Mazda has given up on the Wankel and so has the seller or today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe RX-7 as it rocks SBC power. Let’s find out if this heart transplanted droptop’s price can get your heart beating.

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Yesterday’s 1980 Corolla Hatchback may have been a sexy senior citizen, but with its puny motor and automatic transmission it really was kind of a little old lady’s car, and not that vroom-vroom little old lady from the Beach Boys’ song either.

That factor, and it’s being above the magic 2-K price threshold put the ancient Corolla solidly on the wrong side of the vote, ending up with a 61% Crack Pipe loss. Maybe if the seller had included some current pictures of the car the result would have been different.

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Wow, we’ve had quite the number of Japanese cars here this week. I hope you’re not getting tired of them as we’ve got another one today to close us out. This 1990 Mazda RX-7 is sort of my way of making up for that Datsun from Wednesday. Yes, I know that one was a Crack Pipe gimme, but hopefully this similar—but much better presented—offering will generate more healthy consternation.

What’s similar between this and that SBC-powered Datsun? Well, they’re both red—although this Mazda is red all over, with decent looking paint and no missing pieces. They’re also both Japanese sports cars; Wednesday’s Datsun being the one that pretty much started the trend and this Mazda being a significant torch bearer during the ‘80s and ‘90s. Finally, they both have had their original motors ripped out and replaced by Chevy V8s.

That Datsun had an oddball choice of a V8, a 283, and it came with that old school engine’s 3-speed manual to boot. This Mazda on the other hand, rocks a fuel-injected LT-1 from 1995 and a T-56 six-speed stick. Yeah, that’s more like it, right?

That LT-1 benefits from what’s described as a ‘custom low restriction exhaust,’ although without a corresponding opening up of the intake side—which is not apparent—that’s likely just for the sweet exhaust note and not added poop. The power steering has been replaced with the armstrong variety, and there’s no A/C so prepare to become a sweaty betty driving this car on hot summer days.

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That’s okay though because this is a convertible, featuring Mazda’s clever hard/soft retractible top and prominent windshield and fixed wing glass that makes you feel like you’re wearing a motorcycle helmet whenever you drive it. At least that’s been my experience with these cars.

When you drive this one you’ll likely notice that the interior looks to be in fine shape. There’s the expected modern stereo head unit and an unexpected but appreciated custom gauge cluster to monitor the foreign mill under the sloping hood.

It should be noted that the original Wankel that lived under that hood weighed in at a bantam 250-pounds. In comparison, the LT-1 tips the scales at a more portly 465-lbs. Running the same springs and shocks as with the former should engender some interesting handling properties now that it has almost twice the poundage to pound down the road.

Helping it down that road are a set of sweet factory-offered BBS basketweave wheels. Those help with keeping the stock appearance that hides the big surprise under the hood. Mileage is 104,000.

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So, this is seemingly a lot better put together than that 280Z from the other day, and as you might expect from a turn-key custom, it’s a tad more expensive than a in-process project. The asking price is $5,500, which get’s you that said turn-key experience. This generation of RX-7 is seemingly unloved, being the Jan Brady to the FA’s Marcia and FD’s Cindy. Still, this is the one and only edition to drop its top, something that can’t be said for any of the Brady girls.

What’s your take on this LT-1 imbued RX-7 and that $5,500 price? Does that seem like a deal? Or, is this yet another ‘someone else’s project that comes with a warning and a too-high price tag?

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You decide!

Northern Michigan Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

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H/T to no-Kinja Jay for the hookup!

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