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mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/1/12 2:15 p.m.

There doesn't seem to be a repository for information on the Mazda2 around here. Sure, there are bits of info here and there, but what would be sweet, would be one thread to put it all down on. This could go two ways. 1. This will explode into Mazda2 awesomeness with multiple owners taking about actocrossing and track driving and what tires and alignment setting they've used and some B-Spec racers chiming it. 2. It could end up just being be posting about my car and everyone ignoring the guy who bought a 100hp car but loves it anyway.
So, now that I've had my car for 6 days and 322 miles, I love it. The gearing on the 1-2 shift is too far apart though. I'm trying to figure out if I had 400rpm more if it would be better. I think so, I might see about getting that pesky rev limiter moved. I finally put gas in it, I shouldn't have. It turns out that I had plenty in there to autocross on Sunday but still being on the first tank, I didn't know that. Damn. It the car was filled up when new, then I got 39 mpg on the first tank. Hard to say when it was filled all the way up though it only had 23 miles on it when I took delivery and all but 10 of those were my test drive. I'll get better fuel statistics as it goes along.
Autocross on Sunday at the Houston Police Academy. Stock stock stock. We'll call this a baseline run and see how it does. I haven't driven in anger in 8 years, so I need a little refresher.
I'll update this as I progress with the car. Maybe it will end up being a full B-Spec car? Maybe just a fun kid hauler. Anyone else with any Mazda2 related information feel free to add on in a coherent or completely random fashion. It's a fun car.

DukeOfUndersteer
DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
3/1/12 2:41 p.m.

I want a Mazda 2 with the badness!

I recently got to sit in one, didnt personally like where the shifter sits, but i can work myself around it. Something about it, might be the graphics set, i dunno, but I want one. Bad.

Would it be competitive in B Spec? Anyones guess. I know the Kias are pretty strong.

poopshovel
poopshovel SuperDork
3/1/12 2:58 p.m.

Glad you dig it! I wish I would've driven one before I bought the Fit. Difference in resale scared me away, but the difference in price up front may have been worth it. I'd still like to test drive one next time I'm near a Mazda stealership. Weird that you mention the 1-2 gear split. It's one of the things I love most about the Fit. Feels like it actually has some power for those first few seconds. Then you hit third.

singleslammer
singleslammer GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/1/12 4:13 p.m.

I really like these little cars but at moment I am not in a position to pick one up. Also, I'm torn because I'm pretty sure there will be either a MS version or a skyactive version.

pete240z
pete240z SuperDork
3/1/12 4:19 p.m.

GRM stated it is a 4 door Miata. Or maybe they didn't say that....

Zomby woof
Zomby woof SuperDork
3/1/12 4:21 p.m.
pete240z wrote: GRM stated it is just another 4 door

I think that's what they wanted to say.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/1/12 4:51 p.m.
singleslammer wrote: I really like these little cars but at moment I am not in a position to pick one up. Also, I'm torn because I'm pretty sure there will be either a MS version or a skyactive version.

I would bet there will be something hotter/better in the future too. When I learned to drive in 1990 you had to look back in time for better cars. I had little optimism that next years cars were going to be much better than the gutless junk we were offered so I yearned for old stuff. Now things are just so good and they keep getting better and it's easy to just wait and wait and wait.
I'm not sure if it's a four door miata, but it is light on its feet and it's a joy to pitch around corners. I love that I can drive like a bit of a hoon and still not be going 'fast'. Minivans cas out accelerate me while I'm working hard banging gears and reveling in shifting at 6000rpm. I haven't had this much fun driving since my 1982 Volvo 245 with a four speed. That car was pure joy in slow motion.

poopshovel
poopshovel SuperDork
3/1/12 7:01 p.m.

An MS version would most likely have me trading in the fit tomorrow. I would have to think an extra 50 or so HP would make that thing a blast to drive.

belteshazzar
belteshazzar SuperDork
3/1/12 8:06 p.m.

how is the throttle response? so many modern cars seem disconnected at the gas pedal, and the rpms hang when you let off.

pete240z
pete240z SuperDork
3/1/12 8:18 p.m.
belteshazzar wrote: how is the throttle response? so many modern cars seem disconnected at the gas pedal, and the rpms hang when you let off.

My 5-speed Honda accord does this. I keep thinking I don't know how to shift.

poopshovel
poopshovel SuperDork
3/1/12 9:03 p.m.
belteshazzar wrote: how is the throttle response? so many modern cars seem disconnected at the gas pedal, and the rpms hang when you let off.

On-throttle is fine. Off-throttle (between shifts) is weird. You have to yank your foot off the throttle quickly. I have not heard my wife drive the car yet. This is probably a good thing.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/2/12 7:20 a.m.

You know, it might hang a bit now that you make me think about it. I've gotten used to my wife's fj cruiser over the past two years (shifting on that is a matter of throttle off....wait....shift) and the 2 is way better than that. I still find myself with more rpm than I think I need up shifting though and have to think about the throttle timing much more than I used to. I wonder if this is fixable with tuning? Anyone have any experience or rumor with fixing this through 1's and 0's?

pete240z
pete240z SuperDork
3/2/12 8:20 a.m.

There is a GRM advertiser that offers a peddle hardware change. It is even available for my accord.

www.sprintboosterusa.com

singleslammer
singleslammer GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/2/12 8:54 a.m.

Well, indecision no more! Brought home a slightly used 2 last night to pair up with my other 2 (MR2 Spyder). I now own two of the lightest weight production cars made in the last 15 years.

Alan Cesar
Alan Cesar Associate Editor
3/2/12 10:51 a.m.
pete240z wrote: GRM stated it is a 4 door Miata. Or maybe they didn't say that....

From our new car review: "The 'Deuce' has direct steering with good feedback, an agile chassis that likes to rotate, and a shifter that feels more MX-5 Miata than econobox." I think that's as close as we got to that, at least in ones-and-zeros medium.

http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/new-cars/2011-107-2-touring/

Related, though with no Miata references, was the unofficial Deuce project car: http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/project-cars/2011-107-mazda2/

amg_rx7
amg_rx7 HalfDork
3/2/12 12:24 p.m.

I wish the 2 had a 6th gear for better highway cruising. I'm holding out hoping the next one will.

Or that Mazda produces a new 3 with a better looking front end and a 6 speed.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/2/12 1:32 p.m.
amg_rx7 wrote: I wish the 2 had a 6th gear for better highway cruising. I'm holding out hoping the next one will. Or that Mazda produces a new 3 with a better looking front end and a 6 speed.

I'm not sure it would help with 100hp. Not enough motor for a higher gear. Mileage really starts to fall off after 65 even though it can cruise at 75 comfortably, if a bit buzzy. It really reminds me of the 80s hatches from back when speed limits were 55. They'd all go 80, but they wanted to cruise at 58 all day.
Repainted my autocross numbers today. Very excited for sunday.

amg_rx7
amg_rx7 HalfDork
3/2/12 2:20 p.m.
mazdeuce wrote:
amg_rx7 wrote: I wish the 2 had a 6th gear for better highway cruising. I'm holding out hoping the next one will. Or that Mazda produces a new 3 with a better looking front end and a 6 speed.
I'm not sure it would help with 100hp. Not enough motor for a higher gear. Mileage really starts to fall off after 65 even though it can cruise at 75 comfortably, if a bit buzzy. It really reminds me of the 80s hatches from back when speed limits were 55. They'd all go 80, but they wanted to cruise at 58 all day. Repainted my autocross numbers today. Very excited for sunday.

Yep. That is exactly what I was thinking of. The constant buzz can get annoying after a while on longer drives. Same thing in the Miata. Usually cruising at 75-85 on highways around here.

93EXCivic
93EXCivic SuperDork
3/2/12 2:23 p.m.

I really want to see GRM compare one with a 500.

integraguy
integraguy SuperDork
3/2/12 3:03 p.m.

Here's a "tidbit" for you, in other markets you can get a Mazda2 as a 3 door. You can also get it with a turbodiesel in other markets. "Claimed" fuel economy for the turbodiesel is about 1/3rd better than the gas version's claimed fuel economy.

http://www.mazda.co.uk

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
3/2/12 3:50 p.m.
93EXCivic wrote: I really want to see GRM compare one with a 500.

We've had both around the office. The 500 is way more stylish and "cute", but the Mazda 2 is the better / more sporting driver. The "Deuce" is an amazingly entertaining ride for what it is. The backend will even rotate in corners!

The 500 is pleasant, and nice, but not nearly as much fun to drive.

Now the Abarth.........that will be a different ball of wax.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/2/12 4:18 p.m.

The deuce also seats three in back, the 500 only two. That may not matter for some, but I have 4 kids. The deuce can be pressed into service to haul the whole herd, but the 500 can't. I'm sure I'm in the minority with this sort of requirement in a tiny car, but the back seat really is quite large across the hips. I can fit two booster seats back there and still have room between them to cram my 10 year old. They may not be super comfy, but they're safe and legal.

Keith_Goodrich
Keith_Goodrich New Reader
3/2/12 6:24 p.m.

We bought one in May of last year and love it. It was going to be my wife's car to replace the caravan that spun a bearing. Now I am driving it every day and loving it.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/5/12 11:53 a.m.

Drove the deuce in my first autocross in 8 years yesterday. I drove.... badly. I entered in HS but their computer put me in DS and because I re-qualify as a rookie I got thrown into the rookie PAX class with a DS PAX. With the DS PAX I was 15 out of 18, the HS or STF PAX would have put me 10th. I would have lost HS or STF badly. Very badly. Everything on course happened much much faster than I remember it from back in the day. I did the course walk with the rookie group which was a mistake. Walking in a sea of people (30+ rookies) prevented me from learning anything about the course. Consequently I was pretty confused for all four runs. I even got briefly lost on my second run for my first time ever. It took until my fourth run until I sort of had a run that wasn't really confusing. I need a lot more practice. A lot.
The car was great, fantastic even. On stock tires at 40 psi it was as forgiving as a car can be. The few corners I drove properly were a treat. Perfectly balanced and ready for the next corner long before my brain was ready to make a decision about it. When I went in too hot and overdrove the tires it gently tapped me on the shoulder and let me know I was an idiot. When it was heavily understeering, it was because I forced it through stupidity, not because it wanted too. I really need to re-learn driving smooth and gentle. I want so badly to run out and get new wheels and sticky tires and a whole new suspension. Then I won't overdrive it because the limits will be higher! Right?! Yea, I need to calm down and learn how to look ahead and read and remember a course. I need practice much more than I need to change anything on the car.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce New Reader
3/6/12 11:19 a.m.

I've convinced myself that I need to leave tires and suspension stock for a few months while I learn how to drive again, but I have to do something to the car or I'm going to go bonkers. It's got 400 miles on it, something needs to be changed.
I've decided I'm going to run STF with the car, so off to the rulebook. It appears that I can change the battery for anything 12v. I pulled the battery and got this: The absolute accuracy of this should be doubted, but the battery is in the range of 26 lbs. Any suggestions for a very light battery? I've only got 1.5 liters of fury here, I'm pretty sure I could hand crank it and get it to start.
Now for alignment. It's pretty clear I'm going to eventually need more front camber and with no camber plates that I can find for sale anywhere, I ordered a set of $25 crash bolts from ebay. I can either pay someone to set my alignment or I can finally get off my but and figure out how to do it myself. I don't like paying people and I like new tools, so the answer is obvious. Should I just buck up and get some Longacre stuff or is there a better (cheaper) option?

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