Subaru BRZ Nameless Axleback

Review: Nameless Axelback with 5″ offset mufflers for BRZ/FR-S/GT86 [UPDATE w/ video]

The stock exhaust on the BRZ sounds asthmatic. You can tell Subaru and Toyota wanted the car to be a relatively quiet daily driver but for us enthusiasts want a bit more sound. Subaru and Toyota engineered a sound pipe that connects to the intake tube to pump induction noise into the cabin but sounds a bit artificial at times. Let’s be honest, our cars need a better exhaust to fit its sports car credentials.

The Nameless axleback gives our cars a hint of the famous Subaru boxer rumble.After searching YouTube and the FT86Club forums for  hours, I finally settled on the Nameless axleback with 5″ offset mufflers. What I hear in the YouTube videos was an exhaust that’s deep and throaty. The Nameless axleback also gave our cars a hint of the famous Subaru boxer rumble, even though our cars have equal length headers. What I was looking for was something subtle and just slightly louder than stock.

To avoid the wait of buying one new from Nameless, I sat on the forum’s for sale pages until I found a local seller. The particular axleback I found featured a 2.5″ inlet with 5″ offset mufflers. I picked up the exhaust and installed it, right before my 1,100 mile drive to and from Southern California. After over 3,000 miles with the exhaust, here are my thoughts.

The build quality is very good. The welds are perfect and I have no doubt the exhaust will last the life of the car. The exhaust is constructed from T304L stainless steel, which turns a nice bronze color after a while. Even though I’m the fourth owner of this particular axleback, it’s held up great and it has no leaks or rust.

Subaru BRZ Nameless Axleback rear beach

The only gripe I have about the exhaust’s build quality is that my tips don’t line up. The passenger side tip is actually half an inch longer than the right, which isn’t noticeable until you’re standing by the trunk looking down. From behind, it looks normal. I’m not a perfectionist so this doesn’t really bother me. From what I’ve read on the forums, Nameless has addressed this issue and newly made axlebacks should be perfect. I met another owner with a newer Nameless axleback and his tips were perfectly symmetrical.

So does the Nameless axleback sound anything like it did in the hundreds of YouTube videos I watched? In short, yes. It’s everything I wanted from an exhaust. It sounds great, the four inch tips fill out the exhaust cutouts and it shed eight pounds from the rear of the car.

With the five inch mufflers, the sound is deep and not too loud. When I first installed the exhaust, I was worried that it was too loud. Over the course of a few days, the exhaust mellowed out and didn’t drone like it did the first day. Even though I’m the fourth owner, I guess some break in time is needed for the exhaust to settle. Here’s a video clip I recorded so you can hear it yourself, though it sounds better in person.

Editor’s note: I’m running all stock exhaust except for the Nameless axleback. 

From a cold start, the Nameless axleback is loud. My BRZ barks to life and maintains a loud throaty rumble until the car warms up and the idle drops down to 650 RPM after about a minute. After the car is warmed up, the exhaust is extremely laid back and quiet. It’s not until you stab the throttle that it makes its presence known.

The exhaust pops and crackles just a bit.On the highway at cruising speeds, the exhaust is barely audible over the wind and road noise. But once you get on the throttle, even just a little, the exhaust wakes up and fills the cabin. It doesn’t drone, but it’s definitely not as quiet as the stock exhaust on the highway.

Subaru BRZ Nameless axleback Laguna Seca

The coolest part of the sound can be heard when off compression. When you lift off the gas suddenly, the exhaust pops and crackles just a bit. It’s not going to rival a Jaguar F-Type in terms of pops but it definitely gives the car a bit more character. You’ll notice the pops the most when you’re heel-toe downshifting from third to second. Even if you’re revving the engine without load, you can hear the subtle pops and cracks.

Overall, I love the Nameless axleback exhaust. It’s how the car should have sounded from the factory. It’s well built, looks great and sounds even better. It’s not too loud over stock and the increased noise makes it easier to rev-match downshift and heel-toe downshift.

Highly recommended, if you can stand the wait list.

UPDATE: I’ve had the exhaust for over a year now and still love it. However, both its rolled stainless steel tips have cracked on me. Since I’m the 4th owner of this exhaust, there’s no warranty but you’ll be covered if you’re the first owner. I contacted Nameless to see how much it would cost to fix and was quoted $175-200 plus shipping both ways. That’s quite a bit of money for me so I decided to live with the cracks.

Nameless axleback cracked tips brz frs

I should also mention I’m not the only person that has had their Nameless tips crack. Perhaps this is a problem with earlier batches but it’s something to be aware of.

In the meantime, I’ll be resisting the urge to get the Miltek resonated catback.

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