Clean Air For My MX5

My MX5 did have an upgraded air filter but it was toast. Full of holes and lots of dirt so changing this out for a spanking new one became my next priority. Ideally I would’ve liked to have installed the new air filter when I added the turbo, intercooler etc but we all know that projects requiring restoration as well as custom work tend to dictate the order in which you build. You can have a pretty good plan to start with but these plans tend to change and evolve to suit the car’s needs.

Old air filter

I’ve done a ton of research when it comes to parts for my build because form and function are an essential combination for my project, as is my strict budget. For me styling is equally as important as performance, which is why I’ve spent so long looking for manufacturers and suppliers who offer this blend. It’s not necessarily an area people think about but I certainly do, my approach to custom work is about balancing aesthetics with power and purpose.

Whilst I was trawling the internet I came across the Viper Intake System by Pipercross and as I’m a sucker for pretty things I wanted to see it in my engine bay! The carbon fibre heat shield keeps intake temperatures low – whilst looking stellar – it’s used by winning race teams AND provides over 30% more airflow over a standard paper filter. Thanks to the multi-layered foam technology – rather than paper or cotton – the larger filtration capacity allows Pipercross filters to maintain stronger performance for longer. These filters are low maintenance and excellent quality – it really is worth spending time researching parts to make sure your engine and therefore your car are happy. The Viper is also tested for improved fuel economy, power and torque outputs so it was an absolute no brainer – in you go Pipercross!


For now I’ve utilised the existing standard air intake and fittings; to bring them back to black and give them a bit of a refresh I used some vinyl and rubber cleaner. I also had to get a silicone coupling hose to join the Viper onto the sensor but that’s all. Annoyingly this will all have to change again when I fit the turbo, including the position of the filter – so essentially the job will have to be done twice but I couldn’t keep running that old filter. So for now it’s an easy switch to help my MX5 breathe.


So this was an easy one, that said the whole project is achievable for anyone which is essentially why I’m sharing my build. I want to illustrate the fact that it’s just a case of research, preparation and asking for help when you need it. A few improvements mean my MK1 is already running better and when these upgrades are added to what’s coming up this will be one epic little car.

Special thanks to Pipercross for all your help!

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