FIRST WORDS

Total MX-5 - - FIRST WORDS -

Iwas maybe half an hour away from hav­ing a drive of the BBR tur­bos you see on the cover of this is­sue of

To­tal MX-5. But then a phone call told of a fam­ily emer­gency that des­per­ately re­quired my pres­ence at home.what I should do was a no­brainer, of course – get in my car and screech back – and yet there was a brief mo­ment of in­ter­nal, self­ish strug­gle when I won­dered if things were as bad as de­scribed…

Thing is, I re­ally, re­ally wanted a go in those BBR cars, be­cause I re­mem­ber fondly the MX-5 BBR Turbo from when it first came out back in 1990, and it was su­perb. The new Her­itage Col­lec­tion kits with their mod­ern map­ping and an­other 28 years of tur­bocharg­ing de­vel­op­ment, prom­ise to be even bet­ter, and that was a tempt­ing prospect. By com­plete fluke, a friend of To­tal MX-5, Dan Trent, was drop­ping off his mk1 at BBR HQ at the very mo­ment I was tak­ing the phone from my ear – he im­me­di­ately stepped into the breech, spar­ing me any fur­ther soul-search­ing, and bring­ing you some ex­cel­lent first im­pres­sions of the Her­itage Col­lec­tion. You can read them on p34.

As Dan points out in his story, one of the in­ter­est­ing fac­tors for mo­ti­vat­ing BBR to get back into the early MX-5 tur­bocharg­ing game is the ris­ing val­ues of mk1s and clean ex­am­ples of the mk2. Re­de­vel­op­ing and engi­neer­ing the turbo kits to sat­isfy a far more so­phis­ti­cated mod­ern au­di­ence has not been cheap, and cus­tomers are un­likely to spend in ex­cess of £5k with BBR if their car is worth a fifth of that.with high qual­ity mk1s now of­ten sail­ing past the £7k mark, own­ers are more will­ing to sink a lit­tle cap­i­tal into their cars in the ex­pec­ta­tion of get­ting a rea­son­able chunk of it back again one day. And hav­ing the name of the orig­i­nal ex­po­nent of tur­bocharged MX-5S stuck to the cam cover should fur­ther give them the con­fi­dence to in­vest in mak­ing their car go – much – quicker.

Do you wave at other MX-5S? I don’t mean on the way to club meets or track­days, just gen­er­ally, out on the road, when you’re nip­ping down to Tesco and such. I’ve found it to be a bit hit and miss in terms of re­sponse from MX-5 driv­ers, much more so than when I’m in my VW bay win­dow camper and ev­ery other Dub­ber gives a friendly hand ges­ture. Guess you have to blame the car’s pop­u­lar­ity and, un­til re­cently, cheap­ness, mean­ing that plenty of non-en­thu­si­asts own them merely as in­ter­est­ing trans­port. I’m not giv­ing up, so if you see me wav­ing, please wave back…

Brett Fraser, ed­i­tor brett@bret­tfraser.co.uk

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