Video: A Chap Called Bruce’s V6-Powered Miata!

Why not swap a Jaguar AJ30 V6 into an Miata? Mazda Miatas have always have a certain appeal to the road racer in all of us, but the sad reality of these cars is that they’re totally gutless from the factory. A stock 1.6-liter B6ZE might make 105 horsepower on a good day, which leaves a little something to be desired. Sure, plenty of people have gone to forced induction with this motor, but aside from the real-life mechanical problems that come with blowers, there are a few good reasons to choose the V6.

Torque is one reason to choose the V6. With the 3.0-liter Ford Duratec making 216 lb-ft of twisting power at 4,100 rpm, the delivery and response is enviable. Sure, a turbocharged four-pot could match that level of torque, but chances are it would either be higher in the rev range, or without as broad a torque curve.

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The Jaguar V6, seen here with ITBs, offers 240 bellowing horses to propel the little roadster down the country road.

That smooth power delivery suits the nimble little bruiser perfectly, since it allows the novice driver to flirt a little closer to the limit than one could with a turbocharged engine. That short wheelbase makes the Miata a little nervous with the stock powerplant, so a peaky turbo would only make it more of a handful. With this Ford Duratec motor and its predictable power delivery, both the skilled driver and a green enthusiast can bring themselves closer to the limit.

Plus, the Miata has always been a driver’s car. Its open-air ambiance is bettered by the bellow of a stout V6; whistling turbos can’t compete. It gives the little Mazda a whole ‘nother appeal, since every blast through the countryside is improved tenfold if the engine note reverberates off the canyon walls.

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Finished in a brilliant dark green, that twin-tipped roadster looks more like a classic than ever before.

About the author

Tommy Parry

Tommy Parry has been racing and writing about racing cars for the past seven years. As an automotive enthusiast from a young age, he worked jobs revolving around cars throughout high school, and tried his hand on the race track on his 20th birthday. After winning his first outdoor kart race, Tommy began working as an apprentice mechanic to amateur racers in the Bay Area to sharpen his mechanical understanding. He has worked as a track day instructor and automotive writer since 2012, and continues to race karts, formula cars, sedans, and rally cars in the San Francisco region.
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