Mazda has been on a renaissance as of late, with the redesigned 3, 6 and CX-5 earning numerous accolades from across the industry. The next-generation MX-5 Miata is already in development, making the Mazda 2 the next candidate for a redesign.
The Mazda Hazumi concept, unveiled at the 2014 Geneva auto show earlier this week, previews the next-generation (and likely more subdued) 2015 Mazda 2.
I’ve been contemplating replacing the seats in my M3 with something lighter weight and a bit more sporty for a while and recently came across a driver’s side Recaro seat from a Mitsubishi Evolution X on Craigslist for dirt cheap. I’m fairly sure these are actually Recaro SR-11′s with SRS airbags. One of the reasons I got my seat so cheap — $300 — is because the airbag in the seat was blown. Luckily removing the airbag and stitching up the material looks straight forward.
Besides being really highly bolstered, a plus of the Evolution X Recaro seat is that they already have Recaro sliders built in. Unfortunately the mounting holes on the slider that would typically be used to attach E46 floor mounts are covered by tabs which have been welded on to fit the floor of the Evo X. Installing my Macht Schnell E46 floor mount should be as easy as taking a Dremel to the tabs to expose the original mounting holes in the slider. We’ll see if it’s that easy.
The only downside of this seat is that it does not easily tilt like the CS or SRD via a handle. The seat back angle must be manually adjusted using a turn dial and because of that would be much better suited for a sedan. BUT, I did find this photo of an SR-11 and if you look closely you’ll see a tilt handle. Perhaps the tilt mechanism can be retrofitted to the Evo X Recaro or if I really like the seat I may find a set of SR-11′s.
I visited a friend at his shop in VA one February evening. Several technicians there own Mitsubishi Evolutions and there was a spoiler from an Evo 8 laying on the ground in the corner near the lift where my car was parked. It was out of pure curiosity that I grabbed some shop towels and laid them down on the corners of the trunk of my M3. The Evolution spoiler, placed gingerly atop.
Step back. Cringe. Chuckle. In that order. Continue reading
If you’re an enthusiast on the west coast and you haven’t heard of Shift-S3ctor, you should. These guys host incredible track days, bringing, as they call it, the “Triple Threat” of automotive events. This of course being road courses, drag/side by side roll runs and drifting.
February 22nd was their 1/3 Mile Roll Race / Trap Speed Competition at Willow Springs International Raceway in Rosamond, CA. According to their website, this is more of an “appetizer” to their Airstrip Attack events. Cars accelerate down a 1/3 mile strip of the Big Willow Raceway and trap speeds are recorded at the end. As you can imagine, being California and all, some beautiful high end cars were in attendance.
It’s a good think photographer BJ Lopez was in attendance. BJ’s work is some of the best track day photography I’ve seen in a while. Continue reading
There is a misconception that owning a sports car or having a souped up ride is a prerequisite to attending a high performance driving event (HPDE). If you have never been to a track day before you might be surprised to see such a large mix of vehicles. The most popular cars at the track are those you see everyday on the streets such as the BMW 3-Series, Nissan Sentra and Subaru WRX. It doesn’t matter if you drive a Corvette or Camry, your first HPDE or track day can be a blast.
The key to having a successful and fun track day is not having to worry about your car. Below are the primary parts of your car that you’ll want to check. Continue reading
Yesterday I had a chance to check out the latest generation of the Audi S4. It’s the B8 chassis, (2009+) and its supposed to be the best S4 to date. My view of the entire 4 series, not just the S4, has always been that they’re nose heavy, under-steering machines. The S4 line just happened to be slightly sportier with much more power. I’ve always seen the S4 as a car better suited to daily driving than spending time on any track surface.
The silver 2010 Audi S4 I looked at appeared to be very well appointed and spec’d out pretty much how I’d want it. Visible options included the sport differential, navigation, Bang&Olufsen stereo, charcoal/alcantara Recaro seats and 19″ wheels. This was also a 6-speed manual. This car has just under 42k miles and is stickered at $37k. The original window sticker price when new was probably just shy of $60k.
So what is it like compared to my E46 M3? I’ll tell you. Now. Continue reading
As you all know, I’ve owned quite a few cars over the years. Twenty , to be exact, since I received my license fifteen  years ago. Lots of research went in to the decision of each. A select few purchases were more notable than others. Majority of the cars were purchased to satisfy my desire to track and time attack my car. Some were owned just a few months before deciding it wasn’t going to do what I want. Others only took a few days to come to that realization. I have only renewed my vehicle registration on two. Continue reading
Welcome back to the RFD coverage of the 2014 Washington Auto Show. Earlier this week we brought you coverage of the upper level, including GM, FCA, Toyota and Ford. Thankfully the Italians and Japanese did not lure us up there to be flanked by the Germans, but our trip isn’t over yet. Today we venture downstairs to the “Import plus Cadillac” section of the show to see what’s cooking with BMW, Lexus, Jaguar, Audi, Subaru and a host of others.
As you saw earlier this week, RFD is fresh off of the 2014 Washington Auto Show. Part II is coming tomorrow featuring Lexus, BMW, Audi, Cadillac, Mercedes, Jaguar and many others. We wanted to do a quick preview by sharing a mini-gallery of one of our favorite cars, the Jaguar F-Type R coupe.
Hi, my name is William and I am a car enthusiast. No really, I can prove it. And since I’m about to tell you why I don’t like watching racing, something most enthusiasts consider blasphemy, I figure I damn well better provide some proof.