fidelity101 (Forum Supporter)
fidelity101 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
7/29/20 12:32 p.m.

I have a story that only GRM could appreciate and for me to move on I need to write this out.

So rewind to sometime to 2017 where this all begins for me…. I was looking for a very specific car to do all my daily driving and work related auotmobiling and general errands, I thought I wasn’t asking for too much and I wanted something nice and simple as the tow truck and race car were enough problems so was looking for a Mazda6. Seems easy right?  Well I wanted 3 pedals, I wanted leather and I specifically wanted beige (black n tan) leather (because regardless if it’s a black interior car the roof and pillars are still beige) with no red/black/gray exterior color. That left me with one trim option touring: Sport is cloth only and grand touring is auto only. During this time I was daily driving the big block suburban

2012 mazda6 ford fusion dull last of the GH model year (my dad has a 2011 actually) no picture needed.

2013-2014 model year had been a big step forward coming out of the shadows for mazda, still very FoMoCo underneath but was a real nice head turner and a sign of good things to come. However the dashboards were less than desirable and the infotainment screen was pretty inept.  

2016 model year comes and they go to the floating ipad dash style and things are looking more sleak but e-brake becomes truely "E" and the cable handle is dropped. 

But then in 2017

They updated the steering wheel assembly and it no longer looks like buttons are out place or some cheap ford wheel that wears funny. (because they did) only downside to this bump is that stability control cannot be turned off but im not hooning FWD so no big deal. 

But in 2018 we have this glorious major facelift but the leather seats aren’t as comfortable:

(steering wheel is the same as the 2017 model but the rest of the HVAC and dash/infotainment have been reworked)

But this doesn’t matter because with the new body style, there is no longer a manual transmission with leather combination. So for me all the new mazda6s are null and void unfortunately.  Due to the desired options I needed to have a 2017 model year only as this was the last year of stick/leather combo with comfortable seats and a nice steering wheel, this to me was the best of the best. Bonus points if I can get it in white.

This kicks off an 18 month search for this car where I would daily check with a bookmarked filter for this exact combo they would pop up sometimes but I would miss out on 2 other cars I called on during this time (listings were up less than a week) too until ultimately I got to cross off an automotive bucketlist of mine and this past January I flew to Baltimore and drove it back to the Metro Detroit area to buy a car sight unseen. I was determined

The gentleman I bought it from was retiring and moving back to England, the house was sold and this was the last thing he had major in his name, they were staying at a family friends house, he had 10 days left to leave the country and I was ready to buy.

The car is fantastic and everything I could have hoped for and worked for, I did my daily driver basic mods, window tint, set of winter wheels/tires (OEM 17” wheels too), trailer hitch for the bike rack picked it up with 25k on it, it only had a few dents in the hood but overall condition was still excellent, still smells like new and I’ve had rental cars with more miles then on it than this.


So how rare exactly is this? I ran the numbers and ballparked figures based on whats available for sale on the typical channels (numbers are approx.) and worked the numbers backwards from there.  

34,000 mazda6’s were sold in the USA for that model year (all trims)

10% of the total mazda6’s were offered here with a manual transmission 3,400 in total

Now only 10% of those were leather and manual transmission, 340 in total and maybe only 10% of those were beige leather.

Beige was much less production numbers than the black leather manual transmission combo which equated to roughly .2% of the 34k original total so roughly less than 70 were produced that year with this combination

Let alone out of the 5 different colors available, less than 20 were probably white exterior… and now there is one less.


Now here we are, exactly 6 months of ownership to the day.


Guy rear ends me waiting to turn on my street to be home from work (typical clerks, I wasn’t even supposed to be here today dilemma! As it was my 2nd day “back in the office”) at about 45mph with a dodge truck towing a small boat, I managed to get it in gear and try and try to escape but I heard the tires lock/screech and here we are. Luckily I’m okay but sore with only soft tissue damage (chiropractor stuff) so over the past 2 weeks I have been dealing with several insurance groups and departments and companies and it’s a big clusterberkeley because its Michigan and it’s a no fault state. They total the car and I have to negotiate the value in which I explain this story to the adjuster but is felt on deaf ears and get passed to their settlement team and we eventually agree on a proper value and the check is in the mail however this car will not be replaced or fixed and was picked up by copart to continue the payout process:


Due to dealing with all this insurance stuff and trying not to get screwed I did what any sane GRMer would do. Throw on some rollers from your dead car, try and sell the OEM wheels for some extra cash on the side and keep a little souvenir for yourself, Afterall they are going total the car and have it end up in a junkyard right? Well I did that and went one step further


Why not keep the passenger seat for a nice memory of a lovely car, besides the gaming chair for the simulator could use an improvement. All this comes at a bad time because I’m midway through replacing the failed big block with a good big block engine so with the rx8 powertrainless and with jack stands and the only functioning vehicle being an rx7 rally car things can be really annoying.



this was supposed to be my forever car. 



John Welsh (Moderate Supporter)
John Welsh (Moderate Supporter) Mod Squad
7/29/20 1:24 p.m.

Sorry to hear.  The damage looks worse in the Copart pictures.  Maybe because the trunk lid has been pried open.    Also in the Copart pictures, what wheels are on the car?  Staggered set of RX8?  

fidelity101 (Forum Supporter)
fidelity101 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
7/29/20 1:36 p.m.

In reply to John Welsh (Moderate Supporter) :

im surprised the rear passenger door shut, but it completely closed the body gap when you did, a tarp was hard to fit without a good slam...

yeah the wheels are from my rx8, regular S1 style with dead blizzaks on them: 


current view from my office...


this poor car is always get back burnered. 

CyberEric Dork
7/29/20 1:39 p.m.

Oh man, what a great car, I love those. Sorry to see it go! 

I’m glad you weren’t seriously hurt. 

I hope it doesn’t take as long to find another, if that’s the direction you go.

fidelity101 (Forum Supporter)
fidelity101 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
7/29/20 1:50 p.m.

In reply to CyberEric :

thanks, I gotta give modern cars credit to their safety, if I was in an older vehicle things could have been different and bad.

I don't think I will look for one with all the COVID stuff going around there is a lack of a need of onsite customer visits since nobody will let anyone in the office so my need for a nice driver car has gone wayside, due the unreliability of my GM truck I am fixing to sell it once finish the motor swap and use the combined funds to buy a new truck for me that I will just daily for a year or two and see whats out there, maybe a ~5$K mazda6 cloth 2013+? Possibly a suzuki SX4?


06HHR (Forum Supporter)
06HHR (Forum Supporter) Dork
7/29/20 7:55 p.m.

Bummer, glad you are ok.

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito PowerDork
7/29/20 8:17 p.m.

Man, that sucks. I'm sorry that happened, because I know how rare those are. At least you are ok!

When you do shop for a replacement, I would steer clear of the 2013-earlier 6's. Those are the ones that have the magical disappearing front subframes. 


Floating Doc (Forum Supporter)
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UberDork
7/29/20 8:18 p.m.

Sad, really sad.

fidelity101 (Forum Supporter)
fidelity101 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
7/30/20 9:06 a.m.
Tony Sestito said:

Man, that sucks. I'm sorry that happened, because I know how rare those are. At least you are ok!

When you do shop for a replacement, I would steer clear of the 2013-earlier 6's. Those are the ones that have the magical disappearing front subframes. 


originally I was looking for 14+ but then went down the rabbit hole of minor details (interior stuff) but good to know! I am always iffy on new model/platform 1st year quality/longevity but this still seems heavy CD platform with a little more blush and lipstick than normal. 



now that you mention this, I need to check on my dad's 2011 next time I visit and make sure his doesn't disappear! 

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