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The Rotary-Powered Mazda RX-500 Shooting Brake Is Mindblowing

Illustration for article titled The Rotary-Powered Mazda RX-500 Shooting Brake Is Mindblowing

The Mazda RX-500 is bonkers even by concept car standards. It had a 491cc rotary engine revving to 14,000 RPM and made a whopping 247 horsepower. Welcome to Japan in 1970.


The RX-500 stayed a one-off, but Mazda acted like they built three simply by repainting it twice after the 1970 Tokyo Motor Show. It was displayed there as a mobile test bed for high-speed safety, but with 247 hp moving 1,873 pounds, it only had a top speed of 125 mph. Still, at least reaching that counted as an adventure as the 491cc engine revved to almost 15,000rpm.

It also came with an extra set of green and amber rear lamps that lighted up depending on how hard you pushed the loud pedal. Because a rotary is always loud.

I didn't know about this car, but boy, am I glad to do now!

For more pictures, head over to Goodwood Road&Racing!


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Engine sound.