Jul 24, 2008 update to the Mazda Miata Turbo project car

Turbo Terror

Tom strictly obeys the 25 mph speed limit.

Despite the commuter-grade rubber and 130,000-mile fresh suspension components, the Miata performed beautifully.

We took our freshly turbocharged 1994 R-package Miata out for some exercise at a local autocross last weekend. We were disappointed when the other drivers we were expecting in our class didn’t make it to the event, but we had a hell of a good time on course in their absence. This was mostly a toe-in-the-water exercise, since the car was still sporting tires left over from the budget tire test.

Despite the commuter-grade rubber and 130,000-mile fresh suspension components, the Miata performed beautifully. The power delivery from the Flyin’ Miata turbo kit felt very linear and easy to control. It allowed for the same throttle-steering fun of the stock roadster, but multiplied by a factor of five. Our challenge was to adjust our driving to take best advantage of the turbo power.

Thanks to a lack of competition, we took a first-place trophy by default. We were more gratified by our place on the PAX index results: We landed somewhere around the 40th percentile. With lots of room for improvement in both technique and preparation, we’re already chomping at the bit for some more seat time.

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