Mad Mike’s wild new Mazda MX-5 drift weapon

Mad Mike MX-5
Mad Mike MX-5

‘Mad’ Mike Whiddett has revealed his new four-rotor Mazda MX-5 drift car for this year’s Formula D drift series. 

The coolest thing about the Formula D drift series is that you can basically compete in any car you like, provided it smokes the rear wheels only and is fitted with all the requisite safety gear. Competing cars this year include a new Ford Mustang piloted by Vaughn Gitten Jr., a rear-wheel drive nitrous-injected V8 Volkswagen Passat steered by Tanner Foust, and Toyota GT86/Scion FR-S. There’s also some cool old-school JDM goodness with Nissan S15s and 180SXs competing. Basically, if you can drift it, you can drive it.


This year Mad Mike will be piloting a highly modified NC Mazda MX-5 in the Formula D championship. It’s a race weapon built from the ground up by a company in New Zealand, packing a twin-turbo four rotor engine which develops over 1000hp on its low boost setting. The NZ-based tuning shop reckon it has the potential to dish out over 1500hp with the boost wound up. The insane power comes curtesy of two massive Garrett GTX40 turbos which were chosen for their smooth power delivery and lag-free characteristics. Of course, Mad Mike is no stranger when it comes to high-horsepower rotary engines – his old RX-7 drift car was also powered by a bonkers turbo rotary.


Power in the MX-5 is sent to the rear wheels via a six-speed sequential gearbox, and suspension is all custom as you’d expect. The front and rear tracks are crazy wide and the ordinarily open roadster boasts a full roll cage and stripped interior with carbon bucket race seats.

The 1000hp MX-5 drifter promises to be one hell of a ride, especially when you consider how short the wheelbase is. Short wheelbase cars like the MX-5 are usually quite snappy when it comes to going sideways, making them harder to control. And with such a colossal power output Mad Mike will have his work cut out.

Speedhunters have more details and images of the wild Mazda MX-5 drifter. 

Written by Lewis Shaw

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