Mazda a faithful old friend

AN advertising line once went “if you’re on a good thing, stick to it”, and Keith Coleman is doing exactly that with his 1982 Mazda 626.

He bought the sedan new in 1983, and it’s still doing the same job for him as it did then.

“I got it from Baker Motors in Tumut,” he said.

“Mazda had a good name, so I thought why not.” He could have been excused for thinking he wouldn’t still be driving it 34 years later, but either way, he’s not bothered.

“I had no idea; you don’t know when you buy them. I keep a car while they go well,” he said.

“It’s as good as the day I bought it. It’s very reliable.

It hasn’t got any rust and it starts easily every time.”

He knows it’s worth more to him than it would be to most people.

“It wouldn’t be worth anything to sell, so while it goes I may as well drive it,” Keith said.

Keith was a grazier near Gundagai before selling his property and moving to the township of Tumut.

“It was garaged on the property and it’s in a car port now,” he said.

The car is powered by a four-cylinder engine through a four-speed manual gearbox.

“I’ve only ever had manuals,” Keith said.

There’s nothing it hasn’t got that Keith really wants, including air conditioning.

“I wouldn’t want it,” he said.

And a radio.

“I could put one in, but I’ve never been bothered.” Not that he’d have much time to listen to it.

“I haven’t put much mileage on it in recent years,” he said.

“I don’t drive out of town much.”