The Mazdaspeed platform is a pretty well-supported car in the engine performance and suspension market, but it seems to be lacking in some of the markets that truly allow you, as the driver, to connect to the car. This is especially true for the GenWon owners. Well, CorkSport has decided to help the forgotten GenWon owners become more intimately connected to their Speed3. So what are the components of a car that the driver is most intimate with? I would have to say the pedals, seat, steering wheel, and, of course, the shifter.
So which of those did we release? It’s not pedals. (Autozone has that covered.) Unfortunately, it’s not a seat, but that would be awesome. It’s not a steering wheel…yet. (Oops. Did I say that out loud?) I’m happy to say it’s a short shifter, and not the kind that goes under the hood. Sure, there are a few options out there, but they leave a lot on the table and $500 seems ridiculous.
Introducing, the all-new CorkSport Adjustable Short Shifter for the 2007-2009 Mazdaspeed 3.
Manufactured from high-grade 6061-T6 aluminum, this precision machined double adjustable short shifter is sure to give you that intimate connection and control with your Speed3. Plus, it’s 100% designed and manufactured right here in the Pacific NW, USA.
So what sets the CorkSport Short Shifter apart from the competition? This short shifter is double-adjustable, but not in the way the competition defines it. First, there are four throw positions ranging from OEM throw distance to the 35% shorter throw distance. Second, the shift knob height is adjustable from 11.75 to 9.5 inches tall with the OEM height being 11.125 inches. Lastly, just look at it: It’s gorgeous. It’s a shame it gets hidden under the shift boot.
Take a look at the comparison images below:
Of course, a product like this doesn’t come to life overnight. There were many hours of design, testing, and revision done to verify that the product you receive is the best it can be. Below are a couple images of 3D-printed prototype we made on our 3D printer to help speed up the R&D.
In addition to the prototype testing, we also perform FEA (Finite Element Analysis) on all applicable components to verify they’re strong enough to last for many, many years. Below is a complete CAD model and the FEA for the throw adjustment arm with 50 lbf applied to the shortest throw position. This is the worst case scenario, so if it doesn’t fail here it won’t fail in the other positions.
With the 50 lbf applied to the arm, the maximum stress was ~10k psi which is great news. This component alone is 4 times stronger than it needs to be if you were able to apply 50 lbf to the arm.
I have personally been using this shifter in my 2009 Speed3 for a month now and have nothing but great things to say. Don’t take it from me, though. Here is a quote from a beta tester:
I’m taking a spirited drive today to get a better feel for it. So far I’m enthusiastic about the (extreme) difference. When shifting with the OEM shifter the throw was so long that I spent a lot of effort synchronizing the clutch with the motion of shifting—essentially slipping the clutch while completing the motion of going into gear. With your short throw shifter the entire motion has changed dramatically and all I have to concentrate on is the clutch, and that’s been reduced by ~50%. I just throw it into gear and pop the clutch. It’s so stiff anyway and really likes to engage/disengage near the end when releasing pressure on the pedal that the motion becomes much more fluid. The shifter motion has gotten much tighter and requires (what feels like) more pressure to move between gears, but the motion itself has been reduced so much that it creates a sense of precision and removes (what felt like) sloppiness when using the OEM shifter. I’m sure that adjusting the height & throw from such an extreme position would reduce what I would describe as the “rigidity” of the shifts, although I intend to continue using it in the position we installed it.
My 2 cents so far. Overall I’d highly recommend.
Hope all is well,
So what are you waiting for? Take the leap, you won’t be disappointed!
-Barett, CS Engineering