Lemon Fresh RX-7

Last weekend the 24 Hours of LeMons South took place at Carolina Motorsports Park in Kershaw, SC. The epic beater endurance race of cars that cost $500 or less saw a 1-2 sweep by none other than a pair of Mazda RX-7s. When was the last time you saw a Wankel, much less one that cost only half a grand, survive this much abuse?

We’ve been told by Murilee Martin, former participant and guest judge, this is a race in which cars will get hit. And yet, these little Mazdas managed to evade crushing by some truly gargantuan slabs of Detroit iron. Take a look at this gallery of all the finishing five-Benjamin beaters, including a Buick/Opel, which we all know is really an Isuzu I-Mark.


This post is filed under: mazda, motorsports.

5 Responses to Lemon Fresh RX-7

  1. Bob said:

    Ugh. Some of those cars make me really sad. The Buick/Opel/Isuzu, the Volvo Amazon, the RWD Celicas, etc.


  2. Jeff Brown said:

    That race makes me want to cry. All those great classic imports getting trashed and abused, when all they needed was a little love to bring them to glory. I would have offered to buy the MR2 and celicas to keep them from the abuse.

  3. Yosho said:

    Actually, it’s a great race series and I for one would rather see these cars out on a track than rusting away in some backyard or going to the crusher. This race series isn’t a crash derby if that’s what springs to mind. Many of the teams you saw in this race will be out there with the same car next year.

  4. Dave-ROR said:

    You guys do realize that most of these cars were rescued from the junkyard to be used as purpose built race cars right? These were not street cars in decent condition in most cases, and would not be the best vehicles to use for that purpose (let alone as a good base for a restoration). I raced at the race pictured above, not in a classic, but in a shell rescued from the weeds in someone’s backyard. Are you suggesting that a better use for that car would have been to sit and rot in a yard? Everyone who roadraces would disagree with your opinions that using those cars to race is “sad”. Hell if you think that RX7 makes you sad, stay away from any SCCA Club Racing event….

    Remember, not everyone is into rebuilding/restoring cars to take them to car shows, some of us actually like to race the cars in a LEGAL and controlled environment.

    For the record, most cars don’t get destroyed at the Lemons race, it’s not a demo derby and almost all of the cars live on to be raced again. Our car will be fixed (minor body damage and some transmission issues) to live, and race, another day. These cars may get more attention than a lot of the cars that people own on this site. Yes, the cars get hit, that happens at times.

  5. Jaime said:

    The rotary engine is an excellent engine. it is nimble, light, lot less components than a piston counterpart, and very reliable.

    The secret to a long lived rotary rngine is a good cooling system and good lubrication management. That means a working cooling system and oil level in check.
    Rotaries that break down are rotaries that run out of oil or have a neglected cooling system.

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