Junkyard Find: 1985 Mazda GLC Hatchback

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1985 mazda glc hatchback

When the Mazda Familia first came to North America, it had rear-wheel-drive, its chassis was very similar to that of an RX-7, and it was called the GLC, for “great little car.” By 1981, the GLC had switched to front-wheel-drive, and later in the decade it became known as the 323. In this series, we’ve seen this ’80 hatch, this ultra-rare ’81 sedan, this ’83 sedan, this ’84 hatchback, and now today’s interestingly decorated ’84. We’ve also seen what’s probably the most original GLC in the country, courtesy of Mazda HQ in California.

The hood is painted with a big star and there are “turbo turtles” on the sides. If this is a popular-culture reference, it’s one I’ve missed.

The 1.5 liter E5 engine was standard equipment in the ’85 GLC.

All in all, a fairly generic mid-80s econo-hatch.

The sedan version was pitched as a high-performance economy car.

In Japan, M. Takanaka did the music for Familia ads.

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  • OzSRV OzSRV on Oct 09, 2014

    I had one as my first car. 1980 Mazda 323 5-door front wheel drive 1.3L 4 speed, must have been one of the first batch of them to be sold here. Like this one: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:1980-1982_Mazda_323_(BD)_5-door_hatchback_01.jpg The interior was blue and a bit less 80s plasticy than later ones like the junkyard find. I kind of regret selling it because it was a fun little run around but I just couldn't use it as a daily driver, and couldn't afford two cars. No A/C on 40 degree (104 f) days took some of the fun away, no overdrive gear on long journeys proved tiresome too.

  • Kjohnson1 Kjohnson1 on Jan 04, 2019

    I owned a 1984 Mazda GLC....what a POS. While researching the car in the public library..I found an advertisement for the car. The ad was bragging about how it had a carburetor with a brain! I don't recall it having a brain..I do however remember it having 158 vacuum hoses. I remember not being able to drive it for 10 miles before having to clean out the EGR valve. Also the link for the most unique GLC..all of the pictures are broken.

  • Bd2 Other way around.Giorgetto Giugiaro penned the Pony Coupe during the early 1970s and later used its wedge shape as the basis for the M1 and then the DMC-12.The 3G Supra was just one of many Japanese coupes to adopt the wedge shape (actually was one of the later ones).The Mitsubishi Starion, Nissan 300ZX, etc.
  • Tassos I also want one of the idiots who support the ban to explain to me how it will work.Suppose sometime (2035 or later) you cannot buy a new ICE vehicle in the UK.Q1: Will this lead to a ICE fleet resembling that of CUBA, with 100 year old '56 Chevys eventually? (in that case, just calculate the horrible extra pollution due to keeping 100 year old cars on the road)Q2: Will people be able to buy PARTS for their old cars FOREVER?Q3: Will people be allowed to jump across the Channel and buy a nice ICE in France, Germany (who makes the best cars anyway), or any place else that still sells them, and then use it in the UK?
  • Tassos Bans are ridiculous and undemocratic and smell of Middle Ages and the Inquisition. Even 2035 is hardly any better than 2030.The ALMIGHTY CONSUMER should decide, not... CARB, preferably WITHOUT the Government messing with the playing field.And if the usual clueless idiots read this and offer the tired "But Government subsidizes the oil industry too", will they EVER learn that those MINISCULE (compared to the TRILLIONS of $ size of this industry) subsidies were designed to help the SMALL Oil producers defend themselves against the "Big Oil" multinationals. Ask ANY major Oil co CEO and he will gladly tell you that you can take those tiny subsidies and shove them.
  • Dusterdude The suppliers can ask for concessions, but I wouldn’t hold my breath . With the UAW they are ultimately bound to negotiate with them. However, with suppliers , they could always find another supplier ( which in some cases would be difficult, but not impossible)
  • AMcA Phoenix. Awful. The roads are huge and wide, with dedicated lanes for turning, always. Requires no attention to what you're doing. The roads are idiot proofed, so all the idiots drive - they have no choice, because everything is so spread out.