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Hey guys, I'm a complete beginner when it comes to working in cars, but I would really like to get into it. I have a 2011 Mazda 3 iTouring 2.0L with an auto transmission, and I was interested in purchasing and installing the corksport SRI. Is this a good place to start with modding? From the forum posts I've been reading and the videos I've been watching, it seems relatively simple even for a complete beginner to install, and they aren't that expensive.

I also have some questions about corksport's exhaust system. Now I understand that this will make the car much louder, (correct me if I'm wrong), but is it actually that much of a difference that I could be hitting the legal dB limit? I also saw that I have the option of no racepipe, with racepipe, and with racepipe and HFC. From what I've been reading about this, once again correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the no racepipe version just increases the airflow and sound, the with racepipe also increases sound and power, and the with racepipe and HFC is similar to the previous but I'm not sure of the function of the HFC.

Is it reasonable for me as a complete beginner to install these myself? Or would it be a better decision to have someone else install them for me?

My car is also my daily driver so how reasonable would it be for me to have both of these in my car?

Last thing I promise, but I live in Pennsylvania and what kind of effect would this have on my emissions? Would I even have a chance of passing with both of these installed?

I'm sorry for asking so many questions, but all of this is new to me and I can DEFINITELY use some advice :D
 

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Ok... well welcome and we all had to start somewhere. There are many schools of thought so I'm sure for everyone that will agree with me, there is one that will not. But it goes like this....

An SRI\CAI alone is pretty much just sound (Not legal in any CARB states).
An Axle Back alone is pretty much just sound (Most likely legal).

An SRI\CAI + Axle Back will probably net you enough of an HP increase that you could actually feel it (rule of thumb is anything less that 10 HP can't really be felt)

Now.. if instead of the Axle back, you go with a CAT back (which is NOT legal in any CARB state), you might actually get enough of a boost from that alone that it could be felt (although it will be much louder than just an Axle Back). If you combined that with an SRI\CAI, def improvements.

HOWEVER, with all that said and done, the only way to really take advantage of those mods is to get a Tune... without it you are expecting the ECU with stock mapping to adjust enough to take advantage of all that newly free flowing air\exhause and it just can't.

So for a seriously (and really the most realistic expectations) of power, you need an SRI\CAI, AB\CB, and a Tune.... so you are looking at about $1,300 but we are talking serious jump in power. The only thing you can really do after that is turbo charge.


Now with all of that said... I have no idea if your state is a CARB state or what their Smog laws are. In those states, we are limited to an Axle back + Drop in air filter, and possibly a tune (still looking into that latter one). But even with that, a significant amount of power could be had.

Have fun!
 

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Save your money. Intakes and axle back exhaust systems don't really do much. You'll be laying out close to $700 for just the intake and muffler, more than a grand if you get the whole system. That will get you a power increase, around 18hp according to CS, but most of that power is at the top end where you need it least. You don't want to be driving around with the motor running at 5K+ rpm to stay in the power band with that loud exhaust. You might see a 5hp useful gain at lower rpms. For what you get, not a good place to start. Loud does not equal fast. If that car is your daily driver, you are probably going to find that after the newness wears off the loud droning produced by the muffler inside the car at speed is not really such a good thing......
If you want to spend money on the car, start with the important stuff. Better tires, lighter rims, better suspension. A rear sway bar upgrade is usually a good starting point. You'll get a much better return for what you spend and the car will be a lot more fun to drive
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What does a rear sway bar do? And with the suspension, is that something I'd be able to change on my own? I'm guessing not considering I'd need to lift the car to access it. Would it be easier/more cost effective to have someone else install it for me?
 

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And I realize that the intake and exhaust won't net me a huge performance increase, I was mainly just looking for that nice deep sound and better throttle response
 

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Ok... well welcome and we all had to start somewhere. There are many schools of thought so I'm sure for everyone that will agree with me, there is one that will not. But it goes like this....

An SRI\CAI alone is pretty much just sound (Not legal in any CARB states).
An Axle Back alone is pretty much just sound (Most likely legal).

An SRI\CAI + Axle Back will probably net you enough of an HP increase that you could actually feel it (rule of thumb is anything less that 10 HP can't really be felt)

Now.. if instead of the Axle back, you go with a CAT back (which is NOT legal in any CARB state), you might actually get enough of a boost from that alone that it could be felt (although it will be much louder than just an Axle Back). If you combined that with an SRI\CAI, def improvements.

HOWEVER, with all that said and done, the only way to really take advantage of those mods is to get a Tune... without it you are expecting the ECU with stock mapping to adjust enough to take advantage of all that newly free flowing air\exhause and it just can't.

So for a seriously (and really the most realistic expectations) of power, you need an SRI\CAI, AB\CB, and a Tune.... so you are looking at about $1,300 but we are talking serious jump in power. The only thing you can really do after that is turbo charge.


Now with all of that said... I have no idea if your state is a CARB state or what their Smog laws are. In those states, we are limited to an Axle back + Drop in air filter, and possibly a tune (still looking into that latter one). But even with that, a significant amount of power could be had.

Have fun!
^ He pretty much covered it all. You will get some power from the mods but the tune is what will really take advantage of anything we do to modern EFI cars.
 

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What does a rear sway bar do? And with the suspension, is that something I'd be able to change on my own? I'm guessing not considering I'd need to lift the car to access it. Would it be easier/more cost effective to have someone else install it for me?
A larger rear sway bar will make your car handle much better. It will remove a lot of body roll and transfer more grip to the front tires. As the front tires drive the car and turn the car at the same time, more front grip is always good.
You do need to raise the car to work on the suspension, but not really any more so than to do the exhaust.

And I realize that the intake and exhaust won't net me a huge performance increase, I was mainly just looking for that nice deep sound and better throttle response
Yeah, a lot of people do that, but it really is just throwing money away. You won't get a big improvement in throttle response from just a SRI and exhaust and the noise isn't all its cracked up to be. Deeper is ok, but many aftermarket systems are just plain loud and make an awful droning sound that reverberates inside the car at certain engine rpms.
You might want to go with a tune if that is what you are after.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'll definitely look more into that rear sway bar. Regarding the exhaust, I still think I want one, I just need to keep researching which ones are legal in pennsylvania. I understand that the sound may not seem like a big deal, but in my opinion I think it's worth it, and the corksport ones really are not that expensive. Plus I have a nice sound system in my car already so it would drone out most of the annoying noise at low rpms when I'm driving to school or something. Plus it'll sound nice when I'm driving it fast ;)
 

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I'll definitely look more into that rear sway bar. Regarding the exhaust, I still think I want one, I just need to keep researching which ones are legal in pennsylvania. I understand that the sound may not seem like a big deal, but in my opinion I think it's worth it, and the corksport ones really are not that expensive. Plus I have a nice sound system in my car already so it would drone out most of the annoying noise at low rpms when I'm driving to school or something. Plus it'll sound nice when I'm driving it fast ;)

Some people are just really against them, but in the end, as long as a person knows and is honest with themselves, there is nothing wrong with modding your car. So as long as you know it's all about the sound, then go for you ..you won't regret it.

Correction, just noticed you have a 2011... some of this may not apply...

If you want slightly louder than stock you may look into the Racing Beat. Sounds like they are barely noticeable until you get into it at higher RPMs. If you want to step it up a bit more, Corksport is you option. Or you can do like I did and just go custom (but with whatever exhaust exit configuration you want).

I don't want to say it is a fact, but I'd be surprised if you were not be able to replace just the muffler (Axle back) and remain legal. Do you hear any other cars around where you leave that have modified mufflers? If they can do it, Racing Beat or CS would be just fine.
 

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Some people are just really against them, but in the end, as long as a person knows and is honest with themselves, there is nothing wrong with modding your car. So as long as you know it's all about the sound, then go for you ..you won't regret it.

Correction, just noticed you have a 2011... some of this may not apply...

If you want slightly louder than stock you may look into the Racing Beat. Sounds like they are barely noticeable until you get into it at higher RPMs. If you want to step it up a bit more, Corksport is you option. Or you can do like I did and just go custom (but with whatever exhaust exit configuration you want).

I don't want to say it is a fact, but I'd be surprised if you were not be able to replace just the muffler (Axle back) and remain legal. Do you hear any other cars around where you leave that have modified mufflers? If they can do it, Racing Beat or CS would be just fine.
I took a look at the exhaust options from Racing Beat and I don't even think they have one for my specific car, so if I decide to get an exhaust I'm most likely just gonna go with Corksport, same with the SRI. The only thing I'm slightly concerned about is if either of them are legal (sri and exhaust). Lots of the laws here regarding inspections and emissions have changed recently and I believe we are a CARB state now, so I'm guessing when I go for my inspection they'd check the emissions too.

"(1) A vehicle specified under this subchapter shall be equipped with a muffler or other effective noise-suppressing system in good working order and in constant operation. A muffler or exhaust system may not be equipped with a cutout, bypass or similar device and a muffler may not show evidence of external repair.

(2) The exhaust system of a vehicle may not be modified in a manner which will amplify or increase noise emitted by the motor of a vehicle above the maximum level permitted by Chapter 157 (relating to established sound levels)."

I saw this in the PA code and im guessing legally no exhaust modifications are allowed at all, but it's just one of those gray areas where it depends on the place you go to get it inspected. I think for now I'm just gonna buy the SRI, see how I like it and decide if I want anything more. Thanks for all the help guys!
 

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Check your dB levels because chances are you will be good with just a muffler change. The SRI is prob a no go.


How oftern do you get inpected? Some have suggested to me that both are just bolt ons and you can easily swap them out if your inspection is only once every couple years.
 

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Yea I was looking into that too, it should definitely be possible. I get my inspection and emissions every year around July, but the sri and exhaust (only with racepipe) require no cutting at all they're just the bolt on, so I'd just have to switch them out for the inspection. Only thing I'm not sure about is getting my car tuned, like if it would mess up the ECU to switch back for a couple weeks
 
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