More oomph for Mazda's brilliant MX-5
REGULAR readers will know we are fully signed-up members of the Mazda MX-5 fan club here in Drive, writes William Scholes.
The little roadster's carefully balanced blend of handling, tactility, performance and liveability is nigh on perfect, and there are few better ways to have fun on the road.
There is a fierce debate among enthusiasts about whether Mazda has got the power-to-fun factor just right or if, in fact, the MX-5 would be even more enjoyable with a few more horsepower available under the driver's right foot.
Personally, I tend to think Mazda has got it spot-on, but nor did a bit of extra power ever hurt...
Tuning company BBR has a long history of tuning the Mazda MX-5, and it has just announced a 'Super 200' package for the 2.0-litre version of the latest model.
In exchange for £2,195 plus VAT, BBR will give your dinky Mazda a thrusting 205bhp and 180lb/ft of torque, figures which give the MX-5 a 0-60mph time of 5.6 seconds.
Further upgrades mean that 214bhp and 183lb/ft can be found from the engine. According to Mazda, the standard 2.0-litre makes 158bhp and 148lb/ft, though BBR's own testing has found showroom-fresh car's usually produce 160bhp and 153lb/ft.
The performance boost comes courtesy of bespoke intake and exhaust camshafts, upgraded valve springs, a tailored 'four-into-one' tuned stainless steel exhaust manifold and a specially developed cold air intake system.
The MX-5 also gets revised ECU software, and the Super 200 package joins BBR's existing Super 190 upgrade.
Chassis tweaks are also offered, including sports suspension with Koni adjustable dampers, Eiback adjustable anti-roll bars and Willwood four-piston brake callipers.
It's nice to know that all this is possible; but maybe the MX-5 is just fine the way Mazda intended it to be...