PH Blog: dream ticket?

Chris Harris certainly levered the lid off a can of worms last week with his GT86video! And I’ve been enjoying the pages (and pages … and pages) of debate that have followed.

Less power, more fun - the formula works
Less power, more fun - the formula works
Now, I’m also a fan of the GT86/BRZ. Huge fan. But I also like roadsters and, for my money, much of what Chris said about the charms of the Toyobaru apply also to the MX-5. He and I may differ on that point but there’s room for some sort of MX-5 in my fantasy garage (there’s a ratty old Eunos in my real one!) and in the spirit of ‘it’s not about the numbers’ performance I think a subtly tweaked NC/Mk3 would make a really lovely car.

Nothing mad. Just a bit of stiffening. Some top quality springs/dampers. A little more power and noise from some good, old-fashioned normally-aspirated tuning. I’m thinking throttle bodies and a loud exhaust – turbos and superchargers just don’t seem to be quite in the spirit of it. 200hp or so should do it, a Duratec crate engine from Cosworth (it’s the same engine as the standard ’5s to all intents and purposes) being ideal for the job. A diff, obviously.

Tone the looks down a bit and it's spot on
Tone the looks down a bit and it's spot on
Black-painted wheels and a fairly discreet paintjob, a cage and some race seats and I think I’m about there.

Oh, hang on, that’s exactly what I’m going to be driving tomorrow! Well, apart from the discreet paintjob bit. Yup, that MX-5 GT Concept, a road going interpretation of the production racer I’ve been lucky enough to drive a couple of times, is my ride for tomorrow and I’m about as excited as I’ve ever been about driving a new car. Expectation is a dangerous thing, I realise, but I think cars like this are the answer to what the likes of us want out of our performance cars, especially off the back of a drive last week in the new Boxster. I’ll save that particular missive for later on but, suffice to say, I don’t think we’re quite ready to put the lid back on that can of worms yet!


Comments (11) Join the discussion on the forum

  • GrumpyTwig 21 Aug 2012

    Not sure about the colour but this is more interesting to me than the toyboater ever was.

    Like the new mx5 but the output of the 2.0 in the current range just doesn't cut it, this does smile

  • jamespink 21 Aug 2012

    I used to have an old Peugeot with this kind of colour scheme. Black spray under-seal to hastily applied masking tape to cover all the rust blisters! Very tasteful but its my instant thought when I see the black "bodge" wheel arch and sill edges to this Mazda.

  • LukeBird 21 Aug 2012

    Very interested to see the test on this.
    My dad was chatting to a couple of the engineers on this project whilst waiting in the airport recently. He's a Mk3.5 owner, but having come from a Caterham, has always fancied a little more power...

  • Gorbyrev 21 Aug 2012

    We're excited too Dan. Fact is an MX-5 is cheap enough to do fun things too without making a £50k monster which, I would guess, is out of reach for the average PHer. Just about perfect spec and I even like the orange paint! Does the roof still work?

  • Mr MoJo 21 Aug 2012

    In my humble opinion this is a car Mazda need to put into production. It's exactly what the halo model MX5 should be. A more focused high performance derivative of a proven formula.

    And obviously I'd enjoy having our demo model as my daily drive !!

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