My car wishes it was a Cobra…

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Since cashmods asked, here is my toy car. 2002 Miata. 57000 mi. Totally mine, no lien holders. The 4th pic shows the difference between a style bar and a real roll bar… it actually bolts down to the bottom of the chassis. The other views are pretty self explanatory.

So far:
-Suspension has been modded somewhat (Bilsteins added, new sway bars).
– Door bars and “Frog Arms” have been added for stiffness.
– Stage 3 ceramic clutch and lightened flywheel.
– Better brakes, pads (Wildwood) and brake controller.
– New wheels (Koenig) and tires (Falken).
– Stainless steel brake lines.
– Mazdaspeed motor mounts.
– Double hoop roll bar (Boss Frog)
– A little rechargeable flashlight that goes in the lighter socket. ; )

To come (hopefully): Koni or Xida coilovers, Rotrex Supercharger, Megasquirt fuel injection system, FM Intercooler setup, 3″ back cat exhaust, 15×9 6UL wheels (949 Racing). Racing stripes?

Thats all assuming I don’t get REALLY ambitious and put a V8 in it…

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    35 Responses to My car wishes it was a Cobra…

    1. Yeah I know the difference, having had an 88 GT 5.0 V8, I was looking into a light bar for looks (BTW it was also convertible)

      Great job picking the body kit. I hate cars that look like they can shovel snow.

      A little high off the ground for my tastes.

      Also looks like it needs a nice double din with navi.

      A carbon fiber spoiler would make it look similar to an s2000. Or even a yellow one.

      Sure they are useless, but they look awesome.

      What’s the KBB on this thing?

      Gas mileage?


      • Believe it or not the body kit is factory, as is the ride height. The front lower lip is functional too, it has two ducts that blow into the air scoop for the front brakes. Brake fade is minimal, even coming down off Mt. Hood. I have not gotten to the point of altering the ride height until I track the car up at Portland International Raceway this summer. I may lower it a little if it needs it for the particular driving style I have, but the roads are so bad around my place that I already bottom out in a couple spots in the potholes. The coilovers I am looking at are quite adjustable so it should not be too hard to dial it in. I’m more about handling than the looks anyway.

        Not so keen on a spoiler, not really my thing and I wont need it for Solo II competition, speeds are just too low for it to have any effect. Maybe if I turn out to be at all competitive for Solo I a spoiler might be of use, but I’m skeptical about adding one purely for looks. Honestly what it needs at the moment more than anything is torque. It goes faster than I am willing to drive it, but acceleration is more or less sporty, but not all that impressive. Between the stiffening of the chassis, the stiffer motor mounts, heavier sway bar in the front, the Bilsteins and the lightened flywheel the car is responsive as hell though.

        As per a nav, I don’t need it and generally abhor the whole idea of them. I find my way around no problem anyway and when I cant I enjoy being lost. The stereo is factory, but is their “premium” package, (Bose in dash 6 disc with 4.1 speaker setup). I wish it had an auxiliary audio in or MP3 ability but frankly, it’s a noisy car, top down or not and “better” sound would be a waste.

        I don’t know about KBB, but after a collision last year that did a number on the bodywork on the front end the insurance declared a retail value in my market of $14,900 after I provided receipts for work done and $12,100 based solely on condition and make/model. I used to get about 25-30 mpg in the city when I first got it. Lately though between advancing the timing some and just learning to push the car more after realizing the car was just fine driving near redline for extended periods of time I get about 18-25 city in practice.


        • I can’t live without GPS.

          Can’t recall how many times I’ve needed it.

          Finally got one for work and used the fuck out of it.

          If you get a decent audio system (not even very expensive) the road sounds are inaudible.

          And srsly lower it or put adjustable air shocks.


          • Well, maybe I just live in a smaller city than you do but any time I have needed to know where I am going I looked it up before I left; any time I didn’t know where I was going I didn’t really want to know where the road goes before I got there.
            As per the audio, like I say, the stock audio is just fine. The Bose setup sounds good enough with the subwoofer. Only problem with it is that the bass is rich enough to start resonating the door panels and body kit.
            I may lower it once I get around to more work on the suspension, but only for performance reasons. Right now the limit on the cars cornering is the driver, not the suspension. I just really don’t want to be one of those twits who mods out the appearance of the car before doing anything significant to the performance. It’s kinda like those couch potatoes who wear high end athletic gear… Besides, I kinda like the idea of a sleeper.


            • 1. I doubt your city has a population of under 5,000.

              2. My dad had a 2003 BMW with harmon kardon, and they are very similar, so yes, it probably sounds good enough, if not better than something you can do yourself.

              3. Man, think about the gas mileage. If you just made it look super cool, you could drive around in an awesome looking car and be fuelly economic.

              I probably get more MPG in my 96 jimmy 4 door with the added subs and amps than you do right now.


    2. This is sooooooooooooooo cute! You guys should exchange numbers. You might become friends…. or something more!


    3. What do you do when it rains?


    4. gayer than a man fisting another man with a handful of aids


    5. I was about to say “Way to go casemods wanabe” but he beat me to the punch by even replying.


      • Hehe. Yea, I knew someone would say something along those lines. Don’t worry, I am not about to go posting pics of my computer, my guns, my couch, my yard, my desk lamp, my blender or my kitchen table any time soon. Really, who gives a shit? The only reason I posted this was that casemods specifically asked (in the post about the Cobra 427 hence the name of this post). I just figured that well, it IS a photo blog so, YTF not?


    6. Not my kind of car- but it’s tastefully done.


    7. Drive a Cobra sometime and you’ll be happy you have a Miata.

      Cobras are tiny inside, the pedals are so close together you step on the brake at the same time as you’re hitting the gas and your feet fry because there’s no insulation between the exhaust and the interior. You’ve got engine heat, trans heat and exhaust heat all wrapped around your cozy little feetsies. There’s no stereo, which is OK because you’re deaf after ten minutes anyway from the sidepipes. And the seats are torture.

      Face it, Cobras are awesome race cars, they suck as drivers.


      • Yea, thats about the same as everything else I have ever heard about them. I’ve just wanted one ever since I was a kid. If I did build/buy one it would probably be 70% for track use. I don’t mind uncomfortable cars though. I do hate cars where the suspension is mush, the interior is a spa, and everything about the car is controlled by some kind of mechanical widget. Then again, I have a 6 mile commute and don’t spend much time driving.


    8. Nice car. You have chosen…wisely. My FIL has a similar Miata and we love taking that thing out on the twisty roads.


      • Thx. It’s been a blast for the 4 years I have had it. My first car. I was looking at Z3’s and Honda S2K’s when I got it and this one just… jumped out at me. I bought it before I got my license… And yea, nothing quite like taking it out to the coast highway on a Tuesday morning and back with the top down. At normal driving speeds I don’t hardly even need to touch the brakes no matter how tight the turn. My wife hates it though… though I think thats about the other women that it tends to encourage to come over and chat.


    9. I’ve got a ’98 Mustang GT Convertible V8 4.6 turbocharged ‘Cobra’!/photo.php?fbid=848571284329&set=a.848571004889.2471718.14825713&theater .

      The reason that I put ‘Cobra’ in quotes is because the previous owner had done everything to convert it from a GT to a Cobra (body, engine, side pipes, etc.) but the serial numbers don’t match.

      Anyway, I love this car. I really do. It’s insane fun to drive. It goes from zero to illegal in nothing flat.


      • Right on, sounds like a fun ride. How is the cornering on it? Around here the traffic is such that you don’t have the space to get up to speed but there are LOTS of twisty mountain / hilly roads around. Any problems with the engine? I ask because one of the pipe dreams with mine (or another MX-5) is to do a V8 swap and one of the kits out there is for a Ford V8. It is just kinda sad how the Miata doesn’t have much torque when the frame is designed to have a stronger engine but they decided not to for marketing reasons.


        • Okay, there is one problem with my ‘Cobra’ and this is 450 HP to the rear wheels and if it catches a piece of ice you can (and I have) done a 360 in about 2 seconds.

          My wife and I are going to drive it to New Orleans for our anniversary in May. About 2,500 miles round trip down and back up the Mississippi.


          • Why are you driving a sports car in ice? Sounds like you are racing it in ice?

            If it’s cold enough, don’t drive that fast.

            That’s a summer car, and you should invest in a 4 wheel drive for winter weather, or at least get snow tires for winter.

            Also, yeah, the first thing I thought when I looked at that mustang was “hey, that’s just got the hood scoops and front body kit added to a standard mustang”

            Get the rims and the awesome saleen or roushe spoiler/kit and it would look tons better. lowering with some better wheels would probably be good enough too.


            • Actually, it’s everything except the matching serial numbers: side pipes, back and sides, spoiler, turbocharger. Also 17″ rims, calipers, etc. Even says ‘COBRA’ on the back.

              Not really racing on ice; just caught a patch. Didn’t feel like taking the wife’s car to the store.


    10. @lrichardson

      I have two words for you: Monster Miata.

      Google that and you may find that you may be able to fulfill cars wishes.


      • Yea, MM is the maker of the Ford V8 kit I mentioned above. Flyin Miata also makes a V8 kit for the Chevy LSX. It’s an appealing notion, I just don’t want to put a huge amount of time and effort into something that becomes undrivable in the end… I’m hoping to do the supercharger route first and see how the car handles before looking at something scarier.


        • Your route makes sense, though from all accounts, Miatas with the V8 swap are not at all unstreetable unless you get ridiculous with the motor…


          • What I would REALLY love is a bolt in kit to do a V6 swap into the MX-5. I’m not looking for high maximum torque, what I want is a nice wide but more or less flat torque curve (at least compared to the sewing machine it has in it now).

            I’d also love to see someone do an electric roadster conversion of an MX-5 but… I’ll wait till I’m done paying off the student loans for that one. Anyhow, I’m off to the track today.


    11. I rarely drop comments, however after looking at
      a few of the responses on My car wishes it was a
      Cobra? | My[confined]Space. I do have 2 questions for you if it’s allright. Is it just me or do a few of the responses appear like they are left by brain dead folks? 😛 And, if you are writing at other online social sites, I would like to keep up with anything new you have to post. Could you post a list of the complete urls of your social sites like your linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?

      my web blog; local used cars


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