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#21
Tom Sager

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And why would they do that? 

The car makes more power than EVERY other SM out there, a little less tq, little less revvs.. No one who has been historically at the front is racing them to show they are off?  The Runoffs are heading back to Road America, so you want to take weight off of the car that makes the most HP? 

 

 Meanwhile Konrad nearly podiumed with his at Homestead in four car break away two weeks ago and Danny won both days at Daytona in one he had never even driven in a 60 car field. Sager choses his NA1.8 over his VVT in most cases. Marc Cefalo drives one and he builds more cars than all of us.  You think he is just trying to give all of us an advantage?  I would think if he felt the cars were not a good choice he would not have built one and continually choose it over VVTs  and 99's he has raced and has at his disposal? Maybe he just feels sorry for all of us and wants to give us a better chance ;)

Wow this got lively.  For the record as the rules are right now I would choose my VVT over the NA1.8 for any important race.  Sentimentally speaking I love the '95 and it has some great history on the track and some fun history with the builder Mike Tesch and competitively speaking it's close to my '01.  

 

When the rule change to remove the restrictor plate and increase the weight to 2400 was under consideration I did a very careful test at Blackhawk to see how much quicker the car would be in the new configuration.  4 sessions with 2 each at then current 2350/47mm and 2 at proposed rules 2400/none showed that the car was no quicker.  Averaging best laps across the sessions it was within less than a tenth of a second difference.  It was a cool dry day nearly identical conditions to my last time out there with the VVT and I was .2 - .3 slower than the VVT times on a 1.9 mile track. 

 

Also back in November I took a another look at data for tracks in our area (Blackhawk, Gingerman, Mid-Ohio and Road America) and in the case of the first 3 the majority of time you're on the throttle is between 5000 and 6000 RPM and even some time below 5000 RPM.  The VVT car is stronger in this range for sure.  Even at Road America and a 2:44 second lap more on throttle time is spent under 6000 RPM than above.  So while an NA1.8 does make more peak power and it looks great on a dyno plot, that car doesn't get to use it often enough at a good sample of tracks.  If we could calculate it the NB's probably make slightly more power per lap and the shorter rev limiter is also another small contributor to that deficit.  This deficit though appears to be very small.

 

Then there is the steering/suspension difference which is harder to quantify but if you've driven both cars at 2400 pounds it shows up on the stopwatch and in how the car drives.  I'm quite sure that nobody intent on truly competing in an NB would opt to install the NA front suspension in exchange for a $10,000 check.  For a weight adjustment maybe but what's the over/under on that - 25 pounds?  50 pounds? Point is the newer car is slightly better in this regard. 

 

So in my view with supporting data the NA1.8 is still at a slight disadvantage.  It deserves a slight weight reduction to truly bring it to "even".  We're talking about a few tenths per lap.

 

Just over the holidays I started thinking about our upcoming season.  Both cars are inside. Both have strong engines under the hood.   Both need some TLC to be ready for 2020.  I made a list of to-do's for the '01 and that will be the car that gets worked on and entered in the first Majors race up here in May.  That's a compelling data point. 

 

Taking a bit of weight off the NA1.8 isn't going to upset the class or cause people to win that otherwise wouldn't or cause front runners to scrap their NB's and go NA1.8.  Justified though I'm convinced it is.


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#22
MPR22

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Wow this got lively.  For the record as the rules are right now I would choose my VVT over the NA1.8 for any important race.  Sentimentally speaking I love the '95 and it has some great history on the track and some fun history with the builder Mike Tesch and competitively speaking it's close to my '01.  
 
When the rule change to remove the restrictor plate and increase the weight to 2400 was under consideration I did a very careful test at Blackhawk to see how much quicker the car would be in the new configuration.  4 sessions with 2 each at then current 2350/47mm and 2 at proposed rules 2400/none showed that the car was no quicker.  Averaging best laps across the sessions it was within less than a tenth of a second difference.  It was a cool dry day nearly identical conditions to my last time out there with the VVT and I was .2 - .3 slower than the VVT times on a 1.9 mile track. 
 
Also back in November I took a another look at data for tracks in our area (Blackhawk, Gingerman, Mid-Ohio and Road America) and in the case of the first 3 the majority of time you're on the throttle is between 5000 and 6000 RPM and even some time below 5000 RPM.  The VVT car is stronger in this range for sure.  Even at Road America and a 2:44 second lap more on throttle time is spent under 6000 RPM than above.  So while an NA1.8 does make more peak power and it looks great on a dyno plot, that car doesn't get to use it often enough at a good sample of tracks.  If we could calculate it the NB's probably make slightly more power per lap and the shorter rev limiter is also another small contributor to that deficit.  This deficit though appears to be very small.
 
Then there is the steering/suspension difference which is harder to quantify but if you've driven both cars at 2400 pounds it shows up on the stopwatch and in how the car drives.  I'm quite sure that nobody intent on truly competing in an NB would opt to install the NA front suspension in exchange for a $10,000 check.  For a weight adjustment maybe but what's the over/under on that - 25 pounds?  50 pounds? Point is the newer car is slightly better in this regard. 
 
So in my view with supporting data the NA1.8 is still at a slight disadvantage.  It deserves a slight weight reduction to truly bring it to "even".  We're talking about a few tenths per lap.
 
Just over the holidays I started thinking about our upcoming season.  Both cars are inside. Both have strong engines under the hood.   Both need some TLC to be ready for 2020.  I made a list of to-do's for the '01 and that will be the car that gets worked on and entered in the first Majors race up here in May.  That's a compelling data point. 
 
Taking a bit of weight off the NA1.8 isn't going to upset the class or cause people to win that otherwise wouldn't or cause front runners to scrap their NB's and go NA1.8.  Justified though I'm convinced it is.




Tom is there an easy way to adjust the rev limiter up? I have always thought that was low hanging fruit and would have a meaningful results for the NA 1.8. Dynos and racetracks are definitely not the same thing and we get paid to win races .

Honestly think if the SMAC did another CTH with a big change on the NA 1.8, that would hasten the conversion of the top guys to Spec MX-5, which is inevitable in the next two to three years anyways.

If I had the money, I would build a 99 for this years runoffs, but I had to build a new car last year and the CTH at VIR was the VVT so it got built. So look for me to finish in the P-6-8 range based on the 99s that will be there. We will see how the Sprints go and maybe I will win the lottery in between then and the runoffs.
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#23
gerglmuff2

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wasn't the reason Jim hasn't built a ringer 1.6 and proved to us all a 1.6 could win because of getting the car down to weight? should be able to make weight in an NA8 if you can make weight with an NB ...... 


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#24
Tom Sager

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Tom is there an easy way to adjust the rev limiter up? I have always thought that was low hanging fruit and would have a meaningful results for the NA 1.8. Dynos and racetracks are definitely not the same thing and we get paid to win races .

Honestly think if the SMAC did another CTH with a big change on the NA 1.8, that would hasten the conversion of the top guys to Spec MX-5, which is inevitable in the next two to three years anyways.

If I had the money, I would build a 99 for this years runoffs, but I had to build a new car last year and the CTH at VIR was the VVT so it got built. So look for me to finish in the P-6-8 range based on the 99s that will be there. We will see how the Sprints go and maybe I will win the lottery in between then and the runoffs.

Short of ECU modification don't see a way to fix rev limiter and that alone isn't a big thing.  Just another small factor. IMO it's the older style front suspension that is the main deficit of the car.  At the same weight as the '99 the NA 1.8 simply won't drive through corners as consistently over the course of a race.  Dynamically the alignment and geometry changes NA to NB are different.  More bump steer in the NA's among other differences. 

 

I've got a lot of $ invested in my '95.  Would like it to be on par with the others and it's close. The NA1.8 has been yanked around for years rules-wise.  It's not going to hurt the class to give it a little help.  People have differing opinions, but there seems to be more evidence (real world data) that the car is off a tick or two.

 

Throw it a bone!


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#25
Jim Drago

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wasn't the reason Jim hasn't built a ringer 1.6 and proved to us all a 1.6 could win because of getting the car down to weight? should be able to make weight in an NA8 if you can make weight with an NB ...... 

 

Jim did build a 1.6 that could win races and did in 2012/2013.. It changed nothing, the whiners continued to whine. 

 

However as I said I am willing to put my money up to show that the NA18  can be driven 1/2 second faster than it is currently being campaigned. Thats as far as I am willing to go on my dollar. But you are welcome to spend some of yours rather than run your mouth ;) .  


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#26
gerglmuff2

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Jim did build a 1.6 that could win races and did in 2012/2013.. It changed nothing, the whiners continued to whine. 

 

However as I said I am willing to put my money up to show that the NA18  can be driven 1/2 second faster than it is currently being campaigned. Thats as far as I am willing to go on my dollar. But you are welcome to spend some of yours rather than run your mouth ;) .  

 

dont make me look like the ass, i believe your direct quote was something along the lines of if you could make weight in a 1.6, you would "make it your mission" to prove it could win, to shut up the NA6 whiners. that statement seemed to show a lot of motivation to prove parity is good. im just saying, you could make weight in an NA8 a lot easier than an NA6. 

these are all your statements. don't try to make me look like the ass. dont be mad at me. 

i personally dont think the NA8 needs any help. 


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#27
Jim Drago

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dont make me look like the ass, i believe your direct quote was something along the lines of if you could make weight in a 1.6, you would "make it your mission" to prove it could win, to shut up the NA6 whiners. that statement seemed to show a lot of motivation to prove parity is good. im just saying, you could make weight in an NA8 a lot easier than an NA6. 

these are all your statements. don't try to make me look like the ass. dont be mad at me. 

i personally dont think the NA8 needs any help. 

I think you are doing this on your own without any of my help. You are welcome to quote anything I have said.

But again, I have done exactly what you are saying I said in 12/13 and it accomplished nothing?  Why should "I" have to do it again?  

 

FWIW, I hate the 1.6 and would NEVER build one less a serious over dog and I could make weight.  I know I have said that before.  


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#28
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#29
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Short of ECU modification don't see a way to fix rev limiter and that alone isn't a big thing.  Just another small factor. IMO it's the older style front suspension that is the main deficit of the car.  At the same weight as the '99 the NA 1.8 simply won't drive through corners as consistently over the course of a race.  Dynamically the alignment and geometry changes NA to NB are different.  More bump steer in the NA's among other differences. 

 

I've got a lot of $ invested in my '95.  Would like it to be on par with the others and it's close. The NA1.8 has been yanked around for years rules-wise.  It's not going to hurt the class to give it a little help.  People have differing opinions, but there seems to be more evidence (real world data) that the car is off a tick or two.

 

Throw it a bone!

 

 

Like I said earlier the need to make cars more eqaul makes no sense when the class will be going to the Spec MX-5 route sooner than later.  I suspect the vintage series will be the place to land for all of the NA and NB's that are no longer welcome at SCCA and NASA. 


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#30
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Like I said earlier the need to make cars more eqaul makes no sense when the class will be going to the Spec MX-5 route sooner than later.  I suspect the vintage series will be the place to land for all of the NA and NB's that are no longer welcome at SCCA and NASA. 

We'll see how quickly Spec MX-5 gains in numbers.  There's a lot to like about the class on paper but it seems that the barrier to entry (cost) is a higher than was/is Spec Miata and that will likely slow down the ramp up or transition.  Might be a few years or more before the new class is of the same size.

 

Regardless though SCCA and NASA should work every year to keep their largest classes happy and fairly handicapped.  From what data I have, a small weight adjustment to the NA1.8 won't make it the car to have and I can't imagine the SMAC making a decision that would upset the apple cart, nor do I want that. 


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#31
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Let me preface this by saying I have a VVT, a 99 and I have access to an NA1.8 . I ran all three cars last year, doing back to back testing, specifically looking at what the weapon of choice would be for VIR. In the end I chose the VVT because it allows me faster recovery from my mistakes. But it wasn't the fastest car!! - OH yes and it also burst into flames!!!!!

 

With regard to the NA 1.8 vs 99 vs VVT I have personal experience from the same-day at both Daytona, Road Atlanta and VIR.

 

Last year, at Road Atlanta SARRC, I felt my '99 was a little off compared to the rest of the field on test day (was running 1:45's) so Mike Rossini loaned me his NA 1.8. It was the first time I had ever sat in his car, or in ANY NA1.8

Did one out lap, 2nd lap was under my '99 times, qualified on pole, and won the Sunday Race.

 

In August I took Rossini's NA1.8 to Daytona, and raced some of the fastest Daytona guys and won both races. Carter, Pardus, Gonzales, Collum, Davison and more and took the wins - honestly my car had the upper hand and it just ran on so much better at the top end without the limitations of the restrictor. 

 

Yes, I feel that the NA1.8, just like the '99, lacks the VVT grunt off the corner, but the NA1.8 has more than the '99 at the top and so much more than the VVT at the top.

 

From what I have personally seen on Rossini dyno runs (yes I know not all runs were done on the same day, but I have been privvy to data from hundreds of dyno runs over the years, so I have a pretty decent handle on the typical numbers shown on Rossini's dyno - so here are the typical great-to-unicorn numbers

 

NA1.8    130HP - 120TQ  (250 combined)

NB 99    129HP - 120TQ (149 combined)

NB VVT 126HP - 124TQ  (250 combined)

 

Once again, these are not numbers run on same day, and your numbers might vary depending on so many other factors, but I feel very comfortable with this characterization. Hope this helps for others trying to make the decision


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#32
gerglmuff2

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I think you are doing this on your own without any of my help. You are welcome to quote anything I have said.

But again, I have done exactly what you are saying I said in 12/13 and it accomplished nothing?  Why should "I" have to do it again?  

 

FWIW, I hate the 1.6 and would NEVER build one less a serious over dog and I could make weight.  I know I have said that before.  

 

 

 

 

well at least you are consistent in your hatred of the 1.6.  :toast: 

you wouldnt have to drop a pound to run an NA8, that was my only point, which you confirmed in your below post. 


again, i dont think the NA8 needs any help. i think we need to take some drag off the 1.6s (not weight)


 

Jim would never build a 1.6 unless he got his fat ass down 100 lbs.   And you are again incorrect in your assumption . Jim and others have cars that we know can win and have a lot of money invested. Why would we build a 1.6 car? The ONLY way we build a 1.6 car is if it is at a CLEAR overdog status.  IMO it is not there. I think many believe it is or really close.   But if we are looking for "parity", no front runner with a very good NB car is going to blow 30k plus on a car just for fun.  


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#33
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well at least you are consistent in your hatred of the 1.6.  :toast: 

you wouldnt have to drop a pound to run an NA8, that was my only point, which you confirmed. 


again, i dont think the NA8 needs any help. i think we need to take some drag off the 1.6s (not weight)


 

You are continuing to make yourself look like an ass, without any of my help :) 


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#34
Steve Scheifler

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Great post Danny, thanks. I’d be interested in your thoughts about the NA handling, ease of recovery, compared to the NBs. Not entirely unlike your reason to select the VVT last year for it’s mistake-masking torque, the improved suspension geometry of the NB is often said to make it less prone to mistakes and easier to drive at the limit cleanly for the duration of a race. Did you get any sense of that or did your mad skills render it irrelevant? :)
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#35
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We'll see how quickly Spec MX-5 gains in numbers.  There's a lot to like about the class on paper but it seems that the barrier to entry (cost) is a higher than was/is Spec Miata and that will likely slow down the ramp up or transition.  Might be a few years or more before the new class is of the same size.

I generally agree with you and MPR that Spec MX5 will grow significantly, but not be a real threat to SM car counts for 2-3 years (ie steal significant crossover drivers).  Given the opening up of historic race groups to SM, it’s likely that there will be a lot of SM’s on track for a long time.  Just not necessarily in SCCA or NASA.
 

This time line accelerates if some of the top drivers begin to campaign Spec MX5 as they are only (currently) about 15% more expensive than a top flight SM build, but of course probably 50% more expensive than a budget SM build.  We will know more by next year about car count.  For sure this build cost is going to be more than most in SM are willing to pay - and playing in the Challenge series is not cheap either.  So some of the driver market will come from other classes.  
 

2 weeks ago I ordered a Spec MX5.  Lots appealing to me, not least that it’s so tightly specified that there will be (?) no bitching about different years - which we have been doing on this site for as long as I remember.  And my guess is that it will be fun to drive.  Fun is fungible and I don’t want to wait 2-3 years.  I’ll still play periodically in SM.

 

Regarding the NA6 and NA8, I (along with others) argued for them to get the better NB front suspension years ago and that was (foolishly in my opinion) shot down by a very vocal group of NA owners.  I found myself subsequently getting quickly bored about parity debates from the same crowd who always somehow wanted to castrate my 99 in power or weight rather than make simple and genuine parity improvements to their cars. While I have sparred from time to time with Bench, his tenacity on changing the NA cooling was good for the class and a simple move.  They should have, and still could adopt the improved suspension.  But I doubt SMAC will bring that one to the table again.  Once bitten.....

 

CNJ


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#36
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I generally agree with you and MPR that Spec MX5 will grow significantly, but not be a real threat to SM car counts for 2-3 years (ie steal significant crossover drivers).  Given the opening up of historic race groups to SM, it’s likely that there will be a lot of SM’s on track for a long time.  Just not necessarily in SCCA or NASA.
 

This time line accelerates if some of the top drivers begin to campaign Spec MX5 as they are only (currently) about 15% more expensive than a top flight SM build, but of course probably 50% more expensive than a budget SM build.  We will know more by next year about car count.  For sure this build cost is going to be more than most in SM are willing to pay - and playing in the Challenge series is not cheap either.  So some of the driver market will come from other classes.  
 

2 weeks ago I ordered a Spec MX5.  Lots appealing to me, not least that it’s so tightly specified that there will be (?) no bitching about different years - which we have been doing on this site for as long as I remember.  And my guess is that it will be fun to drive.  Fun is fungible and I don’t want to wait 2-3 years.  I’ll still play periodically in SM.

 

 

 

I'm thinking the price difference will be greater. I think a 35-40k Spec Miata is likely a 55-60k  Mx5 or will be VERY soon.  

 

Spec Mx5 will need the same competition level as Sm and some marquee players to switch. Mazda is combating that by throwing big contingency at it hoping it will entice some of the front runners in Sm and other classes to join in.  Personally I think the class is 5 years early and will eventually hurt SM, so while I am building one, I am not a huge supporter and don't really like the idea at this time.  I think it is early and may eventually hurt the best thing in racing.  What you said about the parity and different cars etc. If ANY significant changes are made in parity in SM, I fear people may do EXACTLY what you did, just build the spec Mx5.  There are minor differences in the years, some differences, but will be far far less than Sm.  

 

What people will find out quickly and not like much is these cars are more fragile than Sm and a minor front end collision will cost 4 to 5 x what it does in Sm. The bumpers, headlights, tail lights , hoods, fenders are very expensive. Throw in a $1200 radiator it will add up fast. 


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#37
Steve Scheifler

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It’s all about critical mass, isn’t it? If enough top SM teams suddenly switched by start of next season things would happen very fast. If just one or two make the move early but find themselves up against enough talent from outside SM, that will start drawing the top away from SM sooner as well. Both seem unlikely to happen that quickly and although it may seem otherwise at times, not everyone at the front in SM is so well funded that they can just switch on a whim, and as Jim says it will surely cost more. Still, if there aren’t any major problems it will likely start draining the SM talent pool and eventually hit that critical mass, leaving SM still very popular (and maybe even growing) but less prestigious to win.
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#38
Dave D.

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The one issue I worry about the most in SM is any knee-jerk reaction in weight,plates,etc....in the name of parity,done using a small sample of data from just a season or two at the national level. Then some mindless sheep dump the cars they have to get the flavor of the year. That makes car values very volatile,but perhaps this is good for the shops building cars .  I feel that what happens at your Majors,HST or Runoffs level becomes the benchmark for the adjustments that affect us schmoes at the regional level, and,IMHO, don't think that is a realistic representation of how good/bad each generation of car is. Example, it is being argued that there should be more adjustments made to the VVT as it is winning most events(at a National level),yet here in my region there has been only 1 win by a VVT with 1.6 and 99s being the dominant cars. Now is that due to inequality of the platforms or the drivers of those particular cars are just that much more adapted/getting the most from their particular car? Now,I understand that is an even smaller sample of results, and I am interested in feedback from other regions. Wasn't there a 1.8NA at Homestead and/or Sebring that did very well?  I just would like get my point across that I hope the schmoes in the trenches at the regional level are also taken into consideration for any performance changes that may affect them differently than the cream of the crop at the higher levels.....


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#39
Danny Steyn

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 Wasn't there a 1.8NA at Homestead and/or Sebring that did very well?  I just would like get my point across that I hope the schmoes in the trenches at the regional level are also taken into consideration for any performance changes that may affect them differently than the cream of the crop at the higher levels.....

 

In terms of fast NA1.8's that I have seen in the SE and NE recently - and these are just my observations and opinions

 

1. Evan Karls previous car NA1.8- VERY Fast,

2. Conrad Kzaczyks current NA 1.8 - VERY fast and faster than most on long straights - Competitive at front of current HST races

3. Marc Cefalo's NA1.8 - very competitive - Competitive at front of current HST races

4. Mike Rossini's NA1.8 - VERY fast, especially on longer straights - Competitive at front of current HST races

 

have not seen a fast NA1.6 being campaigned by a front runner in some time 


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#40
Chris Lefferdink

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 There are minor differences in the years, some differences, but will be far far less than Sm.  

Sounds like the Spec MX-5 forums will be pretty boring.


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