Evaluating HKS Hipermax SP coilovers on the Mazda ND MX-5


The upper adjusters in the pillow ball mounts are easily accessed when the hood is opened. 
The car with the HKS Hipermax SP coilovers added looks so much better.  The car was lowered 45mm in the front and 40mm in the rear.

Our big question was, were the Hipermax SPs too stiff for the street? We noted before that the MX-5 cup car has a pretty good ride with even stiffer springs, however the race car's all inclusive roll cage improves chassis stiffness a lot which also improves the ride.  

When testing the HKS equipped ND MX-5, we found the car’s ride to be firm but still reasonably comfortable.  The short wheel base and the fact that it’s a convertible make it difficult to truly ride as well as a modern sedan, but the car now rides and handles as it looks, like a proper high performance sports car. The stocks car's softly sprung feeling is long gone with the body roll. 

We would say most older owners who bought the MX-5 to cruise on the weekends with the top down but want a cool looking lower car may still prefer the slightly softer ride from the Hipermax GT model. However, we found that the Hipermax SP is still very comfortable especially on smoother roads.  Large undulations and bumps in the road are well controlled but might be felt to be a little jarring to some fussy and sensitive types who have no business going fast anyway. This is very similar to what we experienced with our S2000 evaluation. 
The Hipermax SP does shine for enthusiast drivers. The steering response after alignment was drastically improved!  Body roll is reduced to the point that we doubt it would need upgraded anti-roll bars but since this is subjective we are sure there are some who would disagree. If stickier weekend warrior DOT race tires were added, then bars would be needed like what was found on the MX-5 cup car.  Although we felt that the HKS set default damping adjustments were good out of the box, adding larger and more grippy tires would require some minor tweaking for best results. 

The main and biggest improvement is from the reduction in body motion control during acceleration and in response to the throttle.  In stock form, the nose of the car would lift up drastically under acceleration to a degree that would make you question if you were in  a sports car!  The Hipermax SP suspension completely fixes this and the car now has a very level body under acceleration which also has a byproduct of less torque loss providing enhanced throttle response.

We were very impressed with the Hipermax SP and would recommend that for most of our readers, this would be the choice to get over the GT model. 



Pure Tuning

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