CorkSport’s Ultimate Driving Playlist

Think back to one of your most memorable drives. You can — no doubt — remember the road you were driving, who you were with, what Mazda you were cruising in, and what else? The music. Every great drive needs a soundtrack. When that familiar guitar line or chorus pipes through your speakers, you grip the wheel a little tighter, your foot instinctively pushes down a little harder on the pedal, and nostalgia takes over as your car hits those highway curves.

At CorkSport, we know that once you have the car and the parts, and maybe even the route to drive, the next thing you need is some great tunes. Whether it’s a modern banger or a classic rock song, you can always use some new tunes for your next road trip playlist. CorkSport’s suggestions, from old standbys to modern hits, will make sure your head’s nodding next time you hit the pavement with your Mazda.

“Slow Ride” by Foghat


For a song called “Slow Ride,” this tune sure makes you want to drive fast. Featured in the movie “Dazed and Confused,” this 1975 rock hit may tell you to “take it easy,” but we bet it will encourage you to put the pedal to the metal.

“Drive Slow” by Kanye West featuring Paul Wall and GLC


In contrast, the mellow thump of Kanye’s “Drive Slow” is the perfect accompaniment to cruising around town. Hitting the streets to look for some honeys? Put the windows down, bump this, and go out on patrol.

“Low Rider” by War


One of the all-time classic driving jams. To quote the Beastie Boys, “slow and low, that is the tempo,” and this funky, upbeat hit is ideal for any kind of drive. If you’re looking for a great twist on this standard, check out Amerigo Gazaway’s “Tenderoni (Lowrider Cruisin’ Mix)” that combines War, Chromeo, Marvin Gaye, and T.I.

“Ride Wit Me” by Nelly featuring St. Lunatics


Nelly may owe the IRS $2.4 million, but this joint ain’t broke! If you’re looking for a smooth song to have on as you pick up your lady, look no further. Good bass, smooth flow, and a catchy hook? Like the song says, “if shorty wanna rock, we rockin’ to this.”

“King of the Road” by Roger Miller


OK, this one’s pretty old school, we admit it. But, it’s also a quintessential driving song packed full of Americana, nostalgia, and that ol’ traveling spirit. Call it a classic, dub it a guilty pleasure, or tell your friends it was your grandpa’s favorite song. With us, you’ll have no shame toe-tapping to this classic.

“Car Song” by Spank Rock featuring Santigold


If you want to put your subwoofer through its paces, anything from Spank Rock’s catalogue will suffice. But with its car-centric title and lyrics, this rhyme-laden bass-boomer gets our pick for the jam you’ll most want to roll to.

“Old White Lincoln” by The Gaslight Anthem


We know you’d rather drive a slick Mazdaspeed 3 than an old, white Lincoln, but this earworm from New Jersey rock band The Gaslight Anthem is an incredible driving song. Heavy on the nostalgia, this tune is a love letter to youthful escapades and the cars that featured in those memories.

“Radar Love” by Golden Earring


No list of driving songs is complete without this masterpiece. With a churning, chugging bass line that forces your foot to lean on the gas (“I’ve been drivin’ all night, my hands are wet on the wheel. There’s a voice in my head that drives my heel.”) and lyrics you can belt out as you fly down the highway, if this song doesn’t make you want to drive you should see a doctor — you may actually be dead.

“Get Your Roll On” by Big Tymers


Maybe it’s how car-heavy most of the music videos were, but there’s something about late-1990s/early-2000s hip-hop that lends itself perfectly to rolling, windows down, with the volume cranked up. Needless to say, with this jam bumping in your Mazda, you’re required to get your roll on.

“Panama” by Van Halen


Much like that late-1990s hip-hop, classic rock feels like pure driving music. There’s something about it that grabs you by the guts and makes you want to drive. It doesn’t get much more classic than this track from Van Halen, which features engine-revving sound effects to boot. Hit the road, turn the volume up as far as it goes, and get ready to pound the ceiling as you shout, “PANAMA!”

“Neckbrace” by Ratatat


Sometimes, a great beat constructed by a two-man-band is all you need. There’s not much more than percussion and bass in this jam by Ratatat, but it thumps along in such an addictive way that there’s no way you’ll take a pit stop with it rumbling out of your speakers.

“Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen


Like we were gonna make a list of great driving songs and not include The Boss. Yeah, right! “Born in the U.S.A.,” “Dancing in the Dark,” really, you can take your pick. But, for our money, start with the classic “Born to Run” and just keep cruising through the Springsteen discography as you head off into the sunset.

“Levels” by Avicii


After a long week, sometimes getting up the adrenaline to hit the town on Friday night needs a jumpstart. “Levels” is basically audio caffeine. It’s electricity for your ears. It’s a shock to the system and fuel for epic evenings. “Get a good feeling” by bumping this.

“Black Betty” by Ram Jam


Though the meaning behind the lyrics is widely debated, we’ll stick to the interpretation that “Black Betty” is one helluva hot rod. I mean, it just feels like a driving song, so whatever else it may mean, this tune is a necessary jam when you hop in your ride.

“Have Love, Will Travel” by The Black Keys


This gritty, funky take on The Sonics’ original thumps along nicely as it pipes out of your speakers. Sometimes you just need a little low-fi soul delivering a gritty guitar riff to your night driving.

“S.O.B.” by Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats


When it’s hard not to stomp your feet or clap your hands to a song, you have the mark of a great road trip song. When that song also allows you to holler, “SONUVA BITCH!” at the top of your lungs, you know you’re driving with a winner on the radio.

“See You Again” by Wiz Khalifa featuring Charlie Puth


By far the most melancholy track on our driving playlist, this song from the “Furious 7” soundtrack is a tribute to the late, car-loving Paul Walker. While it might hit you right in the feels, it’s upbeat, catchy, and feels like a natural tune to get you thinking mistily about your local Mazda community.

“She Is Beautiful” by Andrew W.K.


Just substitute the word “car” every time Andrew W.K. says “girl” and you’ll see this rock anthem really is the perfect love song for your Mazda.

These tunes should get you started, but we’d love to hear about your favorite driving songs down in the comments. And if you take these jams on the road, take a picture, and tag us with #CorkSport when you post to Instagram!

Bucket (Seat) List: 10 Must-Drive Roads of the West

State Route 12 Utah

There’s nothing worse than being all dressed up with nowhere to go, right? Whether you’re itching to try out your Mazda 6’s new added power, your Miata’s updated handling, or you simply need a more scenic background to snap a new photo of your Mazdaspeed 3’s dope hood scoop, sometimes a trip down the road to the grocery store just doesn’t cut it. If you’re as passionate about the roads you drive as you are about the mods you install, or you’re simply looking to vary your daily driving route, this list of some of the best roads in the West will inspire you to take your Mazda to new frontiers.

Historic Columbia River Highway, Oregon

Since the Pacific Northwest is near and dear to our hearts, we’ll start with an amazing drive that’s close to home. Hop on U.S. Route 30 in Troutdale to begin the 75-mile journey to The Dalles that features a bit of everything that makes this area of the country stunning: tall trees, Columbia River views, waterfalls, and Mt. Hood. The winding, curvy road is a dream to drive, and you can stop along the way at sites like Multnomah Falls and Bridge of the Gods for photo ops with your Mazda.

Highway 101, Oregon

One of the few gorgeous natural features Oregon is known for that you can’t find along the Columbia is the ocean, but this coastal drive takes care of that. Some folks may take this route to tour historic lighthouses, but we love 101 because it allows you to trace the sweeping curves of Oregon’s rugged coastline from Astoria all the way to the California border. You’ll enjoy fresh salty air, great seaside driving, and loads of Oregon breweries to check out if you want to stop for the night and sample the local flavor. Remember that it takes a few days to do the drive even cruising speedily in your modded ride.

 

Three Rivers Highway, Oregon

Whether heading to or from the coast and Highway 101, the Three Rivers Highway (aka Oregon Route 22) is a twisty, curve-laden, extremely fun drive. It’s not the best when it’s dark and rainy, as visibility can get bad, but this trip from Salem to the ocean is a great ride to test your handling on. It’s also located right in the heart of CorkSport’s local region!

Olympic Peninsula Loop, Washington

Head north up I-5 for one of the most rustic scenic drives you can conquer without four-wheel drive. You can enjoy the great outdoors no matter which Mazda you’re in! This 330-mile trip features beaches, lakes, hikes, and camping as you circle Olympic National Park and Olympic National Forest. Sometimes you just have to get away from it all. All of it, except your Mazda, of course!

State Route 1, California

One of the most iconic American roads, right up there with Route 66, is the 655-mile route that stretches most of the length of California. On this journey, you’ll hit San Francisco, Los Angeles, and all the stunning coastline in between — the road even goes over the Golden Gate Bridge. The Pacific Coast Highway section through Malibu is another highlight you won’t want to miss on California 1! And it’s a great place to show off your ride to California girls, naturally.

State Route 12, Utah

Also known as “A Journey Through Time” Scenic Byway, this meandering desert drive gets you out of those tree-lined Pacific Northwest roadways and ocean drives and into some staggeringly impressive canyons and rock faces. Crossing through Bryce Canyon National Park as well as the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, this road won’t simply allow you to put your handling to the test; it offers scenery perfect for that new profile pic of you and your Mazda you’ve been meaning to take.

State Route 12 Utah

Million Dollar Highway, Colorado

Though you can take U.S. Route 550 all the way from Albuquerque, New Mexico to Montrose, Colorado, it’s the stretch between Silverton and Ouray in Colorado that will really wow you. The guardrail-free drive through Uncompahgre Canyon features narrow roads with steep drop-offs, so exercise caution. But hugging these mountain curves is definitely a thrilling drive. The road is often closed in winter, so check conditions before you prepare to zip through these bends. After this drive, if you feel like continuing the road trip, Route 50 through the Curecanti National Recreation Area is another great drive that winds along with the Gunnison River.

Going-to-the-Sun-Road, Montana

What better drive to take than the route along the first road built by the National Park Service specifically for automobile-using tourists? Following the Continental Divide through Glacier National Park, this strip of pavement winds its way around, and even through, the Rocky Mountains. Offering great views and engaging driving, isn’t it about time to convince your lady to take that educational vacation to a National Park she’s been begging for … so you can drive your Mazda through these sick curves?

The High Road to Taos, New Mexico

Looking for a drive that feels like you’re in a foreign land, but don’t want to worry about shipping your Mazda to Spain? The High Road to Taos, aka State Road 503, needs to be on your list. A 56-mile scenic route through the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, this road features loads of great, twisty driving, but watch your speed as you’ll head through villages along the way. If you want to skip the slowdowns, check out the “Low Road.” State Highway 68 is a quicker route, but it follows the Rio Grande and delivers some great views!

The Sea to Sky Highway, British Columbia

Let’s not forget the asphalt of our neighbors in the Great White North! Picking up west of Vancouver by Horseshoe Bay, the Sea to Sky Highway follows Highway 99 all the way to Pemberton. Formerly a bit dangerous, the road has been improved so you can safely zip through the craggy Canadian coast up into the snow-capped mountains. If you’re feeling more ambitious, you could always opt for Highway 1, aka the Trans-Canada Highway, which takes you all the way to the east coast. But we’ll stick to recommending the easier-to-reach Sea to Sky HIghway for now!

 

This list should get you started on some exhilarating Western drives to add some fresh scenery and fresh curves to your Mazda driving. If you have other great western drives, drop your recommendations in the comments. And if you follow up on these recommendations, tag us with #CorkSport when you post to Instagram!

CorkSport’s Performance Race Industry Show Recap

CorkSport at PRI

In the car game, there are two big shows each year where all the action happens: the Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) and Performance Race Industry (aka PRI). At these events, automotive parts companies flaunt their accomplishments, showing off their latest and greatest mods and parts, while everyone gets a chance to network, catch up, and just generally ogle and chat about gorgeous vehicles. We here at CorkSport love to keep up on what’s hot and new in the automotive industry, so this year we headed to Indianapolis for PRI to see what auto trends are being developed.

First Impressions

CorkSport at PRI

As we first entered the convention center, the stage was set. The picture above features the main PRI banner, which prominently displays some dirt mod cars. That can only mean one thing: PRI would be showcasing a lot of American muscle and, probably, not a lot of imports. Regardless, we braved the show.

The Cars, The Parts, The Highlights

Wandering the aisles of the show, our suspicions were confirmed. PRI had more American muscle than the lineup of cars Vin Diesel will drive in the next “Fast & Furious” movie. But, as we navigated the aisles, we were greeted by a sight for sore eyes — an import you can never go wrong with — a Le Mans-winning P1 car.

Corksport at PRI Mazda

When it comes to performance cars, it doesn’t matter if the car is an import or a domestic, one good thing about them is turbos. Good news from the show is that it looks like Garrett doesn’t have any plans slow down on their production of turbos anytime soon, for themselves or for the Mazdaspeed 3. They had some great tech on display, which is never a bad thing. Feast your eyes on these beauties.

CorkSport at PRI - NP01

Next, we came across a nice surprise in the NASA booth — a paint scheme that any Mazda enthusiast should know. The NP01 is more than just rad-looking, it’s powered by the 2.0 MZR motor and a large selection of other drivetrain parts making it very affordable when it comes to cost to own and cost to race. If you’re in the market for a race vehicle and cannot afford one of the Lola/Multimatic-built Mazda Prototypes that Speedsource is selling, the NP01 is a great alternative.

CorkSport at PRI

Finally, there was one big wow part we have to tell you about. Check out this crazy, billet Duramax Chevy motor.

Corksport at PRI DX600 Billet Duramax

The DX600 Billet Duramax is a supercharged compound turbo setup. Looking for a billet aluminum block for your Chevy truck? We know you Mazda fanatics probably aren’t, but this is really freakin’ sweet piece of hardware regardless. Now, if only we could get someone to make a billet engine for the Mazdaspeed 3. Then life would be really sweet.

Hope you all enjoyed this PRI update as much as we enjoyed checking out cars and parts at the show. As always, at CorkSport we strive to keep you all apprised of the new and interesting car news you crave. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for our latest news.

CorkSport Headlight Leveling Link

It’s fair to say that we all love the look of a lowered car, especially when it’s your car right? However what we don’t love is lowered headlights, but sadly that’s a result of your ride’s new look. There are less desirable ways to fix the new lowered headlight issue and there are correct ways. Here at CorkSport, we wanted to provide you the correct method to get your headlights back in line.

Light Leveling Kit | CorkSport

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CorkSport Mazda Miata LED Lighting Kit

CorkSport is pleased to add the new Mazda ND Miata LED Lighting Kit to our growing list of products designed to enhance the look and performance of the new Mazda MX5 models!

Mazda Lighting Kit | CorkSport

This kit expands CorkSport’s line of LED light kits specifically designed for Mazda and Mazdaspeed model vehicles and has been customized for the Miata. Designed to replace the standard yellowish lights with cool white/blue ambient light, this kit gives your car an enhanced look in the interior of the vehicle and license plate lighting.

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