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In the Headlights – Tuner Cars v2.0 {{favouriteCount}} Quantity of Likes

30 May 2018

There are two types of car enthusiast in this world. Those who keep their cars completely standard and would never even dream of adding non-original windscreen wiper blades, and those who buy a car and drive it straight home and start adding the wheels, air filter, intake, spoilers and other bits they bought before the car even arrived. The tuners.

Those are the people we’re aiming this week’s ITH at – those who love cars but always want a little more… after all, car manufacturers always play it a little safe so why not give them a little boost? (sometimes literally). So we’ve chosen four already-fantastic cars that have been worked over by some very reputable tuning companies to give you faster, louder, more OTT versions. I’ll take the BBR Turbo MX-5 please….

ABT RS5-R

ABT is no ordinary tuning company. In Germany they are classed as a car manufacturer in their own right, such is the level of change they do to their donor cars much like Brabus or RUF. So you know when they make a full car it’s going to be something special – especially when they start with the stunning Audi RS5 as a base. To that car they tune the engine to a staggering 524bhp, but it’s the rest of the package that truly impresses. There’s a styling kit that turns the already aggressive RS5 into the super-angry looking RS5-R with spoilers, canards, new lighter wheels and they also improve the suspension. What you end up with is a seriously talented sports car with head-turning looks, a viscious exhaust note and performance to shame the R8. If Mr. ABT is reading this, yes we’d like to drive it please…

Techart 718 Boxster S

Ahh the Porsche Boxster. In latest 718 S guise with the PDK gearbox it’s widely thought of as being the best sports car on sale. But as ever, some people want more and the GTS is still too ‘mainstream’ so that’s where the aftermarket comes in, in this case Techart. Techart have been tuning Porsche’s since they had massive whale tails and were the epitome of yuppy excess, so they know what they’re doing. In this case they tune the engine (so much easier with these new turbo lumps) to just shy of 400bhp, revise the suspension and add some styling revisions to make it stand out. It really does make for a far more aggressive and focused Boxster, sure it’s expensive but you’re almost guaranteed that you won’t come across another on the roads. What price exclusivity?

Motech BMW M140i

Unlike the other cars in this week’s In the Headlight’s promotion, the Motech Edition M140i doesn’t have any engine tuning, instead it’s all about the handling. Now the M140i isn’t exactly a badly handling car, the opposite in fact, but as ever production cars always have to be compromised in the way they ride, price of parts etc so Motech have decided to make the best M140i you can buy as a package. So they replace the springs, add a strut brace, add spacers and do a full geometry setup to turn the M140i into a proper B-road weapon. You also get some audio improvements thanks to a new exhaust and air filter, while the outside gets some visual enhancements too. It may look standard but this Motech Edition will surprise quite a few people…

BBR MX-5 Turbo Stage 1

The latest ‘ND’ generation Mazda MX-5 is one of the best handling cars on sale today in any price bracket. The combination of light weight, small body and great steering, along with a playful chassis setup and truly exotic styling means that it’s incredibly popular. The only thing it is lacking is power with the standard car putting out 158bhp. Sure it feels quick enough thanks to the low curb weight, but it needs a little boost – step up BBR. BBR GTi have been tuning and turbocharging cars since the 70’s and MX-5’s since the Mk1 so it makes sense they’d have a go with the new model. And what a go they’ve had – their turbo kit boosts power to 258bhp, which gives a power/weight ratio of 240bhp/tonne. This means improved acceleration, chopping a huge 2 seconds off the 0-62mph time. But this isn’t just an engine mod, we also add the exhaust, suspension, aero pack and wheels to make this the ultimate MX-5.

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Tuners like to be fast, and you’ll need to be to get these cars too as they’re only available until midnight on Sunday!

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