Step back in time, if you will, away from pandemic and panic, isolation and toilet paper shortage.
Back, back, back to 1970.
People are taking Quaaludes. Brown is the hottest colour in the world. Dark Side of the Moon’s coming out in three years. You don’t know that yet, but you can feel that something good’s on its way.
Until it arrives, you’ve got this four-wheeled wonder to trip out on: Mazda’s RX-500 concept car. Like the Floyd album it’s from a future not yet realised.
Created in part to celebrate 50 years of Mazda, the RX-500 stuns the world at its Tokyo Motor Show unveiling.
If you ask a Mazda exec they’ll tell you it’s a rolling test-bed for safety tech. The designers, on the other hand, know in their hearts they’re building a car to compete with the Ferraris and Lamborghinis of the world.
Motivation comes from a mid-mounted 1 litre rota mota which makes 247 horsepower and revs all the way to an ear-bleedingly rapid 15,000 rpm. Top speed is 150 mph thanks to lightweight materials that give a kerb weight of just 1800 lbs.
As for the safety stuff, check out the rear lights. Green tells the cars behind that the RX-500’s accelerating (if their windows shattering from the screaming engine isn’t enough of a clue), yellow means it’s cruising at steady speed, and red of course signifies braking. See, testing safety!
This thing is too cool. A tiny yet powerful engine coupled with retro-future JDM Ferrari Breadvan looks and kitschy 70s tech. What’s not to love?
James Walker is a freelance writer with a passion for four-wheeled things and twisty roads.