Mazda MX-5 boosted by BBR turbo conversion

A twin-scroll turbocharger helps increase the four-cylinder sports car's output by 90bhp

Northamptonshire-based MX-5 tuner, BBR, has turbocharged the latest generation of Mazda’s small sports car taking its power to 248bhp. This new conversion is for the 2-litre model and cuts the car’s 0-62mph time from 7.3sec down to just 5sec. The package costs £4995 or, should you wish to fit it yourself, £4395.

> Read our review of the Mazda MX-5

Subscribe to evo magazine

Subscribe today to our exclusive new offer and SAVE 39% on the shop price, get evo for its original cover price of £3.00 an issue, plus get a FREE gift worth £20!

Of course, BBR doesn’t bolt any old turbocharger to the MX-5 just to gain a chunk of extra power; the conversion is much more in-depth than that.

To begin with, the turbocharger itself is a twin-scroll unit, chosen over a supercharger and single-scroll unit because its low back pressure is suited to the MX-5’s high compression ratio Skyactiv engine. The turbocharger then mounts onto BBR’s specifically designed cast-iron exhaust manifold.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

A new ignition and fuel map to suit the more powerful engine is then controlled by BBR’s Starchip/ECuTeK RaceRom software, with the turbo’s boost set to 7psi. To further improve the turbocharger’s efficiency, BBR has added an air-to-air intercooler to reduce the charge air temperatures.

> Find out what the Porsche 718 Boxster S is like once tuned by TechArt

To make space for the new hardware the battery is repositioned within the engine bay; the tray that it sits on it has been finished in the same colour as the new boost pipes and hoses.

The turbo’d MX-5 produces its 248bhp at an impressively high 7150rpm – 1150rpm higher than the standard car delivers its 158bhp. The BBR car has 89lb ft more torque than the basic naturally-aspirated car at 235lb ft, which comes in at 3250rpm – a whole 1350rpm lower in the rev range.

BBR refers to this new conversion as Stage 1, and says there will be more to come in the future. ‘With internal upgrades to the Mazda engine we know that considerable extra power is available – the BBR technical team is already developing future stages to exploit this', explains BBR's Neil McKay.

> Mazda MX-5 BBR Super 200 review – Better than the standard car?

Advertisement - Article continues below

BBR has been tuning MX-5s for many years and has modified every version since the first generation NA. The firm was even trusted by Mazda itself, as it was called upon to boost the engine in the official MX-5 Le Mans edition from 1991.

This is the first time BBR has turbocharged the ND MX-5, having previously focused on extracting more power while keeping the motor naturally aspirated. BBR achieves an additional 45bhp from the atmospheric engine by changing the intake system, the cams and valve springs, replacing the exhausts with a stainless steel manifold and remapping the ECU.

Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/mazda/mx-5/202091/mazda-mx-5-refreshed-for-2020
Mazda MX-5

Mazda MX-5 refreshed for 2020

8 Jan 2020
Visit/mazda/mx-5/202077/bbr-super-220-review-modded-mazda-mx-5-hits-with-a-light-touch
Mazda MX-5

BBR Super 220 review

2 Jan 2020
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/saloons/202421/supersaloon-face-off-old-vs-new
Saloons

BMW M5 F90 vs E28 M5, RS6, E500 and Lotus Carlton: supersaloons old vs new

From the first to the very latest, we take a dive into the history of the supersaloon with the 1985 BMW M5 E28 and other classics taking on today's mo…
4 Apr 2020
Visit/honda/nsx/202424/honda-nsx-review-enough-to-take-on-its-european-rivals
Honda NSX

Honda NSX review - enough to take on its European rivals?

Honda’s supercar is immensely capable and startlingly fast, but it’s easier to respect than it is to love
6 Apr 2020
Visit/lamborghini/huracan/202426/lamborghini-huracan-performante-gains-twin-turbochargers
Lamborghini Huracan

Lamborghini Huracán Performante gains twin turbochargers

US-based AMS Performance has fitted a pair of snails to the Lamborghini Huracán Performante
6 Apr 2020
Visit/hyundai/201819/hyundai-i30-fastback-n-versus-the-nurburgring
Hyundai i30 N

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Nurburgring

We brought the Hyundai i30 Fastback back to its spiritual home in Germany's Eifel mountains, where there is a racing track you might well have heard o…
7 Oct 2019