The following post comes to us courtesy of Mugen aficionado Jerimiah Styles! Many thanks to him for another contribution of his time and insight!
A beautiful touch to any Mugen equipped vehicle, Mugen Number Plate Bolts (75700-XG8-K0S0) combine high-quality stainless steel construction with decorative Mugen Power engraved washers. The bolts are 3mm hex head, 20mm long, and are designed to be used as a garnish for the license plate frames of your car. However, clever tuners have discovered that they can be used for enigine bay aesthetics and also fit perfectly with the Mugen K-Series Carbon Fiber Ignition Cover (12500-XK2B-K0S0). Anywhere a 3mm bolt can fit, you can decorate it with a Mugen number plate bolt.
A look at the window boxes shows the extremes that these companies are going to replicate these items. The front of the boxes appear to be the same, but are they? The colored flag at the top of the box is mis-proportioned on the fake, with fatter color bands, and the Mugen logo at the bottom of the box is noticeably altered.
A look at the back of the boxes shows that the two products are labeled entirely different. Kanji appear at the top the genuine product and the bottom lists M-TEC contact information. The fake window box shows just a portion of the original, and the description is in Japanese (instead of English).
The Japanese printed instructions inside of the original Mugen number plate bolts is a gray print. The product illustrations are placed on the right of the page.
The instructions inside of the fake box are a much darker, bolder, black print and the product illustrations are placed on the left side of the page. The printed area also takes up less of the page.
A close look at the washer shows the high quality stainless steel and engraved Mugen Power logo. The hex bolt has a slight bezel around it, allowing you to tighten them down without scarring or stripping the finely detailed surface. The bolt itself sits slightly elevated from the washer with clear cut jewelery-like edges.
The fake bolt is much less refined. The logo appears to be printed or painted (not etched) and the bolt sits flush with the washer, unlike the genuine part.
Photo courtesy of Paroykos
Why does it matter?
Replica Mugen parts built with subpar methods result in a far inferior product. In the case of the Mugen number plate bolts, an allen wrench does not fit properly into the bolt. The bolts become damaged and stripped over time, potentially seizing to wherever they have been placed.