Meet the Tuners: Erich Schuller’s 2008 Mazdaspeed3
World’s Most Powerful Mazdaspeed3
640 WHP @ 33 psi on Pump Gas
Erich Schuller, who hails from Maple Valley, Washington, is the guy snickering behind the wheel of this low-profile, highly boosted street demon.
The bulk of the car’s tuning attention was focused on the Mazda’s 2.3-liter MZR DISI engine. Tork Motorsports in Auburn dropped dished Wiseco forged pistons and K1 forged rods in the MZR then added a highly massaged cylinder head. Tork’s John Bushbaum performed a full polish and intricate radius work to increase flow, CNC-ported the vital openings and fitted the head with custom-grind cams.
Big power requires big airflow so Tork’s John Bushbaum started by polishing the head and performing elaborate bowl work around the valve to maximize flow. The turbo system provided the big boost of air. It features a slick equal-length, T304 stainless steel turbo header that positions a Borg Warner Bullseye S366 turbocharger with a .70 A/R turbine housing between the engine and firewall. Other under-hood goodies include a TurboSmart 45mm HyperGate wastegate, Cobb Tuning blow-off valve and a custom air-to-liquid intercooler with three-inch piping. John also fabricated the trick intake manifold and turbo downpipe that leads to a Cobb three-inch exhaust system.
A Cobb Access Port ECU flash provides the tune and Erich runs 33 psi on the road with the ability to turn the wick up five psi on higher octane fuel. John says the Cobb tuning process is very straightforward, “the pros are it’s the only real solution for tuning the direct injected MS3, cons are we don’t have injector control.” John uses the Cobb software to control the MAF values to lean the air/fuel mixture. “I basically program an ‘irregularity’ into the mix to force the map to do what I want it to do from a fueling standpoint.” John says he sometimes feels like a blind man making his way down an alley but he expects the divine savior that is injector control to be available as you read this. John made history when the MS3 pounded out an SAE-corrected 640 whp on the Drift-Office Dynojet, making it the world’s most powerful Mazdaspeed3.
Direct injection is pretty much an untamed beast at his point. And the fact that different automakers employ different operating pressures, totally different injector/fuel pump designs and a variety of different control parameters DI looks to be a tough egg. Some of basic differences between a point injected system and direct injection include operating pressure which is 43 psi to 76 psi in conventional injection but 400 psi at idle and 2,000 psi plus at full boost in a DI system, injector construction and injector sizing; grams/second for DI versus cc/minute for EFI. The big pressures generated in DI are attributed to the pump, which is a piston design that uses a dedicated lobe at the end of the cam to actuate the piston and pressurize the rail. An in-tank feeder pump supplies the main pump. One of the keys to the efficiency and power potential of DI is fuel atomization. John says that the Mazda DI produces a spray pattern that can’t be seen without at strobe light at the system’s 400-psi minimum operating range. He says at 1,000 psi the spray is so fine it cannot be seen with the naked eye.
John installed a water/alcohol injection system to increase the car’s margin of safety. The Snow Performance system features a VC-25 controller that regulates flow with user determined start and stop points via manifold pressure. The system establishes a linear increase or decrease of injector flow between the start/stop settings with the initial pressure ranging from .5 to 8 psi and max pressure ranging from 2 to 25 psi.
To keep pace with the power upgrades Erich boosted the Mazda’s footwork by adding a set of KW Variant 3 coilovers and Cobb anti-sway bars front and rear. The all-important contact patch is provided by 235/45-17 Goodyear F1 tires wrapped around conservative-looking, 17x9 949 Racing wheels.
The future is now for Erich’s MS3. When we last left Erich and John the dynamic duo were making arrangements to acquire some race gas and shoot for 700 whp, which will ensure this sleeper will certainly be able to wake the neighbors.
- Custom gauge pod
- Engine Drivetrain
- 2.0-Liter MRZ four cylinder
- Power 640 WHP, 474 lb-ft at 33 psi on Pump Gas
- Engine Wiseco pistons
- K1 rods
- Snow Performance direct-port methanol injection
- Tork Motorsports CNC head
- HPFPUPGRADE fuel system
- Cobb AccessPro
- South Bend Clutch Prototype clutch with billet flywheel
- Bullseye S366 turbo
- Tork Motorsports tubular big turbo manifold/kit
- Tork Motorsports custom LTAIC
- Cobb Blow-off valve
- Turbosmart wastegate
- Tork Motorsports custom tube intake manifold
- Dodge-sourced Throttlebody
- Cobb cat-back exhaust system
Suspension + Wheels:
- KW Variant 3 coilovers
- Cobb anti-sway bars
- Wheels & Tires 17x9 949 Racing wheels
- 235/45-17 Goodyear F1 tires
- Stock Brakes