This weeks FaceBook Group “Pic4Swag” winner is Andrew Nuse’s 2006 Mazda3 that really shows the passion in a D.I.Y. build. Congratulations Andrew and we can’t wait to see what 2012 brings to this beautiful Mazda!
My car was purchased in early summer of 2009, with not many intentions of having any serious modding done to it. I have always enjoyed the tuner scene, and I literally grew up around a race track. To rewind for a bit, my father was a co-owner and VP of Road Atlanta through the 90s, before that, he used to race just about everything. At one time our garage was filled with an old Ducati GP bike, three lotus race cars (dating all the way back to the 50s), a Ferrari Daytona (two actually, but one was a race car, the other a full street car), two sprint cars from the the 60s, and .. THE .. McLaren M30 (previously driven by Alain Prost), but that never saw our basement garage, I don’t think.
Forward in time, my car is.. my roots. Sort of. My father quit racing once my oldest sister was born back in the 80s. But growing up on Road Atlanta, being there almost every weekend it felt like, it was.. well it was literally where I grew up.
My car has been through a few odd phases. Exterior parts came first, and wheels and coilovers pretty much came last. It’s been a project, at an equal rate of my paychecks just about. Everything done to my car has been done with my own hands just about, only thing I didn’t get a hand in was installing the header, I was actually being pushed away from trying to help lol. There were absolutely no real directions in the beginning, and I still wasn’t very clear where I was going with this car until I found my wheels.
My wheels changed everything. I bought them from a drifter out in California, who didn’t really know what they were, and they were torn to bits. Curb rash around the entire lips of all 4 wheels, the paint on the centers was all chipping and was all the wrong color, wrong markings, everything. Once I started to work on them I attempted to research all that I could on them. That research brought me to the roots of where my car is today, and what Mazda is also. After contacting every Rays Engineering stores and even their headquarters, I finally came across what they were on a random website when trying to learn how to repair wheels, the website had the exact same wheels. Loandbehold, they are Rays Engineering GTPs from the 90s. They are the “non-mazdaspeed” version of the wheels, which, for those wondering, the Mazdaspeed version of the wheels are on the Mazda 787B. After spending weekend after weekend slaving on the wheels, and discovering what they were, there is no way I can move on to something else.
About halfway of the work into the wheels I purchased the roll bar, which was slightly used, and bought off another Mazda 3 owner who needed to go to a full cage and needed funding to run his 3 doing mountain climbs. And of course after the roll bar found its unlikely size inside of my car, began the full on strip.
My car weighs 300 pounds less than it did stock, is that many times louder, is driven almost every day to work and back home. People at shows freak out whenever I tell them it’s a daily car, but it is totally worth it when you hear a laugh and a big grin, and all of the thumbs up and smiles I get when people see the blue wheels.
The car has a long way to go, and this is just the beginning really. Within the next two years I expect it to be a race car on the streets appearance wise, have a fully built motor, can’t decide on boosting it still (I’m an NA guy I’m sorry, but man do I love it when boost kicks your butt), and find a way to lose a few more pounds.
Mod list.. or something like that:
Wheels & Suspension
MATSU Motorsports tower strut bar
BC Coilovers with Extreme Drop Package
Dominant Engineering Rear Camber Arms
Rays Engineering (2 pc.) GTP 17×8 / 9
Toyo Proxes 205/40 all around
TWM Short Throw shifter
SR*S Type HKS High Performance Exhaust
Takeda Short Ram Intake
NGK Laser Iridium plugs
Advanced Ignition Timing
CPe Rear Motor Mount
Hotchkis Full Sway bar Kit
Cordova Motorsports bored TB
Balance Shaft Delete
Custom Oil Baffle
Buddy Club Condenser Kit
Street Unit Passenger / Trans solid motor mounts
Debadged (2.3 & Batmanized M)
Type R stubby antenna
Red painted calipers
Bosch ICON wipers & wipers lowered
Rear wiper delete
Speedline Wide angle mirrors
Speedline side and rear clear reflectors
Side molding delete
Red taillight tint
RE Amemiya Speed 3 wing addon
DDM 6k HID
Front Wiper delete
CPE center gauge pod
White interior trim
RJS Racing 5 pt. Harness
Autpower Roll Bar
Aeroforce Twin Scangauges
INTERIOR DELETE. Minus the dash. (for now)