One of the first articles we posted here on GrandJDM was a quick piece on some of the more oddball rotary-engined concoctions that Mazda cooked up in its early years (here).
The most unexpected one was of course the 13B engined Parkway 26. Now 26 doesn’t mean that it has two 13B engines, although it probably needs two since it’s a big, 2750kg 26 seater bus. Alas, it only has one rotary engine, the poor pollutionised REAPS 135hp 13B struggled to power it to a top speed of 125km/h (no word on how long it might take to get there). Mind you, two 13Bs would have been a good start, since the Parkway weighs as much as an RX3 Savanna…towing a trailer with two more RX3 Savannas on it. Load it up with 25 of your best friends and you can add yet another two RX3s to that hypothetical trailer (but look on the bright side…maybe they’ll spring for gas).
We found some more pictures of this oddity in a recent issue of J’s Tipo magazine, including some interior shots.
One thing’s for sure, and this sucker is RARE. Mazda only made 44 of the things (no big surprise as to why) between 1974 and 1977. A curiosity is that the Rotary Parkway is actually piston-powered. Well, sort of. A 1000cc piston engine lives in the rear of the bus, to power the huge a/c system. Toyota had a similar system on their Coaster buses of the same era, which had modified versions of the old Sports 800 (article here) flat twin in the back to power their a/c system.
Twin fuel flaps open. Now there’s a sight you’ll be seeing quite often 🙂 Old school rotaryholics will know that being an early pollution motor with the thermal reactor, fuel consumption will be really quite epic anyway and will probably make quite short work of the 140L fuel capacity. This particular Parkway belongs to Okura Auto, more pics can be found here.
Here’s a test. If you look at the pic just below and the first thought that comes into your mind is “20B twin turbo conversion” then you might….just might….be a rotary redneck 😀
The mighty 13B lives under a hatch between the front seats, where room for maintenance is very generous….wait….can you hear that? It’s….it’s like the engine’s trying to say something to us. Listen out:
“Help me…I can’t take this anymore….please kill me….”