This CC Outtake is not about the Valiant per se; I’ve got the ultimate A-Body in the works for that (and we did a Duster 340 already), and it’s coming soon too. This is about what cars are worthy to be considered a Valiant successor. From the looks of this photo, this household thinks highly of the Mazda 626 to supplant the now rarely-used Plymouth. Well, they’re in good company; the 626 cultivated a rep for reliability, right from the beginning. In the eighties and nineties it was held in particularly high regard in Germany, and was the best selling Japanese car for a few years there, in part to its excellent showing in the ADAC Pannenstatistik. It was at the top of that list in 1994 and 1995.
Edward’s first car was a gen1 RWD 626 bought from the St. Vinny’s lot for a couple of hundred bucks. Sadly, it was a sedan and not the rather handsome coupe. It was a tough little beast, and the engines in these vintage Mazdas have a rep of being every bit the equal of Toyota’s R20 and R22 for indestructibility. Old Mazda pickups with that torquey but only 75 horsepower producing engine are still in ample supply on the streets hereabouts. It was definitely a Valiant ersatz-mobile. The later ones I don’t have much experience with. Anybody?