For $30K: A New Ford Maverick, or This 1,800-Mile 1986 Mazda B2000 Pickup?

It’s a battle of old vs. new, but the Maverick still starts at $8,000 less.

byNico DeMattia| PUBLISHED Aug 9, 2022 2:13 PM
For $30K: A New Ford Maverick, or This 1,800-Mile 1986 Mazda B2000 Pickup?
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Simple, honest pickup trucks are making a comeback, as evidenced by the new Ford Maverick's immense popularity. If that's your style, you're not going to find a simpler no-frills workhorse than this perfectly preserved 1986 Mazda B2000 that’s for sale at a Minnesota dealership. The thing is, it's far from cheap, even when you compare it to new trucks.

Walser Polar Mazda wants $29,998 for it, meaning it costs a lot more than a base Ford Maverick. Is it worth that? In my eyes, it's tough to say.

Admittedly, it's a cool truck that's in pristine condition. With only 1,952 miles on the odometer, this Mazda B2000 has averaged only 54 miles per year. It also represents the first year of the fourth-generation B-Series pickups, which is among the most highly desirable for fans of these little guys.

It was built in Hiroshima, Japan, on a ladder frame chassis with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a five-speed manual transmission. The B2000 was rear-wheel-drive-only in North America, as you had to upgrade to the B2600 for four-wheel drive.

You could get one with either a short bed or a long bed; this B2000 has the latter, making it a bit more practical than something like a Maverick. But that's really the B2000's only tangible advantage over a brand-new compact truck.

Inside this classic Mazda, you don't get many luxuries for your $30,000. This B2000 has a bench seat, manual roll-up windows, air conditioning, a radio, seatbelts, and that’s about it. Admittedly, there's a certain charm to that spartan simplicity. There’s no learning curve to this truck, no digging through menus to change driving modes, and no touchscreens to fiddle with. You just turn the key and drive. And don’t even get me started on that radio. I’m tempted to fly to Minnesota just so I can push those delightfully rectangular buttons. 

All that said, for around $8,000 less, you can get a brand-new Maverick that has power windows, power door locks, Apple CarPlay, phone chargers, cup holders, a hybrid powertrain, modern safety equipment, and a warranty.

Interestingly, this B2000 has bounced around a bit over the past few years, and it seems people are willing to spend decent money on it. In 2018, it was sold at auction twice: once on Bring a Trailer for $13,750 and once at the Barrett Jackson Scottsdale auction for $20,900. While the Minnesota dealership's $29,998 asking price is a bit higher than what the truck last sold for, it's within a reasonably negotiable amount for a potential buyer. And as silly as market prices may seem to many of us, a car really is worth whatever people are willing to pay for it.

So there's some precedent of people paying decent money for this very pickup truck. Does that make it worth more than a modern compact pickup, especially when trucks like the Maverick are so good? To you or me, probably not. But will a nostalgic collector find it worth the money? Maybe.