Thursday, September 15, 2016

A Tale of Two Trucks: 1991 Isuzu vs 1996 Mazda

Today's next two cars come from Matt C who writes: First, we have an Isuzu Hombre with a small block Chevy swap, for only $900. Of course, there is a catch. "Knock knock, who's there?" "Rod." "Rod who?" "Rod bearings..." But at least you have all the parts needed to put the engine - or a better smallblock - back in place once that's fixed. ext is a very strange Mazda build... is Looney Labor Day over yet? Let's take a closer look and see which of these two pickups is the pick-me-up that you need!

First under our microscope is the Isuzu Hombre, which offered for $900 seems like a good deal -- flat black and paint and all -- until you read the fine print and see:  Runs and drives but it needs a new rod bearing, it's knocking. Stopped driving it whenever it did and towed it home.  Round one goes to the Mazda B2300 because it might have a functioning engine...Might, because the seller doesn't explicitly say that. Regardless it has a crazy dual-rear axle setup out back and a Mercury Mountaineer front end swap...who'da thunk that a Mercury front end would ever be bondo-ed onto the front of a Mazda.  Hellaflush air ride setup looks like it works...but at $4000, I'm starting to thing that Mr H-Rod might be a better deal.

Gun to your head -- which one do you pick?  Comments below.


  1. I'd go with the Isuzu; getting the engine in there the first time is the hardest.

    I suspect the Mountaineer front clip is a bolt on since both the Mountaineer and the B2300 share a chassis, but I'm not sure why anyone bothered to confirm that. Not quite my cup of tea; a six wheeled truck can be interesting, but I'd want to leave the bed free of compressors and other items so as to actually use all of the extra bed length (and, theoretically, extra weight capacity).

  2. I agree with Matt, a $500 Craigslist SBC and a weekend or two and you're in business with the Isuzu. The dual axle Mazda is interesting though...

  3. I have a soft spot for Isuzus, so the Isuzu for sure.

    I thought the Hombre wasn't offered until the later 90's. Isn't this one a Pu'p?

  4. There were guys in my HS with B2000 that had tilt beds filled with subwoofers. So great. Always have thought that "mini trucks" were pretty neat.

    Speaking of Isuzus how great are these?


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