The stock exhaust has a catalytic converter and dual mufflers. The system
is stainless steel and 2.25" into the rear muffler, with two 2" pipes out
the back. It seems to be a good quality system because I haven't heard of
many problems. However, if you're lookin' for a deeper sound or more flow...
Here kitty, kitty! -- Some people have, um, well, reduced the restriction
of their cat by just hollowing it out, hollowing and putting a straight pipe
inside (sleeved), or even just removing it altogether and welding a pipe
in it's place. THIS IS ILLEGAL IN THE U.S.!! You have a pretty good chance
of getting caught if your car is routinely inspected by the state. If you
need a new cat, try
Ltd. for some good prices. Note that there are two types for the 20V:
one has the O2 sensor mounted in it, and the other doesn't.
Center resonator -- Some report having removed the center resonator with
little or no change to the exhaust noise. I believe this is mostly a cost-saving
measure (buy a pipe instead of a box) but beware that doing this might cause
a loss of power. The resonator is designed to damp acoustic resonances in
the pipe which otherwise cause back pressure at certain RPMs.
Scorpion makes a
cat-back bolt-on kit for the 20V (Pictured at
left). TAP sells it for ~$800, but
Denon (888-468-0688) or
2Bennett may have it for less.
It is a good
performance system, but some find the noise level to be too high. Check out
clips on TAP's web site.
B & B makes a kit called the
TriFlow for around the same price. (Tip shown at right) However, it is only
guaranteed to fit the sedan.
Stebro has a stainless kit that is
a little less expensive. It is not as well constructed, and the performance
increase is probably a little less than the other two, but the noise level
is more civilized. Many have reported fitment problems, especially on later
cars with a rear swaybar.
Another option is to find a competent shop that could fabricate a custom
system. They could probably do it for less money than these big brands. The
problem is finding a shop that will mandrel bend the pipes. Without the mandrel
bending, a larger exhaust will be no better than stock, and may even be worse!
The three rubber hangars on the rear of the car stretch out with age. If
they stretch far enough, the pipe will begin to rub on the rear driveshaft,
and eventually spring a leak. One solution is to buy three chain reinforced
donuts (P/N 171 253 147 G) from Techtonics Tuning (503-843-2700). That's
a VAG P/N, so you might be able to get them at your local dealer. These are
also helpful for adjusting exhaust postion on a lowered car, or with aftermarket
exhaust replacements. (Peter Schultz)
Some have reported problems even with the chain reinforced hangars. Another
option is to use heavy-duty nylon tie-wraps to brace the rubber donut. Just
zip one up around the outside of the donut. The rubber continues to dampen
the motion of the exhaust while the tie-wrap supports the weight. (Bob
D'Amato/Ian Duff/Paul Royal)
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