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

Meet Derrick from CorkSport. Loves racing, Mazdas, and his CS fam.

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.

 

2016
04.28

Tired of looking at all of the Genjuan guys showing off their upgraded steering wheels? Not anymore! We just finished the development and release of the 2010-2013 Performance Steering Wheel. For those of you with a 2010-2013 Mazda 3 or Mazda 5, yes the wheel will work great in your models as well.

This is a complete steering wheel with no stitching required, unlike some of the other kits on the market. The CorkSport Performance Steering Wheel is designed to be a direct OEM replacement. It works flawlessly with the OEM steering column, covers, button panels, and airbag for a stress-free 30-minute installation.

The image below shows exactly what you will receive in the package.

Upgrade your gen 2 Mazdasspeed 3 and Mazda 3 interior with the CorkSport Performance Steering Wheel.

This is a fully assembled steering wheel with all the OEM components, including your original buttons.

Steering wheel upgrade for the 2010-2013 Mazdaspeed 3 and Mazda 3.

Think about this: What part of your Mazda do you have contact with every single time you’re in the car? Your steering wheel! Why not give your hands some much-needed love with hand wrapped and stitched leather. The wheel has a slight texture and a plush feel to it. We even used perforated leather in the high use areas so your hands won’t get clammy on spirited drives.

Upgrade your steering wheel with the CorkSport Performance Steering Wheel for he Gen 2 Mazdaspeed 3 and Mazda 3.

The wheel diameter is the same as OEM but the thickness of the wheel has been increased, which is much more comfortable for long drives or just a quick jaunt to the store. The flat bottom gives it a more aggressive feel and actually makes it easier to get in and out of the car, especially for those of you with longer legs.

All that said, probably the most exciting feature of the CorkSport Performance Steering Wheel is the aggressive thumb grooves. These help you lock your hands in place, giving you more confidence on twisty roads and helps you fight the torque steer from your boost motor.

Cheers,

CorkSport

2016
04.14

Get your new MX-5 ready for the road with these key performance parts.

Here at CorkSport, we don’t stop until it’s perfect. Multiple designs and rigorous testing ensure the highest quality product for your Miata. We even spent the day at Portland International Raceway pushing the swaybars and springs to their limits!

Give your MX-5 the power it deserves with a few key performance parts:

Cold Air Intake System

Designed to help your Miata breathe easy and increases air flow. Our cold air intake system includes a CAD designed ABS box and lid, billet aluminum MAF housing, and an AEM high-flow dry air filter to keep your intake temp nice and cool.

Lowering Spring Set

An aggressive look without sacrificing functionality or ride quality. Our springs provide a drop of 1.6” in the front and 1.1” in the rear and a spring rate increase of 13% in front and 58% in rear.

Front Swaybar

Get your body roll under control with 3-way adjustability.  

Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 10.16.23 AM

Front Swaybar End Links

Take your swaybar control to the next level. Our end links allow you to fine tune your left and right swaybar balance and they only weigh 1.4 oz more than the OEM units.

Rear Swaybar

Get your body roll under control with 3-way adjustability.

Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 10.06.37 AM

Axle Back Exhaust

Top performance without the annoying drone. Manufactured from T304 stainless steel, CNC mandrel bent and TIG welded for a perfect fit and long lasting durability.

Only the best for your new Miata!

Cheers,

CorkSport

2016
04.04

18TH-birthday

Today is officially the 18th anniversary of CorkSport! That means 18 years of eating, sleeping, breathing Mazda — and we couldn’t be happier.

Check out some of our employees’ favorite memories, seasons, and reasons for working at CorkSport.

Derrick Ambrose

I have plenty of great days at CorkSport. Several of the great moments are getting the first race win in the CorkSport Mazda 2 B-Spec car at Autoclub Speedway, the many customer events we’ve had at CorkSport in the past, and the opportunity to drive so many great cars. The best moments have been every time we’ve moved locations. It’s always been into better and better facilities, which gives us the opportunity to grow into it, make our company better, and know the future is ahead with limitless possibilities.

Dustin Berentsen

My favorite memory so far of my time at CS was in late 2011 when a bunch of us went to SEMA in Las Vegas. I had been with CS for almost a year at that point and, while I had hung out with almost everyone outside of work individually, it was the first real time that we had gone and done something big as a group. It was also my first time going to SEMA, which was a cool experience. The highlight was the opportunity for team building and getting to know everyone in a neutral environment where everyone was just having fun. That was great.

Kelly Harris

After a decade with CS, here’s my top 10 reflections/moments/cars/people:

10. Korean BBQ in Toyako with Derrick and Rich.
9. OCC.
8. All 8 of my Mazda’s.
7. Mad bathroom dash through Mazda US’s shop. The cars I saw, oh cars!
6. The Mazda community and the dear friends I’ve connected with.
5. CS parties, always fun.
4. Did I mention the cars?
3. The evolution of CorkSport as a business.
2. All present and past staff.
1. My husband.

Brandon Johnson

The NATOR BBQ. We got to see all the local community. I met new people that have become friends. These are people we talk to on a regular basis now!

Luke McCarvel

My favorite day working at CS has to be the company track day. I’ve never had an opportunity to attend a race day like that before. I learned a lot of things that day, which help my decisions in building my car now and down the line. One thing I’d like to note is how well a track day reveals the weaknesses of your car. I’ve always been into the 1320, so it was a huge eye-opener on how important something like brakes are. Looking forward to any future race days!!

Vincent Melon

My favorite season for working at CorkSport is always the summer. I’m as cold blooded as it gets and I really enjoy when the sun comes out so I can soak in all the warmth. Some of my favorite parts of working at CorkSport are staying late after work to build engines or work on some racecars with my co-workers and fellow enthusiasts. I love going out to all the events, shows, track days, and just meeting other Mazda fanatics. Making new friends and memories are the best parts. Oh, also did I mention summer is prime race season? 🙂

Kim Russell

I’ve enjoyed working at CorkSport and the hilarity that happens on a day-to-day basis. Not many know, but we’re a small company, more like a family, and that allows for some amazing conversations, work parties, get-togethers, lunches, and meetings overall. We definitely have our serious moments, but it’s the ones that bring us together that are my favorite. Especially the things we learn about one another through Cards Against Humanity battles, Nerf gun wars (surprisingly, I won our first one), and mandatory fun throughout the years.

Barett Strecker

There are many memories I could talk about, but probably the most hysterical was from the first company BBQ I attended a couple months after I started. The BBQ was at an employee’s home a bit out in the country. They have lots of acreage and a couple ATV’s. Being the country boy I am at heart, I hopped on the ATV to go exploring for JUST a few minutes. Two hours later, they finally found me and had to pull me out of a mud hole I was stuck in. I was covered head-to-toe in mud and had missed most of the BBQ, but it’s a CS memory that will never be forgotten.

Here’s to another 18 years of aftermarket Mazda parts!

Cheers,

CorkSport