Mention the name Mazda and the first thing that comes to mind to most people is it’s iconic RX7 and RX8 sports cars which are powered by a unique type of engine – the rotary engine. A rotary engine works differently from piston engines – it uses one or more rotors to produce power instead of pistons.
Mazda put rotary engines in more cars than just the RX7, but did you know Mazda used to sell a pick-up truck powered by a rotary engine?
Mazda marketed the Mazda Rotary Pick-Up, or Mazda REPU with the slogan “the pickup with pickup”. The Mazda REPU was a light truck powered by a 1.3 litre 2-rotor rotary engine, similiar to the one in the RX7, however it did not have a turbo. The 2-rotor engine was a carburetted unit, using a 2-stage carburettor. The single cab truck had a 6-feet long bed at the back for loads of up to 635kg. It came with either a 4-speed manual or 3-speed automatic transmission, without any overdrive gears.
Unfortunately, poor sales of just about 15,000 units in it’s entire 3-year lifespan of between 1974 to 1977 made Mazda decide to discontinue it.