Yeah well I've always wanted a Jap car, and still do. The thing is that while E-Series fuel costs can be annoying, with an import you can be slugged with a bill the price of 3 EAs just like that. There's a thread in another forum about the Mazda 626/Telstar V6, and someone said that a basic engine rebuild is a $4000 job. And that's just a DOHC V6, not a turbo car. I'm not sure how true this is, but I once read that a worst case scenario engine replacement on an '80s Honda Legend V6 costs $14k.
People around here go nuts about having to spend $700 on a head gasket, and it certainly is annoying when you probably wouldn't get the same kind of issue in a Jap car, and any car of this age will have pretty frequent reliability issues. But we could do much worse for ourselves!
I'd look into comparative insurance costs as well, well worth researching. Let us know how you go, it might not be so bad... :s5
Jack Travis, E-Series Acting President
1989 Ford Fairmont Ghia turbo/GL replica (underway)
1994 Eunos 800M
1990 Ford Laser S