Adam's Slammed NB MX5
Photography by Joseph Hui (AKA J_HUI).
Justin: I remember your diary from a few years back, if I'm right the car was an automatic? It seemed like you came under fire for that. What was the go there?
Adam: Haha yeah, a bloody auto! It was my mums old car. One day she was in Perth on a holiday and the hire car company didn't have the car that she originally had hired ready for her, so they upgraded her to an MX-5.
As soon as she got back to Sydney she was on the hunt for one.
Unfortunately she didn't (and still doesn't) know how to drive a manual, nor did I when I was first learning to drive. Long story short, my mum fell pregnant and wanted to make way for a more practical car, that's where I jumped in and took the car off her.
Justin: Mum's old car?! Definitely unexpected, also explains why it's an auto. I suppose you just fell into modifying it or did you always have plans to convert it to manual?
Adam: I actually learned to drive on the MX-5. It's funny, when I first started modifying it I'd always get that head shake, like I'm mad or something.
Justin: That makes a lot more sense. I find it both interesting and frustrating that a lot of people feel the need to pressure automatic drivers into driving manual, which is highly overrated now that I drive DSG hahaha.
Justin: So how did you cope with that patronising pressure? The flaming and the cheap shots.
Adam: Honestly I always wanted to learn manual from the start but there was no manual cars in my joint, or even at my dad's joint. In the end I just couldn't pass up my Mum's MX-5, even that it was an auto.
At first the flaming on the net got to me, but then I thought it's only the internet, you build your own car to what you like, you do what you want to do with it and that there's no point trying to impress strangers behind a computer screen.
Despite initially saying that I would do it asap. I took my time with the manual conversion as it just kept getting pushed aside for cheap parts that would pop up (that I had trouble refusing LOL).
Justin: At that time, did you also know all about the Road&ster culture behind the MX-5? If not, how did you stumble upon it?
Adam: At first I didn't. I was still in high school when I was on my L's and P's, and everyone was into show cars, hot4's and the like. I thought this it was cool too and I started going down that path.
Thankfully, after many hours searching the internet I discovered ClubRoadster.net. I remember browsing the picture threads and seeing all these slammed Miata's with fat wheels and a shitload of camber. I knew from that day, I would try pull something similar off to what the guys in the US were doing with these things. It just took a long time to get everything together as I was an apprentice bricklayer at the time.
Justin: It seems like a lot of the younger generation on JDMST are first influenced by USDM culture, then later influenced by JDM culture.
Adam: I guess you can say the guys in the US opened the doors for me to see what everyone in Japan was doing with their cars, let's face it, it's not easy to find Japanese websites let alone understand any of it!
In the end I started to get to the point where I just did what I want with the car. I didn't want to follow any trends or fads and parts came from all over the place: Japan, America, Europe you name it!
Justin: On the topic of your car then. Not too long ago I saw it up close and in broad daylight at The Low-Down meet. It was rough around the edges, in a nice ghetto drifter kinda style. It was also fucking low and had a cage to boot. First thing I thought to myself was fuck, if guys are driving around in cars like this then why the hell do I have to worry about getting defected driving my GT-R?!
Adam: Haha. Yeah the car got to the point where I didn't want to take it out because I had a fear of getting pulled over, defected or EPA'd. I was driving to work and the HWP got me 2km's from my house. Mind you I only work about 8kms away from where I live, but that's life.
Justin: So do you think you went too far with the mods?
Adam: To me it's now more of a track car than a street car. It's raw as fuck! Has no A/C, no P/S, a locked diff, loud exhaust, fixed buckets and cage. It's a pain in the ass to drive on the street but such a pleasure on the track. So, for street? Yes, way too far.
Justin: So what's with selling the MX-5 for a Stagea all about then?
Adam: With how the MX-5 drives on the street, and the attention from the authorities, the buzz wore off quickly. I love it, but I'm sick of it too. Lack of space combined with a recent work injury that has affected my lower back. I was also getting to the point with the MX-5 where I wanted more power.
Funny thing is I'm starting all over again with the Stagea as the one I'm looking at is an automatic! It's an oddball car. Many people thing its a Volvo which might keep it under the radar a little, it has heaps of space! It's still packing a decent engine too, the good ol' RB25 can make decent power quite easily.
I can see myself driving the Stagea, well anywhere really. I won't want to kill myself on long drives from the drone of the exhaust. I won't feel all cramped up. It'll be nice to drive a "normal" car for a change.
Justin: So what will happen to your web site RoadsterGarage which you have built up to be more than a site on your car, and other roadsters, but also parts I see?
Adam: I'm thinking about merging it into a new blog, so it'll still be about my modifying life.
Justin: Well it's been nice chatting Adam. All the best with parting out the MX-5 and I'm looking forward to your Stagea build.
Honestly when I joined here a year ago, I never even dreamed about photoshooting one of Sydney's... or even Australia's meanest looking, street driven Mx5's for a feature. What an honor, Thanks for the opportunity Justin and Adam
It will defiantly be sad to see the Mx5 parted out, after seeing it out in many twilight drift's, Eomm's and chatting to Adam about it on a daily basis.
But all good things come to an end, but another chapter already began, I can't wait to see how the C34 Stagea turns out mate :')