MUGEN  – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

MUGEN – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

(car tires screeching) – [James Pumphrey] What
are you supposed to do with your life when your
dad is Soichiro Honda? Yeah, that’s Soichiro Honda,
founder of Honda Motor Company. Do you hang ten on the
coattails of your hugely successful daddy or do
you go off and make a name for yourself? Well if you’re Hirotoshi Honda,
you go start one of the most successful engine building,
custom parts making, works motorcycle creating
companies of all time. This is everything you need
to know to get up to speed on not Meugan, not Megan, not Morgan… Mugan! (electronic music) – Big ol’ thanks to Honey for sponsoring this week’s episode of Up To Speed. When I play video games,
I use cheat codes to win because I can’t stand losing to Nolan. Honey is like the cheat
code for online shopping. So Honey will automatically
find you a coupon code, sale, or discount on over
20,000 sites, like Amazon, eBay, or Auto Parts Warehouse. Check out this sweet deal I
got on a PS4 so I don’t have to play Nolan on X-Box anymore. It’s free and super easy to install. Just head over to and download it for your brah brah. Now, back to the story. The story of Mugan can begin
with the story of Honda. In 1948, Soichiro Honda
formed the Honda Motor Company and started producing
motorcycles in a small, 170-square foot shack. Some might’ve thought that
was a bad idea, given the motorcycle game at the
time was highly saturated in the Far East, but his newly
formed company was his baby and he wasn’t gonna abandon it. His bikes soon gained
popularity for their good looks, reliability, and ease of use,
and soon Honda would go on to become the world’s largest
motorcycle manufacturer. By 1964 was already full
swing in the automobile game. During that time, Soichiro
was also shaping another baby. An actual human one. His one and only son, Hirotoshi Honda. Like his father, young
Hirotoshi acquired a passion for cars, motorcycles, and
races but he was never forced to follow in his father’s
footsteps, a place in the Honda empire wasn’t
gonna be given to him either. Soichiro saw how the sons
of other successful men could easily become failures
in their family businesses and he didn’t want that to
happen to his only child. I wish that my father,
a certain very famous British car host wouldn’t have
forced me to be a car host. A young and rebellious
Hirotoshi didn’t wanna join the family business. He wanted to travel the world,
race motorcycles, and cars, and be chill. Mahalo, baby. But you can only “mahalo,
baby” for so long. Been there Bro-toshi. Hirotoshi was back in
Japan finishing up college and working in his
dad’s workshop, building a Honda S800 race car. (engine roars) The kinda stuff you do in
your off time at college. He had a passion for
tuning the engines made in the factories bearing his
last name and in 1973, Hirotoshi formed Mugen
Company Limited of Japan. Mugen in Japanese means
“unlimited” and the company was also referred to as Mugen Power or Unlimited Power! The Mugen team set out to
develop the best race car engines coming out of Japan. Hirotoshi hired a former Honda R&D and racing service mechanic Masao Kimura to be his chief designer and engineer. During his time with Honda,
Masao build over 15 different race cars and motorcycles
and had over 50 race wins to his credit. Not a bad guy to have you
help out when starting your first engine tuning
company, okay basically, he was the perfect guy for the job. (laughs) And tune engines they did. The very first race engine
they developed was the MF318, Honda’s 1169cc 4-banger. The Mugen team took the Dasa
68-horsepower EB1 and bumped it up to a blistering
133-horsepowers, the MF318 had a dry sump lubrication system,
dual carbs, and was bored out to a maximum 1300cc’s which was allowed in Formula FJ1300 racing, hence, the name. (upbeat tune) I should go back and
correct myself a little. I said they tuned engines,
that’s a bit misleading. Every single part of the
stock EB1 was either modified or completely remade in-house by Mugen. To call them simply a
tuner would be unfair and disrespectful, my apologies. In December 1973, Mugen
entered a car with the MF318 into the entry-level Formula FJ1300 Series and won their first race. They would go on to use
that same motor end car for the next five years. It was that good. Their success in the FJ Series
did a few things for Mugen. It got daddy Honda
interested in the company. The backbone of the Mugen
race cars were Honda’s motors and at the time, the
Honda factory team was on a racing hiatus. That means a break. They saw the Mugen brand as a
way to get back into the game. Mugen continued to work on
Civic engines but in 1975 they saw a market for other
race parts and began selling their first body kits. You want your Civic to look
like the Mugen one on track? No problem because you could
order a custom, Japanese-made body kit and spice up your
first-gen Civic in a jiff. (engine roars) This was unheard of at the time. While continuing to work
on the MF318 and race in the FJ1300 Series, Hirotoshi
had enough capital coming in to expand his efforts into
other passions of his. Motorcross, yeah! Mugen went to work on their
own custom 2-stroke dirt bike, the ME125 and the ME250. Based on the CR250 Elsinore, the ME250 was by today’s standards an
all-works machine with a modified frame engine
and suspension components. In September 1976 Mugen entered
their all-works ME250 bike in the final race of the all
Japan motocross nationals, the Japanese Grand Prix, and they won. And when your 2-year old
company that goes out and wins a major national competition
in its first year of racing against the like of Yamaha,
Suzuki, and your daddy’s company Honda, people start to
take a notice, okay? People are like “whaaat?” Mugen was like that hot
girl in every 90’s movie that walks into a party
and everything gets all slow-motiony, Suzuki’s all like, “Dang who is that?” And Yamaha’s like, “Wow. Wow wow wow wow.” And Honda’s like, “Chill
out guys, that’s my son.” But the ME250 was expensive
compared to its CR250 brother. So a year later doing
what Mugen does best, they began selling engine power up kits. Mo’ power baby! The kit included a new
cylinder head, expansion pipe, piston, rings, gaskets,
and clutch components. Between the motocross
bikes and the body kits and the race engines, Mugen
was rolling in kabash. And in 1979 they expanded and opened up their own factory in Japan. But, like my greedy brother
Lars, Mugen had its hands in multiple cookie jars. By 1980 Hirotoshi had his own
motocross team and was looking to expand into the American market. They signed up-and-coming
racer Johnny O’Mara to pilot an ME125RZ in the States. Johnny wearing all-white
gear, aboard his all-white Mugen bike, looked like frikin
Prince and went on to win the U.S. Grand Prix of the
World GP Motocross Series that year. (engine revving) It was huge for the program
and cemented the Mugen brand in the States as the
motocross bike to have. And what was even cooler,
you could buy the same bike that Johnny was riding. This was unheard of, even
today there’s no way that you can just go down to the
dealership and get an all-works, factory racing motorcycle it
just doesn’t “works” like that. Okay enough motorcycle stuff. You’re here for cars so
let’s get back to Civics. (engine roaring) Just because the motocross
program was getting a lot of attention, Mugen didn’t
want to stray away from the love of their humble Civic. They were big in the Civic One Make race. Because the cost to get a
Civic race-worthy was low, it was a great way to get people racing. And Mugen was selling
racing kits that transformed your showroom floor Civic into a Suzuka Circuit track machine. Just watch and listen to
this clip of the first Civic One Make race. (engines roaring) (indistinct Japanese commentary) It sounds like a bunch of bees
making out with each other. By 1984 Mugen was full
bore into selling parts like body kits, wheels, suspension. This was also the first
year Huahugit Mugen Parts in the U.S.A. You can walk into your
local Honda dealership and order custom Mugen parts
sent directly from Japan, which is pretty, pretty frickin cool. By 1985, 10 years before Post
Malone was born, Mugen was building motors for the CRX to compete in the SCCA GT4 Class. Mugen took the 1.5-liter
EW motors and got it from a stock 76-horsepower to a super ripped, testosterone-fueled 165 buff-ass horses. (engine revving) The car dominated the
class and got Americans all hot and bothered. People wanted more of
that Mugen race stuff. But dominating the FJ1300,
an SCCA, a GT4, and Civic One Make races gets
boring so they expanded into Formula car racing. The all Japan Formula
3000 Championship allowed for V8 engines. So Mugen went off and built a
V8 engine and they called it the MF308. By the way, if you’ve been
wondering what “MF” means, I don’t know, leave a
comment below if you do know. I’m gonna guess it stands
for Morgan Freeman. So the Morgan Freeman 308
is a 3-liter, 32-valve, 500-horsepower monster, revving up to 10,500 RPM. (engine roaring) And it was used in the series until 2005. Quick math, that’s 17 years baby boy! A motor used in a racing
series for 17 years is insane. That’s how good it was. Alright, we get it, Mugen
you’re good at making motors. What could you possibly do next? – Uh, I think I know. – Okay, well, what? – Formula Ooh? – Yeah, you know this story,
you helped write the episode. – In 1991 Mugen build
their first F1 race motor, the Morgan Freeman 351-8,
a 3.5-liter, 40-valve, V10 that put out over 700-horsepower. (engine roaring) – Mm! – At the end of 1992, Honda
had pulled out of Formula One but Mugen continued to supply
various race teams up until the year 2000. I might add that during
this time, Mugen was still racing Civics in the JTC3
Class, not against skylines. And they were winning races. The 96 and 97 championships. (engine roars) While taking what they
learned on the racetrack and supplying those custom
made parts for the masses, i.e. you and me boys and girls. From exhaust to wheels to
aerokits, the Mugen catalog was deep. – Aye uh boss we’re about to
go home you need anything else? – Start working on some concept cars. Here’s some ideas I just
drew on this cocktail napkin. Bye! – Aw man, we were almost out
I shouldn’t have asked him if he needed anything
else does stuff like this. – I don’t know you wanna order pizza. – Yeah but I’m using
the company card, heh. – You may be familiar with
some of the concept cars Mugan made over the years,
like the 1992 Mugen NSX. An all carbon composite
version of the production NSX. They got rid of the pop-up
headlights, which was a bad move. (upbeat music) – The Mugen NSX concept
really paved the way for them to start making more Mugen concept cars. And they used their concept
cars to further drive sales of their custom parts. The model they created was beautiful. Take the cars you already modify for Honda in the racing game,
further develop them with your custom parts, take those
parts and create concept cars that will never be
released, and have people banging on your doors frickin
begging you to sell them your spoilers, your wheels,
your crankshafts, and anything else that made your common
Honda look and perform like a Mugen. They created so much hype
with their concept cars, they eventually started selling
limited production number Mugen badge cars from the factory. Like this one, the 2007 Honda
Civic Mugen RR, a Civic Type-R at its core with all the
special Mugen engineering bits added on. Mugen cranked out 15 more horsepower from the already solid
225-horsepower Civic Type-R. They shed 22 pounds by way
of carbon composite bumper and grilles. Mugen made 300 of these
cars, only available in Japan of course and for
a price of nearly $50,000 for a Civic. (engine roars) You think that’s expensive? Well the car sold out in 10
minutes and that is what makes Mugen, Mugen. (tires screeching) Thanks for watching Up To Speed. I mean it from the
bottom of my heart guys. If you didn’t watch this
I would just be a weirdo yelling about cars to my friends. Also what’s your favorite Mugen car? Let me know in the comments below. I love you. Well so anyone can drive it. The shifter can easily be moved
from this side of the seat to that side depending on
which one you’re used to. That’s just considerate. The center drive Civic
is currently driven by Formula drift driver slash
friend of Donut, Dai Yoshihara. Sup dog. – [Dai] James, stop telling
people we are friends.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. Not a single word about mugen mf204 engine ? B20A F3 engine.
    From what I know, MF mean Mugen Formula.
    MF308 = 3.0 V8
    MF204 = 2.0 L4

  2. I hate the pop up head lights song. I was riding my bike and passed a miata and then for the 15 minute ride home all i could hear in my head was "Pop up up and down headlights"

    not serious

  3. People are already watching your videos, thanking us doesn't do anything nobody has not watched the next video because the host didn't thank them, we are already watching the video, although I'm sure it's subconsciously appreciated it takes away from the goofiness that your videos portray

  4. I appreciated your effort to say Mugen correctly….

    Until you stumbled horribly at Masao. It should be MUH-SAO as in Sao Paulo

  5. I realise this is near imposible butttttttttt. Could you guys try get hold of an MC8 MR2 and do a bumper to bumper??? Pleaseèeeeeeeeee love u long time 😀

  6. King Motorsports here in Wisconsin was the sole North American distributer of Mugen parts when I first visited their shop in 1998. In the parking lot was an Acura NSX with California plates. Yes California guys with NSX's drove their cars to Wisconsin to have them worked on by the best Honda mechanics outside of Japan. King Motorsports build my '01 spec B18C5 w/ Mugen Gymkahna spec manifold in 2004.

  7. I was hoping they brought up the financial scandal that hitoshi honda was caught up in which allowed employees to buy enough shares of mugen after they formed m-tec

  8. True fact the first f1 mugen win was 1999 by the underrated record breaker and extremely needed a world championship hienz Harald frentzen for Jordan-mugen Honda and finished 3rd within the 1999 championship
    (If fact correctors day that he forget the circuit in this edited part the circuit was magny cours)

  9. Donut is James pumphrey, you can't have anyone better in storey telling, he is a very good story teller with all his mimic, and also the editing is something that millennial generation like me is crazy for it

  10. Love the pop up and down headlights,gets me every time. Cheers from Aotearoa NZ.

    Edit: OK so I was just recommended the Pop up Up and Down headlights official song!!! What a great way to finish my day. Thank you Donut media.

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