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Autotrader Find: 1985 Mazda RX-7 With 395,000 Miles

You’re looking at a 1985 Mazda RX-7 that looks like every other 1985 Mazda RX-7, except it has 395,000 miles. That’s enough to get to the moon and part of the way back, in a rotary-engine car that most people don’t consider very reliable. Needless to say, it’s an impressive feat.

Offered by a private seller in Houston for $5,500, this RX-7 is one of the highest-mileage cars listed for sale on Autotrader. And while the "high-mileage" list is typically comprised of pickups and fleet vehicles, I was surprised to see an RX-7 on it today — a vehicle most people save and use as a second car to keep the mileage low.

But, indeed, this car has 395,000 miles on the odometer, as verified by a photo of the odometer. Admittedly, it doesn’t have 395,000 miles on the engine: The advertisement states that a new engine was installed about 100,000 miles ago, likely suggesting the original rotary powertrain gave out — a surprise to no one who’s spent time with rotary-powered vehicles.

What is surprising, however, is the fact that the ad says this RX-7 is a one-owner vehicle — meaning one single person has had it for 33 years, bringing it that incredible distance. The Carfax report seems to confirm this, noting the original owner had the car in Southern California for decades before moving to Houston in 2014. The Carfax report shows many service records from a foreign car service shop in Aliso Viejo, California, and even notes some work done by a Mazda dealership in Houston in 2014, when the RX-7 had 386,000 miles.

Indeed, this may not be the lowest-mileage RX-7 out there, but it certainly looks nice — and wouldn’t it be satisfying to roll over that 400,000-mile mark? Find a Mazda RX-7 for sale

Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.

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Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More about Doug Demuro

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6 COMMENTS

    • You are correct but reliability correlates with high mileage. Combine reliability with pride of ownership… and you have those million mile vehicles. In this case, the pride of ownership is likely at the most illogical and obsessive level that we can only salute the driver with an triangular salute!

  1. I had an ’82 RX-7, and I loved that car, despite the fact that it was literally the most unreliable car I’ve ever owned.  I bought it with 92k miles on it, and in the course of 2 years and 15k miles I replaced the alternator 3 times, the rear shocks, front control arms, pitman arm, tie-rod ends, clutch & slave valve, windshield wiper motor and linkage, the battery, driveshaft CV joints, starter motor, tires, brakes and more parts I can’t remember.  The car was pretty tired at that point – I can’t imagine how it could go nearly 400k miles without replacing every moving part once or twice over the years.

  2. How many engines has it been through, really? I had a ’77 RX-3–pretty much the same engine–and it was toast at about 90K. No way they got 295K out of the previous engine.

    • I was thinking the same thing.  Almost 100K miles on the “new” engine … will be due for a “new new” or a “new new new new” engine soon!

    • They probably could have, but it would have needed rebuilt many times. I don’t know how long the FB RX7 lasts, but the RX8 needs a rebuilt every 80k miles for new rotor apex seals to be put in.

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