11 October 2007

Power conversion

Aussies put their rugby defeat behind them with 282bhp Mazda3 MPS

Mazda3 MPS

Leaving the hyper-futuristic Tokyo creations behind for a minute, here's an Aussie concept that's far less cutting-edge but, in its own way, every bit as crazy.

We'd never considered the 256bhp Mazda3 MPS as a car that needed any more power, but that hasn't stopped the Australian division of Mazda Motorsport going ahead and doing just that.

This is the Mazda3 MPS Extreme, which - thanks to a reworked engine management system - now develops a frankly worrying 282bhp.

Mazda says the power upgrade will boost the performance by 'about 20 per cent' which, considering that the standard MPS will reach 60mph in just over six seconds, could mean the Extreme hitting the same speed in the low fives. If - and this is a big if - it can get the power on the road.

It's not just the engine management that has been revised: the Extreme gets a sports exhaust system and a neat-looking set of 19-inch wheels. It also sits some 25mm lower on its springs than the stock MPS, with wider wheelarches and bigger spoilers to create that authentic Outback Chav-Chic effect.

Sadly, the Extreme is just a demonstration model at the moment, and Mazda hasn't confirmed that it'll go into production. Here's hoping it does: sure, it'll torque steer like hell, but the Aussies need something to smile about after the rugby.

You didn't think we'd get right the way through an Australian story without mentioning it, did you?

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