Because we love the FD RX-7, we are now offering the two most popular V-mounted intercooler kits in Japan! This one from HKS is one of the biggest, baddest intercoolers you can get that is bolt-on, and aimed at high horsepower rotary powered cars!
What is a V-Mount?
Quite simple, there are a few terms people use regarding intercooler setups.
One is “SMIC“, or in FD speak, means stock mounted intercooler, or a stock location mounted intercooler. It’s exactly what it sounds like. The tiny, inefficient, heat soaked prone Mazda unit is upgraded with either a similar sized, but thicker, intercooler core that is typically made of aluminum or a much larger intercooler that reworks the air ducting work and normally requires a different air cleaner/intake/turbo inlet duct.
Pros: least expensive option, installation is typically straight forward if you’re remotely mechanically inclined, great for a bump in power on stock twin turbos, very low key and not in your face, typically does not require a tune (although always recommended)
Cons: limits higher horsepower, for some SMIC kits, it reuses the OEM rubber hoses, which limit airflow and can crack/break which causes boost leaks, and blowing off couplers/pipes.
A “FMIC” system means front mounted intercooler, or basically where the location of the intercooler moves from inside of the hot engine bay to the best place possible for cooler air, the front opening of the bumper. A FMIC is very popular for most every turbocharged car as the charge air gets as cold as possible with as much real estate as possible resulting in lower air temps and easier horsepower.
Pros: Heat soak is less likely as it is not in engine bay, typically most FMICs are MUCH larger than OEM which allows for better and cooler charge air, allows for higher horsepower, looks good with most front bumpers, cleans up engine bay by removing a lot of plastics and rubber hoses.
Cons: Although charge air is cooler, intercooler is now placed in FRONT of radiator, resulting in less airflow to radiator and subject to hotter water temps, same for Air conditioner condenser, most FMIC kits require cutting of certain parts of car, requires much more work for installation, more expensive than SMIC, typically requires a tune as boost pressure increases.
“TMIC” refers to top mounted intercooler, or when the location of the intercooler rests on top of the engine, which does not exist on the FD RX-7, but does on the FC RX-7.
A “VMIC“, aka, “V-Mount” system is most commonly used on FD RX-7’s compared to other cars. The “V” refers to the orientation of both the radiator and intercooler from a side view. Whereas the the FMIC has both the radiator and intercooler standing upright, one after the other like dominoes, the VMIC allows outside air to reach both the intercooler (which is usually on the top side of the ‘V’) and radiator at the same time, not prioritizing one over the other. This is typically the most ideal setup for most RX-7’s.
Pros: 100% of incoming air is spread out between the intercooler and radiator evenly for maximum cooling efficiency, boost response is typically better because hard pipes leading to intercooler are shorter, cleans up engine bay by removing a lot of the OEM rubber hoses and plastics, allows for higher horsepower over stock.
Cons: By far the most expensive option, installation takes much longer, electric fans hang very low on underside of the car due to radiator orientation, requires either a smaller battery to be used, or relocated to the rear of the car altogether, aftermarket intake/air cleaner/turbo inlet ducts required.
The HKS system is a much desired V-mount system, quite simply due to it’s enormous R-Type HKS intercooler core. The oversized intercooler is perfect for single turbo setups, but still works great for stock twin turbos, although works best for large turbochargers with external wastegates. “Rated” for up to 500HP according to HKS, but we have seen these applied on FD RX-7’s running over 700whp easily. This particular core has specific, FD designed end tanks to have maximum air flow. Once the hood/bonnet is lifted, all eyes are on this giant core as it makes quite the statement.
The HKS kit is not just an intercooler, it is a very complete kit. It will include most everything you such as the compression tube (from the OEM throttle body), intercooler piping, all brackets, relocation mounts and hardware including a battery tray that is mounted directly behind the intercooler in the engine bay (this option requires a smaller battery type), air conditioning relocation lines, air guides and panels, and other various bits.
It is important to note that this kit does NOT include a smaller battery, battery relocation kit (to move to rear of car), a radiator (you may use your stock one, but most use upgraded all aluminum performance ones), or the HKS Racing Suction (RS) intakes.
There are two versions of this kit, and the only difference is that one is made to be used on stock twins by including a pipe that connects the hot side of the intercooler to the OEM Y-Pipe that loops around the stock air pump (emissions), and the other does not include that pipe. If you are using one of the HKS turbocharger kits for the FD such as the TO4S or TO4Z, you may use the piping that comes in that kit! Otherwise, if you are using a different turbocharger, you must make your own pipe to connect from the turbo to the intercooler.
These are made to order with an average lead time of 6 weeks!