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UK. firm Rocketeer has not only pulled off a wild Mazda Miata engine swap but is making it easy for other drivers to do the same. Rather than just slapping a turbocharger on the stock inline-four in the Miata, Rocketeer swapped in what it calls an MXV6 which is based on the Jaguar 3.0-liter AJ30 V-6. This is from the Ford-era of Jaguar and it was available in the Jaguar X-Type, S-Type, XF, and the Lincoln LS. In stock form, it made between 231-240 horsepower and 209-221 pound-feet of torque depending on the application.
It seems like a weird candidate for an engine swap. It’s little more than a specialized version of the Ford Duratec 30 which powered humble people, movers like the Ford Taurus sedan, Escape SUV, and Freestyle minivan. Why would anyone want a glorified minivan engine in a Miata?
Because the AJ30 is actually a pretty good naturally aspirated V-6 that’s native to rear-wheel drive. Its specs aren’t mind-blowing, but they’re a big improvement to a stock Miata engine. Also, it comes with Ford reliability. The idea isn’t to make your Miata the fastest one at the track, it’s to give it a modest, yet significant boost in power without the headaches of aftermarket forced induction.
There are a few different kits available for purchase. You can get the complete conversion kit which comes with components like a front subframe, mounting brackets for everything, a full exhaust system including headers, carbon fiber intake manifolds, belts, hoses, a clutch, a bespoke ECU, and more. What it doesn’t come with, however, is the engine itself. You need to source your own Miata and AJ30 engine. This kit modifies your engine and gives you what you need to swap it into your NA or NB Miata. This kit costs $7,995. You can get it installed for “around $2,000.”
A more budget-friendly option is the Expert Conversion Kit which gives you everything you need for just the engine swap. It comes with the subframe, mounting hardware, etc. It doesn’t come with the other bits that upgrade the engine itself. This kit will set you back $2,195 and still requires you to source your own car and engine.
Finally, if you want the shop to do all the work, you can get a complete turn-key car. Rocketworks Sports Cars in Eugene, Oregon will source a Miata, an AJ30 engine, and do all of the work for you. It can restore and modify the car as much or as little as you’d like. The cost of a turn-key V-6 Miata starts at “around $20,000” which seems like a lot for an old Miata, but not too bad for what you’re getting.
You can get an in-depth tour of a Rocketeer Miata in the video below. You may notice the video is about a year old, but the car in the video is a prototype model and the swap kit in question just became available in the U.S. through Rocketworks Sports Cars in Eugene, Oregon.
Don’t think of it as the end-all, be-all of Miata swaps. Think of it as the V-6 Miata that Mazda never built.