Sunday, March 22, 2015

10k: V8 Swap: 1992 Mazda MX-5 Miata

The first generation (NA) Mazda MX-5 Miata attacked the worlds apexes starting in 1989 and continuing well past 1997 when the last one rolled off the assembly line.  Although Mazda never offered a turbocharged edition in the first generation, plenty of speed freaks boosted the little 1.6/1.8 liter 4-banger, but to get real performance the preferred method is to build a Monster Miata with a V8 engine swap.  Find this 1992 Mazda MX-5 Miata with Ford 5.0 V8 power offered for $13,500 near Cleveland, OH.


The MX-5 is a  fun car to drive, even before you double (or triple) the original horsepower.  The lightweight Lotus Elan inspired 2-seater features some of the best tuned rack-and-pinion steering in the business and independent double-wishbone suspension on all four wheels.  When new it could hit 60mph in about 8 seconds and reach a top speed of 126 mph, not exactly "killing it" in the modern world. 


An owner of this car decided that ringing the maximum out of the little 1.8 liter 4-banger wasn't doing it, so he (she?) shoved a Ford V8 into the front.  This Monster Miata now sports a 5.0 liter pushrod V8 with a number of performance enhancers mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox.  Expect power in the 300hp range if everything is done correctly.


 See a cooler V8 powered sleeper? tips@dailyturismo.com

7 comments:

  1. Neato Bandito!

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  2. Way sleeper. It has to be so fun to drive.

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  3. There is quite the market for putting LSX engins in the MX-5, so I always perk up when a ford powered one happens along. I'm not much of a hoonigan anymore and as such am always looking at freeway cruising and maybe top-end speed so these things are still way high on the list. I can't wait till folks start putting ford 3.5L 365 hp, or chevy 3.6 Twin Turbo v-6 420hp. Either one with a close ratio 8 speed auto transmission would be great fun and shave at least a couple hundred pounds off the equation... Bloods rushing... need. to. read. something. more sedate.... 1979 Toyota Corolla, ahhhhh that did it..

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  4. All it needs are some Tiger badges on the fenders.

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  5. I can imagine the amount of frame twist when you light the candle on that 5-oh. The neat thing about the '90-93 is that most of the chassis stiffening from the '94+ NA cars bolt up. They didn't list any chassis upgrades outside of the front roll bar in the ad (the rear most likely due to the change needed to a Thunderbird 8.8" independent rear setup), but that would definitely be a good idea.

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  6. I just finished my monster miata (Ford 302) install. I think it's absolutely fabulous. She is completely bone stock (minus the driveline). I've been driving it for 2 months. The car has great manners.

    The price difference of the ford vs the LS is amazing. Closer to 15K all said and done.
    (I have a 97 with a 1.8 supercharger MP62) and a 95 R-package with the Ford 302 (no A/C or power steering).

    It's great to see I haven't wasted ALL my money. ha!
    If you are considering it... you should really consider it. :)

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    Replies
    1. That's super cool, Chris! Pictures, pictures, please!

      Delete

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