Izzabell From The Starting Line

To start you off on Izzabell’s story.

She’s a Mazda Mx5 mark 1 1.6. All the way from japan, she was imported over here in 1997. Originally silver but now a gorgeous pale blue but, we will get to that later! Back in 2015 we bought our new love, from Andy Stott at Auto link. We asked him to keep an eye out for a Mx5 for a long time and we were greeted with a total gem, on the outside. Maybe not so much in the engine bay. We had a few hiccups, shall we say. The head gasket had gone, the water pump bolt had vanished. Causing a few issues. however, for us that was not a problem. Despite all that, she is completely rust free, even passed the… screwdriver test! She was a steal at £500, we jumped at the opportunity like any other Mx5 enthusiast would. Even though she didn’t have a MOT when we got her, we saw all the risk and we were willing to take the challenge. Despite her age she had low mileage and a tonne of service history. Including every single receipt since 1997. As you could imagine her paper work folder is huge.

Even back then she was a little pocket rocket, with a newly refreshed engine. Including a new head gasket and water pump, keeping her true to the original 1.6cc. So, after a quick MOT test she passed with only one small advisory. Which being the high level stop light flickering. Sorted in no time, she was ready for the road once again.

In 2015 we installed a super charged kit in Izzabell. The reason we decided to go for the kraftwerks super charged kit was because of its compacted size, high adiabatic efficacy and low vibration movements. This particular supercharger uses a unique traction drive technology. Instead of using a supercharger that works on frictional forces between rolling elements. In case you were wondering what come in the kit I have listed the parts below from the website ( https://h-tune.co.uk/kraftwerks-supercharger-system-kit-mazda-mx-5-99-05/?gclid=Cj0KCQjwgOzdBRDlARIsAJ6_HNnp9XL1S5LnWO4Q5R_mXov_yH3S7_ou9e9s_Z4-Me3meTOpc-p8dyIaAoCvEALw_wcB )

Parts within the kit:
• 99-’05 ‘kit: 195 hp / 150 lb-ft torque @ 9.5 psi (#150-10-9805B)
• Rotrex C30-74 supercharger (optional C30-94)
• High-flow front-mount intercooler (2.5 x 6 x 12 in.)
• Grams Performance 350cc/min. fuel injectors
• Grams Performance 255 lph fuel pump
• Plug-and-play fuel injector connectors
• Electronic Fuel Box
• Recirculating bypass valve
• Powder-coated aluminium intake and intercooler piping
• High-quality CNC-machined brackets
• Automatic belt tensioning system
• High-quality fasteners, clamps, and hardware
• Comprehensive installation manual
• MAF relocation system
• Reusable high-flow air filter
• High-quality silicone hoses and adapters
• Rotrex self-contained oiling system with oil cooler
• Retain all factory accessories

We also, added a back cage from TR Lane which we installed our self. We added the back cage for safety reasons. Keeping us in the guidelines of track events, regulations and rules. All this was done so we could take her to the track at a later date.

In 2016 we decided to show off Izzabell’s potential. By showcasing her at the following events: Goodwood and Castle combe. During our time at Castle combe we took part in a charity event for Mission Motorsport. We did this by offering, passenger rides around castle combe’s track, with all funds raised going to Mission Motorsport. As well as, participating in a hill climb at Gurston down.

The reason we got Izzabell in the first place, is so she could become the Basset down balancing show car. After we showed her off and wowed many people, we decided to make her ready for the race track with all the right gear. We wanted Izzabell to be more than just a road car because, of all the great times we had during racing. This was also a opportunity to promote what we do as a business with our own pride and joy. During our time at the track we decided to make her officially a race car. So, in 2017 that’s exactly what we did. This is her story of becoming a road legal race car from being a pretty little road car but, still maintaining her beauty. So, now that you are brought up to speed this is how it all happened.

Late 2017, Izzabell was completely taken apart, down to every last nut, bolt and washer. She was fitted with a brand-new roll cage to MSA standard which was installed by custom cages.


Then the business took a turn, we moved in to a larger facility. This allowed us to work on more projects, provide a larger variety of services and expand the company. So, all work on Izzabell stopped which takes us into 2018.

In the summer of 2018 all work resumed on Izzabell.
To kick start her progress, she was rapture painted in the interior areas and the engine bay. (This next part, I was telling you about earlier). Izz then, went to be painted pale blue, which was probably the hardest decision made when it came to Izzabell. However, it just worked so incredibly well on her. We nailed it! This where the hard graft came in, THE REBUILD!


Rebuilding Izz

To start of Izzabell’s new journey of becoming a race car, we began on suspension. We got the new parts from Miester-R. This was quite an easy step however, important. Afterwards, we had all the new parts such as: sub-frame and wish bone’s, powder coated then got to work installing. To make this step easier we did all of our prep beforehand, so we could progress quicker. Allowing us to present a better finish.

The adjustments we made on Izzabell’s reconditioned engine where: Changing the rods to max speeding steel connecting rods. Adding in new standard pistons and a piston ring set. Running on standard 1.8 compression. Topping it off with a standard cam shaft fitting and adjustable pulley. Ready to start a turbo conversion. This is our standard engine we recommend to all of our customers as we feel that it works best and is reliably great.

After a test run on our superflow dyno here at Basset down balancing LTD, Izzabell went on the ramp. The reason we ran Izzabell’s engine on the dyno was to check that all was good, with no dreaded leaks. However, we haven’t completed any power runs, due to the fact of we are in the process of a turbo conversion.

Before we put Izzabell engine in, we needed to fit all of the new fuel and brake lines in. So, she went up on the ramp and was fitted with the new pipes. After all the checks and the work was completed, we were ready to install the engine and gear box back into Izzabell.


Some of the parts we will be used from Izzabell’s original car that we kept. We had quite a few boxes to go through. Which led to sorting through what we are going to use, store for a later date and scrap. Once we had found the parts Izzabell needed, we had to clean them up and respray paint to make them look as good as new.

Back to the rebuilding of Izzabell.

Once we had found what we needed and discarded the parts we are unable to reuse, we were ready to continue. Starting with the radiator which is a Japspeed aftermarket from performance parts.

Then we fitted in the exhaust from MX5 parts. We wrapped it with a titanium wrap.



That’s you all caught up, Due to this being an ongoing project she’ s still in progress.

Follow us on social media for a notification of updates about the Izzabell’s blog.

Social media links are at the bottom of the page.