnout in it with that engine.

    Like 2
  9. Jerry Sanders

    Odd question for the mini truck group, which one had the best 4 wheel drive set up?

    Like 0
    • Joe

      Toyota with the solid front axle.

      Like 2
  10. Jeffro

    I had a group of friends that were always dropping SBC in these trucks. It was an easy fit.

    Like 0
  11. Comet

    I’m trying to understand a prior contributors “logic.” So… If a owner decides to spend a ton of his own money on a less than desirable vehicle, (contributors opinion) like this truck, it’s a bad thing because folks are living on the cold streets of El Paso. Now…if the same owner takes that same money, and spends it on a more desirable vehicle, it’s a good thing. Aren’t folks living on the cold streets of El Paso either way? Evidently ethical and personal crusades can be flexible, based on one’s automotive tastes.
    Oh yeah, one other thing, nice truck!

    Like 10
  12. Robert Levins

    It is a great truck! Well done. As far as the “El Paso” folks, I can totally see the logic in spending a lot of money on a vehicle vs helping homeless people. The problem isn’t the money on the vehicle, it’s an entire United States problem. If I had it my way there wouldn’t be the chronic homeless problem, matter of fact one of them would be buying this truck. As far as the truck goes, it’s definitely a work of art, period. It’s worth something to someone at whatever price is negotiated between buyer and seller. After all, it’s a free country. Great article by the way! Good luck to all involved.

    Like 3
    • angliagt angliagtMember

      Could we PLEASE leave politics out of this/here?

      Like 4
      • B302

        Where did Mr. Levins mention politics? A previous commenter basically did, and even apologized for it. He normally does not apologize.

        Like 1
  13. Scotty GilbertsonAuthor

    Auction update: this one made it to $11,100 and didn’t meet the seller’s reserve.

    Like 0

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