There is nothing like the satisfaction from the deep rumbling or high-speed growling of your BMW performance exhaust. While this head-turning sound is more than enough of a reason to upgrade, it is the knowledge that such a sound is the product of a perfectly tuned engine system that is giving you more horsepower than the stock factory exhaust the BMW came with. Want that sound but don’t know where to start? Foreign Affairs Motorsport’s BMW Performance Shop has some tips for you on where to make the necessary changes to turn your ride into a power masterpiece with BMW performance accessories.
Pipe Headers Make All the Difference
Performance headers replace the exhaust manifold in your engine which often strangles the power potential of your BMW. If you want a way to increase horsepower and maybe boost a few other systems while you are at it, consider replacing your headers. But beware, there are many types, and talking to our technicians for the best fit for you will avoid accidentally bolting on a header that could actually decrease performance.
Performance is all in the curves. Stock header pipes tend to be made in a ‘crush-bend’ shape which have a rougher surface area which causes friction and slowing of the airflow out of your engine. Replacing these pipes with ‘mandrel bend’ piping will increase performance by giving the airflow a smooth exit with a consistent diameter. Less air resistance equals better performance for your BMW. If you are considering how much piping you want to replace with mandrel, the more you can do, the better.
South Florida’s overwhelming humidity and salt work hard to corrode the metal on your exhaust, which can leave the backside of your car looking less than perfect. Investing in a stainless-steel exhaust is great for resisting corrosion, but take note: they come in different resistant levels. The T304 stainless steel has a higher resistance, made especially for wetter and saltier weather, and worth it especially if you are using you BMW to back your boat into the water. BMW also offers a chrome nickel-alloy called Inconel which has the added bonus of being thinner and offering large weight reductions and good heat resistance.
As with BMW’s Inconel material, many performance exhausts can offer a lighter weight option than stock versions. This could be important to you for track racing when you want to cut weight and have performance gains as a result.
Generally a wider diameter exhaust pipe will allow a larger amount of airflow out of your system, which can show significant gains. Come over to our performance shop to analyze your system, and make sure you aren’t going too big because it is possible to pass thresholds that will start to impact performance negatively. Also make a note of the diameter of your piping before buying attachments. This is to make sure everything fits well before making an expensive mistake.
Shorty vs. Long Tube Headers
Shorty headers are quite popular for their shortness not extending past the bumper, their excellent performance gains for daily driving and low to mid-RPM’s, as well as being emission friendly to the CARB regulations. Long headers stick out about a foot from the rear of the car, and are for track cars or driving that often stays in the high RPM’s where maximum power usage is needed. Keep in mind for daily driving the Long header is inefficient as it may cause sluggishness while driving in town and pulling away, as well as the emissions exceeding the legal limit in certain states. Fortunately, Florida is not one of these states.
With performance exhausts appearance doesn’t have to be everything. If you are looking for power gains but want an understated appearance, many exhaust attachments will suit you nicely, because the smaller the mufflers, the greater sound and pressure they produce.
On the other hand, if flashy attachments and statement pieces are more what you are after, BMW offers many material additions to grab everyone’s attention. From titanium exhaust rims, to chrome or carbon fiber finish, to having double or split tail pipes. Many of these attachments offer a difference to performance or heat insulation, so consider what you are after and how it will affect the overall tuning you are going for.
Sound Boosts with Mufflers
Your BMW is attached with stock mufflers which heavily silence the roaring potential that your car was made for. Performance mufflers exist to right this wrong by offering you more efficient running of your engine, a boost in horsepower, fuel economy, and that deep throaty growl. The best part is that performance mufflers enhance the natural sound of your BMW while keeping their sounds under the legal restriction limits.
Depending on whether you are planning on equipping a muffler to your street ride or track ride, your options will differ, as some mufflers offer power boosts with magnificent sounds, but will not be legal for street use. Mufflers also need to be measured for perfect fit, which we can help you with.
If you are considering bringing out the inner voice of your BMW with our range of quality performance exhausts, come over to our service center or give us a call and we can get chatting about options. At Foreign Affairs Motorsport we are just as excited to release your BMW’s potential as you are, and we can offer many excellent solutions for tuning your ride for on the street and in the track.