Exhaust systems consist of several components and each one plays a role in the sound of a car, its fuel efficiency, and overall performance. The exhaust system, for most, should reduce noise. For others, a great exhaust system is all about making as much noise as possible.
The function of all exhaust systems is to process the gases produced by the engine. The car creates toxic gases: carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, nitrogen monoxide. The catalytic converter converts these into carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, and water vapour before they are emitted.
Between the engine and the tail pipe there is also the manifold, a resonator and the muffler. With all of these components there is a lot of variation available for exhaust systems. Here are a few notable examples of systems that add power and even music to the driving experience.
1. The Honda Civic Type R
The first thing you will notice, whether or not you have auto mechanic training, is that this exhaust system has three tail pipes with two different diameters. In 2017, this car set the Nurburgring record for front-wheel drive cars and has just over 300 turbocharged hp.
And that three-pipe exhaust isn’t just for show. The exhaust system has been carefully designed to accommodate quiet highway driving as well as an exciting sports car growl when you step on the gas from a stop. Behind the rear axle, the exhaust is split into three pipes. The two larger ones have large straight flow mufflers and the smaller one in the middle is a resonator. At a constant high speed the resonator stalls airflow and creates a backpressure. That sends the exhaust through the larger mufflers and reduces noise without losing efficiency.
2. The Heartthrob of Any Auto Mechanic Course
The Heartthrob exhaust system is a highly customizable set of components, which should be fun for anyone in an auto mechanic course to play around with. From the Deep Tone design to a Cat-Back there is a lot of choice, such as the diameters of the piping and the material of the tubing (available in T409 steel or aluminized). Similar to the other components, you can choose your muffler style, or choose not to have a muffler at all (so long as that’s legal where you live, of course!).
The Cat-Back Heartthrob is meant for pick-up trucks and the tubing is mandrel bent, which means that the exhaust flow is extra smooth and efficient. When a dynamometer, or dyno, test was done it showed that there was a 7.5 hp increase for the rear wheels of a Chevy GMX 6.2 litre and more for other vehicles. The biggest gain was for the F150 with an increase of 38 hp.
3. The Music of the Lexus LFA
Here we have another three pipe exhaust, but it’s in the shape of an upside-down pyramid this time. What really makes the Lexus LFA stand out, however, is its incredible sound. Appropriately enough, it was designed in collaboration with the musical instruments division of Yamaha. Have a listen here:
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