Back in the summer of 2013, I was looking to upgrade my lowly 2013 Mazda 3i Grand Touring to a Mazdaspeed 3. Unfortunately, my wife was not happy about having to learn stick — and I don’t have the patience to teach her. Then a friend told me about the newly designed Mazda 3 coming out with the 2.5 motor. At the time, it wasn’t available, but the new 6 was promising. I decided to take the 6 for a test drive and fell in love. So began my CorkSport journey . . .
I love the way the Mazda 6 handles and how responsive the automatic transmission is, along with the beautiful interior. But there were things that bugged me that I wanted to fix. My goal was to have an “OEM+ ride” that was not radically different from stock, but still improved on some of Mazda’s original design.
The first thing I wanted to change was ride height. I hated the wheel gap on the car. Since I was one of the first adopters of the 6, my choices were limited. I went with H&R springs, as those were the only option out at the time. Then there were the wheels. I loved the look of the stock GT wheels, but not so thrilled about being sunken in. So next came the Ichiba spacers. I was happy with the results at first, but then I saw the CorkSport Lowering Springs on a 6 at a CJ Wilson Mazda dealership.
I was immediately impressed with the stance. Needless to say, I ordered a set of CS springs right away. Still there were the wheels . . . Yeah, I liked them, but I didn’t like rolling on spacers. So, the research began again. I soon saw the Gram Lights 57FXX on the Mazda 6 Club Sport and was sold. Once the wheels arrived (they took a long 6 months from Japan), I swapped out the stocker/spacers combo and installed the CS lowering springs.
I was very pleased with the lower appearance of my 6. Furthermore, the handling was improved with the addition of the CS springs, the Koni yellow shocks, and of course, a CorkSport Front Strut Tower Bar.
This year saw other improvements to my ride. The first was the addition of the MV Tuning body kit. It was my first venture into installing body kits, but everything turned out great after some trial and error. The second was adding some power and sound to my 6 with the addition of the CorkSport Short Ram Intake and the CorkSport Cold Air Box. The sound and response from the intake, along with the heat-soak protection of the air box made this mod well worth the investment.
The thing that impressed me most through all of this was that the CorkSport team listened to customer feedback, resulting in some tweaks to product design. They also sent those tweaks to customers who had already purchased the products, including yours truly. That kind of follow-up and support is great to see from an aftermarket parts company.
Today, I am very happy with my completed “OEM+ 6” and believe I have achieved all the improvements I sought. Besides, I don’t want to be sleeping on the couch forever!
Photos by Brad Sillars Photography.