(This may be a long read, my apologies)
Like many, I first got into cars at a young age. Whether you were into Hot Wheels/Match Box, scalextric, die cast models, video games, TV shows or movies, it was something that you were hooked on and loved. Growing up we all dreamt of having a fast car and making it our own. The dream comes real when you pass your driving test and purchase your first car. I’ve had a couple of projects along the way, but nothing compared this this Mazda MX5.
It started off as a stock 1.6 basic spec Mk1 in Japan. Richard who purchased it originally had modified it extensively and used the car in competition. With a Garage Vary body kit, Garage Vary vented bonnet (or hood to my American readers), safety cage, stripped interior, centre exit exhaust and twin carbs in the engine bay.
The car was painted in Honda Amethyst while over there in around the 2000-2001 era. The carpets and all trim were removed and the floor had a coating of paint too. Richard had nicknamed the car ‘The Purple Monster‘ and the name had stuck ever since.
The car oozed with what we consider rare parts here in the UK. From the St Mays exhaust,to the Quantum coilovers to the Zoom fuel lid.
My previous MX5 project came to an end when it caught fire in Sept 2013. A couple of good friends in the MX5 Community had purchased The Purple Monster in April and had returned it back to stock. I took delivery of the car a couple of weeks later and the new project began.
The car had mis-matched coloured panels, no interior and no roof (luckily I had the hard top from the previous car). The paint work needed attention but it was straight. I may not have been a looker,but the main thing was its solid underneath.
Over the past 4 years the car has gone through a number of transformations. From different wheels to different bumpers to performance changes. The first major job was a full respray, I decided to keep with the legacy and used the same shade of Honda Amethyst Purple. Its gone from stock to stance car to track inspired, who knows what look it’ll have next!
I wasn’t able to do all of this by myself. The paint work was done by Auto Doc while any major componant changes were fulfilled by H&S Performance. Driftworks supplied me with HSD Dual Tech Coilovers and a set of Work Meister S1 wheels.
Garage Vary Bonnet, Garage Vary Rear Panel and LED lights, Zoom side repeaters, Zoom Fuel Lid, Mazdaspeed A-Spec Bumper are just some of the rare JDM parts on the car’s exterior.
The interior was re trimmed by All-Trims which includes the seats,doorcards,transmission tunnel and parcel shelf. Jass Performance have supplied numerous parts for both interior and exterior. Their quality and attention to detail is incredible aswell as their customer service and delivery times!
The interior has a few Mazdaspeed goodies too. The keen eye may have spotted the freshly trimmed steering wheel with the Trap Timer,along with a carbon sleeved gear shifter and floor mats. RevLimiter designed and made my dial faces which are hugged by some RS Refine Rings and AWD Dial Surround. The stack of AEM gauges in the centre helps me make sure the car is in tip top form and can soon give me an early indication whether something is wrong.
It’s only been the last year or so where the car went down the track inspired look. Garage Star in the USA supplied the wing stands and carbon fibre Megan Racing spoiler. The diffuser is from a Lotus Exige which I modified to fit. To take inspiration from the car back in Japan, I had J’s Garage fabricate a bespoke centre exhaust to fill the diffuser.
Spring this year just before the Modified Nationals show, I had Unique Signs Norwich fit a half body wrap,inspired by the HKS Livery (which was originally designed by Infamous Designs). I incorporated the companies who had helped with the build, as a thank you for all their help.
Mazda produced a short run of Mazdaspeed B-Specs which came with a Jackson Racing Supercharger. Having previously turbocharging an MX5 I wanted to try something different. I used an Eaton MP45 Supercharger with a KAVs 15% reduction pulley. Accompanied with a TR Lane inlet,outlet,engine bracket and tensioner bracket and an over the radiator intercooler setup. Fuelling is supplied by RX8 420cc Injectors and its all controlled by a Megasquirt V2 supplied by MSLabs.
Its currently producing 204hp at the Flywheel and approx 180lbft. Of course its not the fastest thing on the road,but its quick for what it is and most of all its reliable 🙂
There’s still a few things in the pipeline for the car (a project car is never finished)
Thank you for reading