Wednesday, August 19, 2015

GM 4.3 V6 Powaaaaa: 1990 Mazda MX-5 Miata

Swapping a boat anchor GM V6 with auto slushbox combo into Mazda's MX-5 will make you about as popular as Paula Deen in black face at a #BlackLivesMatter rally, but that is exactly what the builder of this next feature did.  Not the Paula Deen MX-V6!  And you know what....I like it.  Find this 1990 Mazda MX-5 Miata here on eBay bidding for $1,899 reserve-not-met with 3 days to go, located in Marietta, GA.

The MX-5 is a lightweight corner carver with room for two, so it is the perfect car in which to shove a torquey engine with an automatic gearbox, and let all the naysayers have at it.  Cause this is your car. This is America, land of freedom and stuff.  You want to bark the tires going into second gear, but still be slower to 60 mph than the original drivetrain...this is it? Understeer -- hell yeah!!

The 4.3 liter...wait...where are we?  Some communiss country?  No.  The 262 cubic inch V6 put out 140 (Society of American Engineering net) horsepower and 225 ft-lbs of torque when new, could be more, could be less, but it sure as heck can run on 87 octane gas mixed 50:50 with Kentucky homebrew moonshine.  50:50 weight distribution? Sure...left:right.

Just look at that monstrous B&M shifter sticking up from the center console like a chrome Rhinoceros horn just ready to unleash 4 forward gears of hydraulically controlled mayhem in the oddly sourced Nissan R200 rear diff.  Gram strategy?  Yeah, do a gram here, a ounce there, and then built this bad boy in the shed out back while yer awake for the next 36 hours straight. 

See a better car to park front and center at the next Japanese classic car meetup?


  1. This is a case where more really is less.
    The more they modified the Miata the less it became.

    He is probably selling it because there was no time or resources to finish the El Camino conversion.

  2. I'm guessing he just wanted to tow a horse trailer. So he needed a little extra...something.

  3. This has me wondering....has anyone ever put the old MX-3 1.8L V6 into a Miata? Hey, it doesn't make any less sense than this.

    1. There is someone converting a Ford 3.7 V6 here at this

      I think that Miata will be a winner.

  4. Oh Lord, why?

    That hood is like a gigantic padded codpiece. No, no, no.

    And the whole 4.3 thing...why didn't he just stick in a Yanmar or Cummins marine diesel, for God's sake?

    But then, if it were a good and carefully thought-out swap with simpatico parts it would have sold before we had a chance to grumble about it, right?


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