2016
07.26

Have you upgraded your intercooler or are you thinking about it in the future? Let’s face it; when you remove the OEM intercooler cover and the TMIC from your engine bay, it leaves behind a rather utilitarian-looking motor with four exposed coil packs, a pile of wires, and sensors, which are not pleasing to the eye. We have the solution for your Mazdaspeed.

Mazdaspeed 3 coil cover engineMost people just deal with the plain-looking engine, but not you. Our Mazdaspeed engine cover is manufactured from 5052 aluminum and texture powder coated in black for a clean look. It will survive being pressure washed and is made to be durable and guaranteed to clean up the look of your engine bay.

Mazdaspeed 3 engine cover radiator panel

Our Mazdaspeed engine cover is CAD designed specifically for the Mazdaspeed DISI MZR engine bay, so it’ll look like it should have been there from Mazda. Whether you drive a 2007–2013 Mazdaspeed 3 or 2006–2007 Mazdaspeed 3, you need to order this for your engine bay today.

Derrick Ambrose, CorkSport, Mazda

2016
07.21

Upon landing in Portland for a summer vacation, I was welcomed with a Mazda MX-5 ND equipped with every goody CorkSport offers — lowering springs, sway bars, intake, exhaust, and a short shifter to top it off.

Mazda MX-5 | CorkSport

Whenever I’ve driven a modified car in the past, I generally regretted driving it on the street due to the harsh nature of the car. This was not the case with the tastily modified ND. After driving it for about a week on the streets of Vancouver and highways in Portland, I got a feel for how each piece affected the car’s ride and overall driving experience.

First impression: holy torque! I hadn’t driven the Mazda MX-5 ND in a while and forgot how zippy it feels around town. This is purely the stock nature of the car, as the tune is stock while the intake and exhaust offer minimal gains down low. I do love the sound the exhaust gives; it’s throaty and doesn’t drone, except for a small window of rpm, but not for a constant period of time.

By far the most noticeable part was the short shifter. From the factory, shifting almost felt artificial with how light and numb the shift knob was during shifts. The short shifter connects the knob to the transmission and provides not only shorter throws, but also better mechanical feel. In my opinion, the shift feel on the ND was the best of the bunch due to its ability to make quick and accurate shifts. This now surpasses that with ease. Each shift gives you an engaging feeling so you know you are in the correct gear.

Short Shifter | CorkSport

The addition of lowering springs on the stock struts combined with the sway bar made the car more nimble without adding any harshness. The original non-club edition suspension felt a bit spongey and lazy to respond. While it provided great ride quality, you are looking to put your hands on the road in a Miata to feel each pebble and peace of asphalt. The added springs and sway bars gave the car amazing feel and responsiveness, and firmed up the ride without making it anywhere near bone-jarring. With the original strut valving, the increased spring rate gave the car support while maintaining forgiving damping. This is how the non-club edition should come from the factory.

The only thing I didn’t like about CorkSport’s modifications was the slight drone of the exhaust. To be fair, they do list the cat-back exhaust on their webpage as follows: “The exhaust is loud. If you think you are unsure that this might be too loud, then this is not the exhaust for you.” However, the sound it produced by far surpassed the downfall of the drone, which isn’t bad to begin with. Most impressive was the shifter. It sounds funny, but it gave me the connection to the car that was lacking with the stock one. That said, the first things I would buy are the lowering springs and sways bars, with the short shifter soon after.

Kenton Koch is a young racing professional from Glendora, CA with a 72% win record and a focus on Mazda models.

Kenton Koch | CorkSport

2016
07.19

First things first, we took a different path on the CX-3 springs. We know most people are looking for that “look,” and the CX-3 really comes through from Mazda with great design and styling. The only miss that is really evident is the wheel gap.

CX3 Lowering Springs | CorkSport

Before we decided on changes to the CX-3, we drove one around for a while and found that the OEM spring rates are pretty firm from the factory. If you compared this to the 2016 Miata — where it feels like the car will roll over — this car feels like a race car. The normal path we take is to find the limits on the handling and work to remove understeer from the vehicle by adjusting spring rates. For the CX-3, we decided to lower the car for a styling component instead of messing with the handling.

CX3 Lowering Springs | CorkSport

The CorkSport Sport Springs provide a drop of 1.9 inches in front and 1.8 inches in the rear. This provides an aggressive look without worrying about every speed bump or parking lot entrance. Best of all, they are invisible from the normal CX-3 handling once installed.

CX3 Lowering Springs | CorkSport

We have to admit, lowered is much better on this CX-3 model, and we feel all of you CX-3 enthusiasts out there will agree.

-Derrick

Derrick Ambrose CorkSport Mazda Performance

2016
06.16

Masahiro Moro, president of Mazda USA, recently called the Mazdaspeed 3 “childish” in execution. Most press took this as a kiss of death for the car and speculated that we might never see the model in the market again. I tend to agree. The “Mazdaspeed” brand looks like it’s on the way out the door, but not the performance model itself. I’ll explain.

Mazdaspeed | CorkSport

Two years back, I noticed that the Mazda prototypes stopped carrying the Mazdaspeed name. All the gear of the factory-backed teams had their logos only as “Mazda.” I inquired about the shift and was told it was just a change to the requirements for pro racing, and that club racing would still keep the Mazdaspeed name. It made sense to me at the time, and I didn’t think too much more about it until the announcement came out this year that 2016 will be the last year the Mazdaspeed logos are used on club racing cars. Mazda wants all its cars to simply use “Mazda” for all logos in all areas of racing in 2017. The removal of the “Mazdaspeed” from racing is a big shift in branding as it’s always existed here in the U.S. and Japan.

What makes me think we’re still going to get the great performance models we all love is the recent news that came out about Mazda’s G-Vectoring Control (GVC). I’m not a fan of “vehicle nannies,” but this one sounds interesting to the racer in me. The GVC uses slight variations in torque sent to the front wheels to reduce the need for steering corrections and lateral acceleration on the driver. The constantly variable torque applied to the front wheels allows the car to maintain a steady cornering speed, which Mazda says helps improve driving dynamics. The setup is made to put extra weight on the tire contact patch of the front wheels, which would generate more grip.

I can see two uses for GVC in a performance model: 1) In the Mazdaspeed 3, accelerating in corners can be exciting with the torque it develops, which now requires lifting the throttle to keep from driving off the road. Being able to control the torque with GVC, you could maintain a steady speed, which would increase your acceleration through the corner. 2) I could also see GVC being used to help fight the torque steer that high power front-wheel drive cars tend to have (like the Mazdaspeed 3), which makes the cars a handful. In this light, Moro-san’s comment about the car being “childish” makes a little more sense.

Mazda also mentioned it’ll install new seats in its cars that will hold drivers in more snugly to reduce the muscle exertion needed to hold themselves in during cornering. There wasn’t any specific info given on how this will be accomplished, but “Road and Track” noted that it sounded like the seats in the new MX-5, which utilize a springless hammock design. When driving the CorkSport MX-5, the seats do an excellent job; you don’t even think about sliding around in the seat going through the twisties.

Mazdaspeed | CorkSport

This last bit really goes out on a limb, so bear with me. Three months ago, someone in a Mazdaspeed 3 group mentioned that “his buddy, who works with Mazda” was in Japan and saw what could be a future Mazdaspeed 3 model being tested. He said it had an AWD system from the CX-3 and a turbo motor. Personally, I think the CX-3 AWD system would be ejected from the car with the first full boost take off from a standstill. So the system is probably the i-ACTIV AWD setup from a turbo-diesel CX-5, which is bigger and could withstand the abuse. I could see the new CX-9 engine being installed in the chassis, as it’s based on existing architecture and works with Mazda’s AWD offerings already in production from the diesel models sold in Europe. Adding AWD would get rid of the burnout qualities of the past Mazdaspeed 3, which could be interpreted as “childish” as well.

Mazdaspeed | CorkSport

Does this all mean we’re getting a turbo Mazda 3 next year with the facelift model? I don’t think so. We would’ve had a glimpse of it out of Hiroshima by now, instead of a rotary concept like the RX-VISION. Still, the performance we’ve all come to love from the Mazdaspeed name doesn’t seem like it’s going anywhere. It’s just growing up and going by a different handle these days.

-Derrick

Derrick Ambrose CorkSport Mazda Performance

2016
06.09

CorkSport

CorkSport is all about making direct drop-in aftermarket Mazda parts, as well as making sure the customer is 100% happy. We make sure to put all our energy, time, and reputation into making the best parts on the market. Because of that service, our customers give great feedback and let us know when there’s a problem or if the part is fantastic. We love this because our customers are our number one source for feedback on how a part fits, works, and looks. There’s a ton of competition in this industry; making something different is what sets CorkSport apart from all other companies.

When I first started working for CorkSport, my Speed 3 was built with an assortment of random parts because of the hype certain parts tend to receive. Word of mouth seems to have the most influence on people, especially with how social media works these days. I liked to call it “Frankenstein,” but my Mazda did perform, and I was able to reach my goals. As time went by, I started to slowly transition into having all CorkSport products. I liked the idea of having all the same parts that work together and allowed me to represent CorkSport when someone wanted to see under the hood. All our parts are designed to dress up an engine bay, undercarriage, or interior. This appeals to a lot of customers because they have options — and everyone loves options.

Front Mount Intercooler | CorkSport

I had no idea, but when I started to transition to CorkSport components, I realized that there were some small things that made a world of difference during install. For example, the CorkSport Front Mount Intercooler had one of the “little things” that made me say, “wow, I never realized how much of a difference this little part makes until now!” That little part ended up being the silicon hose that relocated the coolant hose out of the way of the cold pipe that goes into the throttle body. This was great! Not only did it allow more room to mess with the coupler for the throttle body, it also allowed me to install a meth nozzle into the cold pipe without anything getting in the way. Plus, the Front Mount Intercooler piping had mounting locations so I could secure the piping down (a problem I had on my previous setup). Most intercoolers have 6 mm or 8 mm runners. The CorkSport intercooler has 10 mm runners, which allow for more airflow without affecting efficiency. As I sat back and looked at all of these “little things,” I realized that they make a world of difference for install, as well as functionality.

MAP Sensor | CorkSport

Another item that blows out the competition is our MAP sensor. First, it’s a 3.5 bar MAP sensor that allows tuners to read boost up to 35 psi. Most people running MAP sensors use a 3 bar that will only read up to about 30 psi. Second, our MAP sensor is a direct plug-in. There’s no need to order a separate harness, which means less time waiting for parts and fewer components to worry about going bad. Some people may not see this as a big deal, but when you have a direct plug-in part that costs the same as other products, I would choose the direct plug-in every time. On top of all that, we made sure to laser etch the ATR adjustments you’d need to make in order to properly calibrate the new sensor. This means that as long as you’ve opened ATR once before, you’re able to make the adjustment yourself without help from a tuner!

Remember to think about ease of install and the small things when making a decision on which parts to buy. I assure you that you’ll be very happy when installing these parts!

Cheers,
Luke

Luke McCarvel-01

2016
06.03

Good day, my fellow Mazdaspeed enthusiast! Vincent here, back at it again with the white Vans (just kidding, I wear Nike). In today’s tech blog, I want to talk fuel pump internals. No, I am not here to debate whose internals are better or what brand offers what. I am here to help you track down and correct your low fuel pressure issue. Now, it’s no debate that anyone who’s anyone in the Mazdaspeed community will always recommend a high-pressure fuel pump internal upgrade before you start to go crazy down the mod list. But why do we want them and, more importantly, how do they work? I can confidently say that a majority of people who buy and install upgraded fuel pump internals do so simply because they are suggested it by their tuner, a forum, or a friend, but a very small percentage of people understand how they actually work, and how to correctly diagnose a problem should they ever have a fueling issue. So, grab a seat, and let’s dig in.

In order to get the best understanding of the fuel system equipped on these DISI engines, I find it best we start at the very beginning, and the very beginning is in the fuel tank in the rear of the car. Both the Mazdaspeed 3 and 6 are still equipped with your modern electric in-tank fuel pump. This fuel pump is a constant pressure fuel pump that can operate on two different voltages, high and low. What this means is the PCM can send low voltage to the pump for idle-like conditions when less fuel is required, and high voltage for high-flow conditions such as wide open throttle. But in both instances, we are not changing fuel pressure, just changing the amount of volume we are sending to the high-pressure fuel pump housing. It is important to note that. The fuel pressure generated by the intake fuel pump is in the 55–71 psi range.

HPFP Troubleshooting | CorkSport

As the fuel exits the tank, it travels through your standard-style hard and flexible fuel lines up to the entrance of the HPFP. Now, here is where the real fun happens. The low-pressure fuel first goes through a pulsation damper to help smooth it out and get rid of any tiny air bubbles that may exist and to help stabilize it before it moves on to the spill valve. The spill valve sits on top of the housing, and the best way to think of its operation is just like a tiny fuel injector. The amount of fuel we are feeding into the pump chamber is all controlled by the actuation of this valve. The valve is controlled by a spill control solenoid, which is the black plug on top you are all familiar with. The PCM energizes this solenoid, which lifts the spill valve off its seat and allows fuel to enter into the fuel pump chamber. When the PCM de-energizes the spill valve, the pintle is forced short with the assistance of a return spring.

At this point, the fuel is now isolated in the actual fuel pump chamber and is ready to be compressed and have its pressure raised to feed your fuel rail. As the engine rotates, the trilobe on the end of the intake camshaft drives the HPFP internals and compresses your fuel. Once the fuel is compressed, it now goes out the bottom by overcoming another spring and check ball. This spring is to make sure that fuel does not back feed into the fuel pump housing exit. This now pressurized fuel goes to your injectors and makes power. Any unused fuel returns back to the entrance of the HPFP via a pressure relief valve that sits on the fuel rail.

HPFP Troubleshooting | CorkSport

Get all that? If you did, then good. If you didn’t, then reread it a couple of times to absorb all the material. It’s good stuff to know. Now, let’s start down the diagnostic path of trying to determine why we are having low fuel pressure issues.

  • With KOEO, you should have 55–71 psi registering on your Accessport. This pressure should hold steady for a few minutes until the EVAP system slowly drops the pressure and everything leaks back down. If you don’t have any pressure reading at all, or a value much lower than that, expect a fuel delivery issue in the tank. This can be caused by any of the following:
    ◦  A bad in-tank fuel pump.
    ◦  A bad fuel pump relay.
    ◦  A clogged fuel pump filter.
    ◦  Faulty wiring and connections.
  • If you are having a lower than normal high-pressure fuel reading, such as always seeing 1,000 psi under all conditions even at WOT, you can expect either a mechanical or an electrical issue. The following are things to check:
    ◦  The condition of piston and sleeve. Look for any scuffing, scoring, or galling.
    ◦  The condition of the cam bucket. Look for any abnormal wear or damage.
    ◦  A sticking spill valve that is not allowing the correct amount of fuel into the chamber. (This is especially true on high-mileage cars and on cars where guys run lots of ethanol.)
    ◦  A stuck-open pressure relief valve.
    ◦  A broken seal screw O-ring or an improperly torqued seal screw.
  • If you are having an odd intermittent issue such as fuel pressure fluctuations that bounce around from 400 to 1,500, or something of the nature, then expect the following:
    ◦  A sticking spill valve that is not allowing the correct amount of fuel into the chamber. (This is especially true on high-mileage cars and on cars where guys run lots of ethanol.)
    ◦  A stuck-open pressure relief valve.
    ◦  A bad HPFP housing check valve exit.
    ◦  Damage to the HPFP internals themselves.
    ◦  A broken seal screw O-ring or an improperly torqued seal screw.

Checking some of these things is simple, such as the internals themselves and the seal screw. Confirming the physical condition of the internals will require the removal of them. We cannot tell if they are good or bad simply because of a low fuel pressure reading. The whole assembly works as a unit, and if any one of the above-mentioned things is bad, then the fuel system will not operate as intended. When removing the fuel pump internals, look for any signs of scoring, seizing, or scuffing. Any of these can actually be indications of an even bigger problem. It is rare for internals themselves to just go bad on their own, and in most cases, the units had a drop in lubrication that lead to excessive heat and premature failure.

HPFP Troubleshooting | CorkSport

Also check the condition of the seal screw. If the O-ring is bad, it will have a tear or pinch in it, and your oil can begin to develop a gas-type odor and can thin out. You will want to replace the O-ring and change the oil if this is the case. As for the other components, there is no easy way of testing them, and in most cases, if any part of the housing itself is bad, you are more than likely looking at replacing the pump as a unit.

HPFP Troubleshooting | CorkSport

I hope this gives you guys a little more clarity on the fuel delivery system and how it all works. Should you have any questions or comments, drop us a comment below.

Vincent

ABOUT_BLOG_General

2016
05.26

The 2016 ND Miata is a great driver’s car from the handling, steering feedback, and all of the little details Mazda put into the car. One thing I noticed in the car after driving it is that the shifter feels pretty good; notice I did not say great. As with any production car, you have to make a choice between quality and costs to deliver the best product you can.

MX-5 Short Shifter | CorkSport

Read More >>

2016
05.19

How does the CorkSport Big Brake Kit hold up to the track? Has the kit been tested at the limit? What do the brakes look like after a weekend of taking a beating?

CorkSport Big Brake Kit

Read More >>

2016
05.12

Dear Car Guy,

I recently had a birthday and was thinking about all of the awesome things I could spoil myself with. Then a thought occurred to me: We’ve never made it clear to your loved ones what to get you as gifts. I mean, wouldn’t it be nice to hand the wife a list or shoot her a quick link to let her know what’s awesome to get you?!

So here it is: THE LIST!

2006-2007 Mazdaspeed 6

CorkSport Mazdaspeed 6 Rear Motor Mount

CorkSport Rear Motor Mounts: Get rid of that nasty engine movement with our upgraded rear engine mount. This component is one of the weak points when trying to make big power. $115.99 plus shipping.

Read More >>

2016
05.06

After a long wait and a lot of testing, we’re proud to announce the launch of the CorkSport 4 Piston Big Brake Kit for the 2014+ Mazda 3 and Mazda 6, and the 2013+ Cx5.

Why upgrade your brakes to something of this level?

On our own 2015 Mazda 3 SCCA race car, we’ve found that even mildly increased power levels can burn up the stock brakes on the track. We melted the OEM dust boots off the stock calipers after two race weekends, which is not a good sign for longevity of OEM components.

corksport-mazda-3-big-brake-kit

CNC machined from extremely lightweight billet aluminum, the CorkSport calipers use an opposed piston design that is fixed to provide highly improved pad wear and caliper rigidity over the OEM design. At just over 7lbs, the aluminum CorkSport Big Brake Kit shaves almost 7lbs of unsprung weight off each corner of your Mazda 3, all while adding more stopping power and a much better pedal feel.

Available in 3 anodized colors, this brake system includes everything you need to easily upgrade your stock braking system including: high strength steel brackets, calipers, slotted brake rotors, stainless steel braided front brake lines, brake pads, and all necessary hardware.

mazda-3-big-brake-kit-calipers

The 2014+ Mazda 3 Big Brake Kit has the following features:

  • Superior Construction: Crafted from billet aluminum and made to last with durable components.
  • Longevity: With dual O-rings far away from the brake pads, these calipers are able to handle much more abuse than typical dust boot equipped calipers.
  • Lightweight: At just over 7lbs a side, this kit saves almost 7lbs of unsprung weight per corner!
  • Versatile: Designed around a popular brake pad style (Hawk #HB750), you can use almost any brake pad compound available on the market.
  • Available in Three Colors: Choose from black, red or blue in a durable anodized finish.
  • Ease of Use: With simple hand tools you can change brake pads in minutes and you are able to rebuild, so you can be back to factory fresh brakes in no time.
  • CorkSport Service and Support: Receive full color installation instructions, all of the needed installation hardware, and knowledgeable telephone support.

Mazda-3-Big-Brake-Kit-testing-700

The CorkSport 4 Piston Big Brake Kit is available at corksport.com for only $1,149.99 and is ready to ship now! For more information, visit our product listing here.