FS: '87 Mazda RX7/GN hybrid!


I think, therefore I am??
May 24, 2001


For Sale: 1987 Mazda RX7 (second generation "FC") with a 1987 Buick Grand National turbocharged and intercooled drivetrain (LC2)! Imagine the rear wheel horsepower of a new Corvette ZO6 in a 200 pound lighter package! I purchased this on an impulse in March '08 and realize I'd REALLY rather have a twin turbo kit for my '03 Cobra (can you say 800 RWHP?!). Since it's purchase, I finished a few things the builder didn't, added several upgrades, and fixed some issues that arose. I have had fun with it, having tried the boost at levels up to about 21 psi on a couple runs with good Torco octane additive in the tank and she REALLY scoots! It's actually been built to run at about 26-27 psi. HANG ON!

This is a long read, but I want to pass along ALL I know about the car! The rust free Arctic Silver (silver with a blue tint) body from Oklahoma has 183K miles on it. Although a base model RX7, it features Turbo II: hood, rear spoiler, bigger brakes, and heavier duty rear axle half shafts. I'll list all it's upgrades, with a ballpark price for reference (erring on the low side for most items). Powered by a freshly rebuilt (<2000 miles) .030" overbore 3.8 Turbo Buick Grand National engine with forged pistons, mild cam, ported heads, 10/10 crank, billet main caps, and ARP head and main studs built to be 10 second 1/4 mile capable by a known Tubo Buick engine builder in OK (>$2000); the throttle body and upper plenum were port matched and rebuilt ($50); RJC Power Plate for improved airflow distribution ($60); 55 pound injectors ($200); Turbo Tweak alky chip ($85); Includes Red Armstrong 110 octane race chip ($75); polished TA61 Turbocharger - no play in shaft ($700); welded and coated stock headers and crossover ($100); custom Terry Houston TTA style 3" downpipe with V-band coupler (>$150); Eastern Performance front mount intercooler ($700); Kenne Bell billet fuel pressure regulator ($100); Red Armstrong XP fuel pump which has been "hot wired" ($100); Red's Voltbooster ($50); modified ECM for low impedance injectors ($100); 3" stainless test pipe with exhaust dump with V-band coupler (>$50); custom 2.5" dual exhaust with Dynomax mufflers-often mistaken for a cammed small block Chevy at idle! (>$200); fresh (<1000 miles) performance built 200R4 automatic transmission with correct GN BRF valve body ($1000); Precision Industries 7 disc lock up "Vigilante" torque converter with number 4 pump ($950); fully manual converter lock up control switch ($15); new trans. TV cable ($15); Hurst Quarter stick shifter ($150); Ford Super Coupe independent rear 8.8" 3.27 to 1 geared Traction Lock center section in custom cradle ($600); new custom driveshaft ($150); Ford Racing Bullitt wheels Anthracite in color: used (good shape) 17x9 rear with 275/40-17 Nitto Drag Radials (maybe 2000 miles of tread left), brand new 17x8 front with new 225/50-17 Sumitomos ($700); new lightweight LT1 starter ($115); Painless Wiring starter wiring kit ($30); AFCO 24-19 aluminum racing radiator ($175); Ford Taurus high flow electric fan ($30); Hayden adjustable fan control ($30); LT1 3.5" mass air flow sensor and Translator ($300); 3.5" cold air intake with K&N filter mounted in fender ($60); billet alternator mount ($100); HR Parts 'n Stuff poly driver's side motor mount ($130); "Grainger valve" boost controller ($15); Autometer boost/vacuum gauge in A-pillar pod ($55); Casper's Electronics audible knock detector ($50); fuel rail mounted pressure gauge ($20); new EGR valve and control solenoid ($100); fresh vacuum hoses ($5); new "correct" turbo AC Delco PCV valve ($5); new AC Delco oxygen sensor ($25); new fuel filter ($10); new AC CR42TS spark plugs gapped at .030 ($10); Optima Red Top battery ($100); Direct Scan program/IBM laptop computer/power inverter combo makes an awesome tuning tool (>$300). I may have forgotten a thing or two, but that's *pretty much* it!

The good: 65% Mazda + 25% Buick + 10% Ford = 100% fun! It is a two seater and has no sunroof which is pretty rare for this bodystyle. It has no A/C, no power windows, no power steering, and no power brakes (that's good? Read on!). The Turbo II hood is made of aluminum. The engine was installed absolutely as far back as possible, and the battery mounted in a compartment behind the passenger seat. This adds up to a well balanced sub-2800 pound car (est.)! There are no sway bars installed but it still handles quite well (a lot of racers actually remove the rear for better handling anyway!). This allows the nose to come up and the rear to squat down for max traction when the boost comes on! Should be capable of easy 11 second quarter mile runs, and 10s possible with more tuning, boost, and traction! Have received many compliments on the stance and looks with the wide 17 inch wheels/tires. All Mazda in-dash gauges wired to work with the Buick equipment (speed, tach, temp, volts, oil psi)! The Buick ECM is mounted in the glove box for easy access. The body is absolutely rust free. Asking price includes a spare 8.8 3.27 center section and 16" Mazda Turbo II wheels with decent 205/55-16 front tires and 245/50-16 Nitto Drag Radials in great shape for the rear. Runs with no knock on 93 octane gas at about 18 psi boost. I wouldn't hesitate to drive this car anywhere (drove it 650 miles home the day I bought it!). It's ready to have an alcohol injection system installed (about $400 - that's the reason for the alky chip and the colder/tightly gapped plugs) and crank up the boost for some REAL fun!

The bad: (I'm listing all known things, no matter how minor or typical and it's such a fun car, you tend to forget all when the pedal goes down!!) Mazda's factory wiring wasn't the best: the clock works intermittently, wipers only work on one setting, tachometer tends to jump, and there is no power to the heater controls (amazingly, all the *important* stuff -lights, etc.- work great, even the rear defrost!). There are no heater hoses installed, but I do have the Buick intake hard lines and everything is there to make it functional. The body does have 21 years worth of dings and scratches. The passenger side is pretty decent overall, but the driver's side was previously "keyed." The hood had some large peeling spots right in front, so I sanded and primered the area between the headlights (sounds bad, but actually looks much better than the peeling!). Still makes for a pretty good "20 footer!" The side windows had a dark tint, for which I was pulled over on the day of purchase! I peeled it off, but haven't been able to remove all the glue (basically looks like slightly smeared windows). The rear hatch is still dark tinted, but has a small piece missing and some scuffs (overall appearance is okay). The interior is okay for it's age and mileage. Could use a thorough cleaning and has a couple small tears in the vinyl sides of the seats. There are a couple of small plastic fins missing in the vents on top of the dash (barely noticeable). Mazda used very little sound dampening material (presumably to keep weight down) so it does rattle and clunk a lot while driving and the exhaust noise is pretty loud. The Ford independent rears are notorious for "clunking and thunking" (even my 21K mile '03 Cobra does it!) and this makes up a large part of the noise. The motor does have a couple small oil leaks (typical turbo Buick) and the rear end could use new seals. There is an occasional whine/rattle that echoes through the drivetrain on decelleration. I beleive it to be something slightly "shifting" at certain drivetrain loads and vibrating through the car. (not a typical rear gear noise or anything) Previous owner thought it might be due to inaccurate driveshaft alignment, which I have not checked out. More of an annoyance than anything. I have done some basic tuning, but the car still exhibits poor cold start driveability. By that, I mean that if you try to accelerate to fast during the first two to three minutes of operation with a cold engine, it will "cough" a bit. I realize the two step colder plugs and tight gap do not help this, and are probably at least contributing to the issue.

If you do some math, you can add up over $10,000 in PARTS ALONE on this car, not to mention the car itself and the long hours of labor and research involved in such a swap! All generations of RX7s have long been popular for high powered engine swaps due to their light weight, rigid, rear drive platforms, yet there are probably only a few dozen that exist with this combo. If I do keep it, I'll install the alky kit, do a little more tuning, crank up the boost and drive the heck out of it! (maybe get a paint job, window tint, and some racing style seats) I'm half afraid it'll end up faster than my supercharged and nitrous injected Cobra (seriously!)! If you can't tell, I WON'T be heartbroken if it doesn't sell!

$7500/offer. Price may be negotiable if you don't want the Bullitt wheels or spare 8.8 center section.

Thanks for looking! Jay ygettv8@aol.com or cell 563-370-3469 afternoons/evenings (I work third shift)
*Might* be a little more motivated to sell... local guy has a Cobra turbo kit for sale!
Jay I'll give you $4K for it!!!!!!!!!!! HAHA! Anyways, for anyone looking for a seriously awesome car, this thing is very sweet! I have seen it in person and Jay has given me a ride in it. This thing pulls very hard on the street! For the price Jay is asking, the car is more than just a steal. Everyone always says, "If I had the money, I'd buy it" but I am seriously kicking myown butt cause I really dont have the money and I want it! It would be a sweet car to drive to work everyday and blow the doors off anything that tried to race! Good luck with the sale, you know I'm still pissed you are selling it right? HAHA!!! I suppose the Mustang will do for now! -----Jeremy:biggrin:
Jeremy: throw in your T-Type and you've got a deal! :eek:

TTT and an update: waiting for an alky kit for it as we speak. Should be installed this weekend.
TTT. Progressive alky kit is on and tuning has begun... feels pretty darn good and I've just scratched the surface!! Window tint glue removed. Having fun now! I'm thinking I'll regret selling, but really could use the money for my other toy(s)!
Oh yeah, raised the shifter (you can see in the above pic it looks kinda sunk into the console), did more general detailing/cleaning and even got a can of custom matched touch up paint to "pretty up" the front of the hood where the paint had flaked off (only looks *okay*, but definitely better than it did!).
Wow, I honestly can not believe you have sold it yet........GOOD! Nobody buy this car so I at least have one turbobuick guy to hang around this town with!:biggrin: J/K!

This car is seriously really cool and pulls like a feakin Freight Train!
Definitely a cool car now doubt. Any interest in trading for a twin 63's stroked ford racing, strip strip engine? It was built for one of our drag radial projects that was aborted, but still good for 1000hp easy. We got 16k into the project over time, btu with the times, willing to settle for less?
Definitely a cool car now doubt. Any interest in trading for a twin 63's stroked ford racing, strip strip engine? It was built for one of our drag radial projects that was aborted, but still good for 1000hp easy. We got 16k into the project over time, btu with the times, willing to settle for less?

Oh god man, dont get him started! I'm already trying to figure out how the heck I'm going to beat his Mustang the way it is!
Sounds nice Quint, and I've often thought of doing another Fox body (I assume you're not talking a mod motor?), but one reason I'm selling is to lessen my load of toys! Don't want to take on more... however FUN they sound!

Now... if by remote chance you mean a mod motor, let's talk more!
Was this Ted's car? If so the engine was built by Dicus Benton and he builds great turbo Buick motors. I have had two 10 second cars with motors built by Dicus and they performed flawlessly for years with no problems.
Yes, this was Ted's car. I have heard good things about Dicus also. Thanks for the input! Going to eBay soon... !
TTT... rebuilt wiper controller and Logicon (climate control) coming! 'Bout the time I get the remaining small bugs ironed out someone will want it... then I'll REALLY miss it!