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I'm seriously considering purchasing the CZ Stage 1 mod. Who wouldn't?? The promise of 20-30 hp with a painfully simple "plug-in" mod is so tempting it's almost difficult to accept as reality. Typically, things that appear too good to be true actually are just that.
Points of skepticism:
1) I'm in VA where there are fairly strict emissions laws that must be updated annually (or maybe it's every 2 years. Either way). Will the CZ mod cause me trouble passing emissions? If so, I could simply disable it, right?
2) This mod causes unknown amount of additional stress/wear/damage to the cat, correct?
3) This mod will likely void your warranty if your dealer found it, yes?
4) CZ Stage 1 has become less effective due to the recent string of Mazda ECU flashes which actually leaned out the mixture...a strategy used by the CZ mod to gain performance? Please correct me if I'm wrong, I'm working off only forum post information here...
5) There is a current indefinite wait for those that purchase the mod due to low staffing/resources that cause customers to wait for 2-6 months for the product.
All this information is a composite of my impressions from the dozens of various CZ threads I've perused. If my information is inaccurate, please don't hesitate to correct me.
In the end, I'm not trying to bash the mod. I want to convince myself that the major risk items are mitigated before I jump into the $600+ purchase.
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1. Yes, you can turn it off and it is undetectable in the off position.
2. Yes thats true. 120,000 miles is the original estimate for the cat which will drop down to 90,000 miles (estimate) after CZ1.
3. From what I know it will void your warrenty for the car not just the PCM module ie. Change the PCM and everything else on your car is now voided.
4. I believe that this is not true. From what I have heard there has been extensive testing for the "L" flash of CZ1 and gains are even better than before. CZ1 with "K" flash is less effective then CZ1 with "L" or "M" flash.
1) Undetectable unless you're at a dealership where someone knows what the stock configuration looks like and spots your piggyback, right? You'd simply have to remove it before returning to the dealer.
2) only a 30% decrease? I'm impressed...
3) Are you sure about that? I'd heard it was required by law that the dealership/warranty provider PROVE that your modification caused the problem before the warranty is voided for that repair...but I could be wrong. Even so, you could still just remove it before dealer service, correct?
4) Interesting. I'm not sure which I have. I think it might be J.
5) 2-6 months is a long time.....Summer would be over....
We are currently delivering units ordered in Mid January. We expect to complete the current orders in about 50 working days, if current production rates continue. We got a lot of orders in the beginning, and it has taken some time to figure out how to build them reliably and fairly quickly. They are a lot of work! Each one takes me about 2-3 hours, and that's with help (different people/companies doing chassis prep., cable prep. etc). The other assemblers have similar experiences.
As for emissions, you would probably pass with the unit operating. If you are concerned, just switch it off. That's what we put the switch there for.
Cat life - if anyone here thinks cat life will be long when stock you see carbon muck dripping from the tailpipe, please raise their hands. Maurice has carefully adjusted the maps to ensure the cat. operates at appropriate temps. Stage 2, that's another matter. That's why Stage 2 requires the high flow cat and resonator.
Effectiveness - We haven't dyno'd the current map so I can't comment on exact changes. I can warn you that currently power ouput is so smooth many will think Stage 1 does nothing - until they measure their accelleration rate - see the video in the Mazdaspeed/Aftermarket performance section. Maurice sees better 1/4 mile times than before, but weather changes etc. may affect the accuracy of that.
I will say, with the caveat that I'm actually building these things and certainly have a stake in their success, if I had an RX-8, I would put one of these units in it from day one on the road. I think it will increase engine/exhaust system life.
I have an Apex'i PFC in my RX-7, and it made that car what it should have been from day one! Seeing what the Stage 1 box does to Maurice's car reminds me of that!
Oh, as to "expensive", the Apex'i PFC costs $1200 from the RX-7 Store (one of the least expensive suppliers). If you add in the Stage 3 display to the Stage 1 box, you have essentially the same thing for just a little less $$$. I'd say it's worth every penny, especially compared to things that really do nothing, like a Mazdaspeed front ($1200 or so), a wing ($500 or so), etc.
Last edited by RX-8 friend; 04-15-2004 at 08:19 PM.
Originally posted by RX-8 friend We are currently delivering units ordered in Mid January. We expect to complete the current orders in about 50 working days, if current production rates continue.
Thank goodness I ordered early and have had mine for a while now -- thinking of waiting another 2 months would drive me nuts
Maurice runs another business -- so he should know -- communication is the key to customer satsifaction. The one thing (other than delivery time) that I am dissapointed about this CZ is the communication. A lot of people are interested -- CZ Jr. or someone should be giving an "official" update on events every week or two. I think it would make a lot of people still looking at 30 to 60 days for delivery much happier knowing what is going on. Would also make those of us waiting for midpipes, programming cables, etc. much happier
[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]RX-8GT loaded Titanium w/ black leather
Mods: MazdaSpeed Body Kit, GReddy turbo, IntX, SR fly and clutch, Borla, JIC FLT-A2 Coilovers, SpeedStar D5R's with Azenis RT-615's, R-Magic Eyelines, Grounding Cables, Huper-Optik Ceramic Tint, Clear Sides, AdvancedOptik Yellow Ion fogs & Xenons, Strakes, Painted Calipers, Rotor Stem Caps.
Hey, about the warranty--there is nothing you can do to your car to make your warranty "void". If you make a modification to something, and that part breaks, it comes down to how drastic your mod was and how cool/kowledgable/understanding the dealer is. But if you plug in a piggyback unit that does nothing but modify A/F and spark--within the stock ECU's allowed range--and your shocks wear out or your brakes fail or your body rusts out, you're still covered under warranty.
Now if you have the stage 2 package, and fill up with bad gas, and blow an apex seal under detonation, you may be in for an uphill battle with your dealer. However, since the thing is a plug-in, plug-out proposition, the dealer will never catch you running the mod unless you LET them.
"Give a man fire, he'll be warm for a night. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
Last edited by policyvote; 04-15-2004 at 10:10 PM.