Ok, throw away your K&N filters, your microtuners, and your store bought "high on advertising but mysteriously missing dyno curves" commercial exhaust systems, and listen up.
Some of you have been wondering what it was that I have been working on this past week so secretively. How about up to 40 ft lb more AT THE REAR WHEELS and a sound that absolutely transforms the SSR?
The SSR has spent a few quality days at MTI Racing, where Reese and the gang have been demonstrating to me what skilled and EXPERIENCED people wearing big grins can do with even a pedestrian powerplant to use as a basis.
First, they installed the Dynatch Supermaxx headers with hi-flow cats. Then, they tore off the remaining pieces of stock exhaust, and replaced it all with an all stainless, BEAUTIFUL (artful, actually), custom designed and built dual exhaust system with the most exquisitely executed installation I have ever had the pleasure to own, and a carefully designed large diameter "join" behind the cats and ahead of the mufflers to act as our crossover.
Then they laughed at both my stock filter AND the K&N filter that they keep around the shop as an example of what NOT to do, and showed me and then installed a REAL performance filter (that by itself add from 3 to 8 hp, depending on where you are in the rpm band - I saw it with my own eyes fresh off the dyno).
The result BEFORE any VCM tuning (because Reese simply ran out of time because of the open house he had for the Corvette guys today) is "only" a gain of 16 to 26 hp at peak, but horsepower gains of up to 33, not as "blips", but as sustained differences over 500 rpm.
The torque gains were a MINIMUM of 19 ft lb, and sustained differences of up to 36 ft lb. The PEAK torque gain was 40 ft lb.
The largest power and torque gains were EXACTLY where I would want them to be: in the 3800 to 5200 rpm range, where my specific SSR, with its 4.56 gearing, spends the MAJORITY of its time in any run from 0 to 60 or 0 to 1/4 mile.
Reese grinned, but said basically "you haven't seen ANYTHING yet". He showed me how my SSR's air/fuel ratio is laughable right now, and assured me that once he has done the computer tuning (early next week), it's going to be a LOT stronger. In fact, what we have right now is very rough because of the untuned air fuel ratio AND the GM torque management programming shutting down the festivities early.
The sound of the new exhaust system is just plain awesome. Reese likes exhaust systems that are exciting without being obnoxious, and he nailed it on this first attempt on my 04 SSR with his fulyl custom system. At idle, INside the car, you cannot hear it. OUTside the car, it is best described as a restrained rumble with great presence. That all changes when you hit the gas pedal. Think large displacement motorcycle withOUT the obnoxious component. Driving it home today, I got TRIPLE takes instead of the normal DOUBLE takes. At highway crusuing speeds (I tried 50 through 75), it has just the right restrained volume and sound quality to be "reassuring", and will not interfere with the music system, but again, if you hit the gas, you WILL get other drivers' attention. The guys at the car wash were in awe. The Porsche Carrerra 4, the BMW Z4, and the Nissan 300Z (ALL 3 of them black in color just like my SSR) were totally ignored today.
The workmanship on the exhaust was just exquisite. I had stopped in Thursday evening to see how things were going, and caught the guys with the SSR up on the hoist, the exhaust half done at that point, and both Reese and Chris wearing the biggest grins I have ever seen. I cannot emphasize enough just how CLEAN they made that installation appear. It looks FAR better than a factory install or any aftermarket install I have yet seen, as the dual pipes track each other with PERFECT alignment, and the two mufflers are mounted PRECISELY in line beside each other along the frame rail, like the dual barrels of a sawed off shotgun. It's coffee table photography material.
It is going to take me days to analyze all the raw data I got from several dyno runs, but I wanted to let you guys know: Reese and his team DELIVER. And not just on power, but on workmanship and artistry of install, and on sound.
I am totally blown away.
And, it's going to get BETTER! (the tuning is yet to happen, guys!!)
For those of you planning to come to the Atlanta gathering Sunday, at the Varisty at Town Center, you will be able to see, and HEAR, my SSR in person, along with Reese's own 427 smallblock (yes, smallblock) Corvette. See you there!
p.s. Buffy: Eat your heart out, guy. Your only hope is to convince Pat that HER own SSR needs this "to get better gas mileage"!! jg