James Barone Racing Rear Motor Mount: 25,000 Mile Update

I can’t believe it’s already been almost three years. I’ve now driven a total of 25,000 miles on the James Barone Racing rear motor mount, so I thought this was a good time for an update.

** You can view the original install and review post here. **

I’m still happy with the mount, but there has definitely been a degradation in the mount’s firmness. Minor wheelhop has returned, and front end traction,  especially under acceleration, has decreased. In addition, shifting is less precise. A positive effect of the mount’s reduced stiffness has been a reduction of NVH (noise, vibration, harshness) inside the cabin.

I would still highly recommend this mount to anyone interested in improving the firmness of their Mazdaspeed 3’s drive line and preciseness of the shifter. Even with firmness degradation over time, the James Barone Racing rear motor mount still performs far better than the stock unit!

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James Barone Racing Rear Sway Bar Install

The install of the James Barone Racing rear sway bar for the Gen2 Mazdaspeed3 is straightforward and shouldn’t take more than 20-30 minutes.

Before you begin the install make sure the vehicle is securely supported!

1. Remove the two 17mm nuts connecting the control links to the stock rear sway bar (44-60n*m, 57-75lb*ft). There is one nut on each side of the vehicle. If the threading on the control link turns with the nut you will need a 5mm Allen Key to secure it while you loosen the nut.

Mazdaspeed3 Stock Rear Sway Bar Control Link Removal

2. Remove the four 14mm bolts from the two brackets holding the stock sway bar to the chassis (68n*m, 50lb*ft).

Mazdaspeed3 Stock Rear Sway Bar Removal Brackets

3. Remove the stock rear sway bar, including the brackets and bushings, from the vehicle.

Here’s the stock Mazdaspeed3 rear sway bar compared to the piece from James Barone Racing:

James Barone Racing Compared to Stock Mazdaspeed3 Rear Sway Bar

4. Use the supplied grease and apply it liberally to the inside of the supplied bushings. Assemble the new sway bar with the supplied bushings and brackets.

Apply Lube to Bushing

5. Begin to install the new rear sway bar putting the control links in the desired hole on the sway bar. The hole closest to the front of the vehicle is the stiffest setting. The hole closest to the rear of the vehicle is the softest.

James Barone Racing Rear Sway Bar Set Stiffness

6. Put a drop of loctite on each of the four 14mm bolts and install them into the brackets holding the sway bar to the chassis. LEAVE THEM LOOSE FOR NOW! YOU WILL COME BACK AND TIGHTEN THEM LATER!

James Barone Racing Rear Sway Bar Bracket Install

7. Center the sway bar in the brackets by sliding in left or right and ensure the gap between the control arms and the outside edge of the bushings is equal on both sides. (Picture after instruction #10)

8. Now go back and tighten the four bolts connecting the sway bar to the chassis that you had previously left loose (68n*m, 50lb*ft). (Picture after instruction #10)

9. Apply three drops of loctite to each of the control links, apply one lock washer on each control link, then put the 17mm nut back on each control link (44-60n*m, 57-75lb*ft). Again, you may need a 5mm Allen Key to properly torque these.

James Barone Racing Rear Sway Bar Control Link Install

10. Install both supplied locating collars on the new sway bar, on the inside of each bushing. Slide each collar closer to the bushing until there is about the thickness of a piece of paper between the collar and the bushing. Once they are both in the correct place us a 3/16 Allen Key to tighten them evenly.

James Barone Racing Locating Collars Install

That’s it, you’re all done! Enjoy your new sway bar!

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