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This entry was posted on October 12, 2016.
There is an ancient proverb that says: “Loud Pipes Save Lives”. This is particularly true when your car looks invisible to most truck drivers. I’ve always had Miatas with aftermarket exhausts and never liked them to be ultra loud. In my NA, I was rocking the RS*R Invidia Exhaust (which had a slightly louder tone than stock, but with a much sportier sound). In my NB, I had the RS Factory Stage N-Zero2 Exhaust which was pretty silent until you hit full throttle. Those were some nice “feeling” mods as you could hear the engine as you pushed it.
When I first got my ND, I sometimes had difficulty hearing the engine because it was so quiet. Mazda did an awesome job at making the car SUPER silent. By good job, I mean, you can literally run the car without its muffler and it does not sound *that* bad (try it when you change your exhaust, you’ll see). The stock catalytic converters and mufflers coming from the mid-pipe make the exhaust noise almost impossible to hear (this is also why they include a sound enhancer, otherwise you really can’t hear the engine).
I had the choice of a variety of awesome exhaust setups, but I decided to go with the least expensive and probably most “extreme” exhaust we sell. I went for the Fujimura Gentle Sound Muffler. Ironically, it does not sound gentle at all. It sounds mean and awesome. Don’t worry, there are video clips later in this post.
So, here’s my complete review:
Installation couldn’t be easier. The stock exhaust is held by 2 bolts and 4 exhaust hangers.
Just remove the 2 bolts and then play with the hangers to get the exhaust out. Do this when the exhaust is cold… otherwise you might hurt yourself. I suggest doing this with someone else, as, otherwise the exhaust may fall on your face or on the ground while you’re trying to remove it.
After that, just take 1 of the OEM exhaust hangers and put them on the Fujimura exhaust. The exhaust is so light (3.3KG) that it only needs to have one mounting point.
Voilà, your exhaust is installed!
If it takes you more than half an hour to do this, you probably should not work on cars. It’s that easy to install.
The Fujimura Gentle Sound Exhaust is pretty subtle. It’s a single-tip exhaust that has a slightly angled shape to make it as direct as possible. When the exhaust is not installed, you can basically see right through. The muffler and tip is polished for a neat look.
As with any shiny part that’s just a few inches from the ground, it gets dirty. At some point, if you are as careless as me, the finish becomes more silver than polished. It can be brought back to its original glory, but I didn’t get round to it yet.
Still, could we say that after a while it’s less of a “cop-magnet”?…. Maybe.
There is also a fancier version of this exhaust: the Fujimura Limited Edition Exhaust with a beautiful titanium tip. I didn’t want to go too fancy for once and took the regular one.
This is the important part, isn’t it? The Fujimura Gentle Sound Exhaust is made to give the car a deep and sporty sound. The president of Fujimura Auto tests various muffler setups until he finds the perfect tone. In addition, he created (possibly) the lightest exhaust setup available for the ND Miata.
When you start your car (going from stock exhaust), the first thing that enters everyone’s head is, “Oh my…”. It *sounds* really loud at first. The reason is simple: the stock exhaust is VERY silent. When driving, you’re like, “this is going to be annoying”. But after a while, you really enjoy it. I have to say, you really get used to the super quiet OEM exhaust. When I had both my NB and ND, if I went from my ND to my NB it felt like it was ULTRA loud. However, compared to other sports cars, it was just normal. When I went to Miatas At The Gap and saw tons of NAs, NBs and NCs, I understood that my ND was not even close to loud compared to other muffler setups. Still, everyone (and I mean everyone) loved the sound of the ND with the Fujimura muffler. It does not sound like a cheap racing exhaust; there’s absolutely no raspiness, which I love.
I took quite a long ride with it. I did over 5000 miles of driving through the USA and the exhaust never annoyed me. At full throttle, it has a sporty tone. When going slow, it has a deep drone. When driving on the highway with cruise control, it’s silent. I’m not kidding -- you can’t hear it at all, it’s pretty amazing. From cruise control, when you decelerate or accelerate, then you can hear it. And that’s pretty nice, because as I said, “Loud Pipes Save Lives”. On many occasions during my road trip, I needed to let other cars on the road know I existed, otherwise they would have bumped me. That exhaust gets you noticed when you need it.
I’ve heard other ND muffler setups, but they didn’t impress me much. I like to hear my car when I drive, so I can actually “feel” it. The stock ND really lacks that feature. Now, it just feels like I’m connected to the vehicle.
Alright, enough talk, let’s hear it!
Start + Drive
Coming Back + Down Shifting
Passing Through (Windy… sorry!)
Revving + Slow Launch
A lot of videos, but I still don’t think they show the real awesomeness of the noise. I used my Nikon Camera and it was quite windy. Sometimes I was too close, which altered the sound a bit.
Here are 2 more videos to show you the noise:
During Dyno :
Inside Video (Deal’s Gap) :
Overall, I’m super satisfied with the Fujimura Gentle Sound Muffler. It’s an awesome sounding piece that helped me avoid a few highway incidents. Some people might think it’s too loud, and I have to say that it’s not for everybody. However, everyone who followed me (as well as me following my very own car) enjoyed the beautiful tone of this muffler.