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Hi all,
I love the way my CX-3 looks, the tech inside and the easy way it drives. But how it sounds annoys me more and more.
Before I had a VW Golf 1.8 GT and with a few tweaks it sounded like a bad ass out of hell with a nice deep engine sound and thundering deep tones from the exhaust.
But it more seems like the Mazda CX-3 even tweaked still has that thin high pitch whining sound you associate with small Asian cars and no “deep thunder from the basement” if you get my drift.......
What do I have to do to make my 2.0 Skyactive petrol engine sound as a 2.0 engine, an engine with a deep voice and a growing sound when it stands still or is being put to work?
 

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Hi all,
I love the way my CX-3 looks, the tech inside and the easy way it drives. But how it sounds annoys me more and more.
Before I had a VW Golf 1.8 GT and with a few tweaks it sounded like a bad ass out of hell with a nice deep engine sound and thundering deep tones from the exhaust.
But it more seems like the Mazda CX-3 even tweaked still has that thin high pitch whining sound you associate with small Asian cars and no “deep thunder from the basement” if you get my drift.......
What do I have to do to make my 2.0 Skyactive petrol engine sound as a 2.0 engine, an engine with a deep voice and a growing sound when it stands still or is being put to work?
Google CX3:
Remus Exhaust
Corksport Exhaust
HKS Exhaust
Racing Beat Exhaust

Lots of “sound” videos out there.
I think the HKS doesn’t do much; and the Remus has been somewhat of a more popular one albeit pretty pricey. Corksport looks like the more affordable one with a nice sound.
Then again, my opinion is that the only truly sexy engine sound is from a muscled-out ‘76 Firebird (etc..) or Harley where the idle is....barely idling :D

CX3’s were built as a run-around vehicle so there isn’t too much out there for tweaking performance drastically in the engine bay anyway.
Hope that helps.
Can also hit up @NotAPreppie and @SlyCoopers on these forums for more techy stuff
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Google CX3:
Remus Exhaust
Corksport Exhaust
HKS Exhaust
Racing Beat Exhaust

Lots of “sound” videos out there.
I think the HKS doesn’t do much; and the Remus has been somewhat of a more popular one albeit pretty pricey. Corksport looks like the more affordable one with a nice sound.
Then again, my opinion is that the only truly sexy engine sound is from a muscled-out ‘76 Firebird (etc..) or Harley where the idle is....barely idling :D

CX3’s were built as a run-around vehicle so there isn’t too much out there for tweaking performance drastically in the engine bay anyway.
Hope that helps.
Can also hit up @NotAPreppie and @SlyCoopers on these forums for more techy stuff
Hi PandaG,

I know of the back silencer - but a change of that only makes the car scream without that low tone European cars make around the 2.0 liter mark.
What about the rest of the exhaust system? What about a hedder that has bigger size tubes to remove the restrictions the standard exhaust have?
And initially my question - why is the Asian cars always screaming in high pitch tones and never produces low grunt nouse like my old Merc, VW or Audi???
 

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I just going off of some airflow logic and no actual exhaust sources but I think it would be different for every single car. Sizing, bends, length, resonator etc all would play a role in exhaust notes. I would imagine the motor and its compression ratios also are a factor considering jeep (lets focus only on older pre 2005s) had a 4cylinder wrangler which was basically a tractor engine. Horribly inefficient and would scream but lugged along its own weight even if just barely lol. I would assume old euro vehicles which are primarily based on diesel versions(totally speculating) used the same 'loudish' configuration and just changinged the motor to work with gasoline. Even subaru boxer engine has different sounds for 2.0.

My other theory which is more likely is US emissions. Regulations are getting more and more intense and manufacturers have certian deadlines to hit x emissions/mpg/etc in x amount of years so everything now is more quiet and 'less polluting'. That being said I doubt youll ever find a modern 2.0 which sounds like a v6+ because I surely have not and everyday that statement gets reinforced here by the sounds of random old 90s honda civics with 4" exhausts sounding worse than my neighbors dying lawnmotor.

If anything the cx3 here (US based anyway) is a tad louder than other competitor 2.0 vehicles especially at cold starts at 4am in the morning.
 

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Acoustic tuning for exhausts is complicated math. Or trial and error. Or not even bothered with. Certain resonator designs or packing materials can be tuned to knock out specific frequency bands which is why you get distinctly different sounds from different cat-back or axle-back manufacturers.

Few aftermarket exhaust manufacturers put a significant mount of effort into tuning the tone for aesthetics; most just open up the exhaust to make it louder without actually making it sound better.

Part of the issue with the SAG 2.0 L motor is that it makes an awful first impression on cold start. Both my CX-3 and MX-5 sound horrifyingly awful while the secondary air injection pump is running (usually the first 10-30 seconds after a cold start). It sets the mental "tone" for the rest of your interactions. Smart salespeople at dealerships will start the car and bring it around to the customer so that the system won't impact the customer's first impressions.

Other manufacturers have a similar system but it seems more noticeable on our cars.

IMO, two of the best aftermarket exhaust manufacturers in the business as far as effort put into aesthetics is Borla and Remus. I haven't heard an exhaust of theirs that I didn't like.

Borla doesn't make an application for the CX-3 but they do offer one for the SAG 2.0L Mazda 3 and a half-competent exhaust shop could cut up the Mazda3 Borla and fit it to the CX-3 without any difficulty. Heck, I could probably do it and I'm a really crappy welder.
https://www.borla.com/products/mazda_3_axleback_exhaust_stype_part__11918.html

Remus DOES have a fitment for our cars and I recommend you give it a listen. Just remember that YouTube videos are a really awful way of judging sound (microphone and speaker response curves are complete unknowns).
https://www.remusexhauststore.com/product/remus-sport-exhaust-mazda-cx-3-20l-2wd-awd-2015-on

Whatever you do, don't buy an exhaust that just says "stainless steel". If they don't say what grade of stainless, it's usually a 400-series which isn't really. T-304 or T-316 is what you want.
 

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On the bright side we dont have that horrible fake exhaust sim which some cars have implemented to appeal to the 'car crowd'. Internal speakers giving a fake exhaust sound (hearable only in the car itself) based on rpm when you are driving should be a sin..
 

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Sounds of silence

You might as well get used to it - let's face it, the future is electric. So forget about no manuals, there won't even be any exhaust systems in the future. Maybe the fake sound will be the way to go!
 
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