Mazda 767B rotary legend set to hit New Zealand
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No country has quite the crazed passion for the 'spinning Dorito' rotary engine than New Zealand. Engines of its ilk are relative bread and butter in our modified car scene — despite all the screams of 'oil consumption' and 'apex seals' from the peanut gallery.
They rev high, they brap low, and remain a staple at all Japanese-themed car shows and events.
It's no shock of course that they're a prolific feature at 'Mad Mike' Whiddett's Summer Bash events at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park. The casual, open-armed drift event turns three-years-old this year, and Whiddett and Mazda are giving attendees one heck of a present — the chance to see the Mazda 767B in the flesh and on track with Shenji Hoshino behind the wheel.
Not to be mistaken for the 1991 24 Hours of Le Mans winning 787B, the 767B nonetheless helped form the platform of the manufacturer's later circuit-racing success. It's powered by a 470kW quad-rotor 13J engine, and sounds like part Formula 1 car, part plane.
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“The inspiration for my first four-rotor came from Mazda's Le Mans-winning 787B, so it's a real honour to have Hoshino-san bringing this earlier version car down to for the event,” said Whiddett.
“This 767B has run demos at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and the World Time Attack Challenge, so I'm stoked to be able to add Summer Bash to that list.
“We're hoping to have a huge number of rotary-powered cars at the event, and getting them all on the track at the same time is going to be crazy for both the drivers and the spectators.”
The Mad Mike Summer Bash will take place on December 8. The iconic 767B will be joined by a full menu of drift cars and time-attack cars competing in a bunch of different challenges. Included in the machinery will be each of Whiddett's Red Bull drift cars.
We'll be there.