In part one, we introduced Jacob of Auto Autopsy, and took a closer look at a cheap TurboX that he decided to warm up a little. Of course, with anything like this we needed a baseline to see just where we started from, so he took the Saab to a dyno and got some numbers. With that out of the way, we get to dig in and start turning wrenches, and by that I mean UPGRADES. One of the first and most common upgrades to make to any car is the exhaust. Often restrictive from the factory, an OE exhaust is designed to be quiet and transport exhaust from the front of the car to the back. That’s about it.
A performance exhaust is of course designed to optimize the egress of exhaust gasses. With better air egress, of course you also enjoy better air ingress…and eventually more power. The handy side effect is that removing the restrictive OE piping and muffler often reveals a louder and sportier exhaust note. Case in point, the Auto Autopsy Saab Turbo X. The car came with “gutted” (ie no baffle) mufflers when he purchased it used, which usually accomplishes 1 of 2 of the above details. It was certainly louder, however power was most likely not effected. Being a Turbo car, the best place to focus your energy is in the downpipe.
The downpipe hooks directly up to the turbocharger, and by expanding the diameter you increase the volume of the chamber the exhaust is directly dumping into. By increasing the volume, you lower the pressure, allowing more exhaust to pack in (even if your stock diameter exhaust tubing is still restrictive). The effect of this is dramatically increase turbo spool times. Bigger power gains can be had with a full 3in “Turbo back” Krona exhaust kit, but for a solid sports car experience, just replacing the downpipe is a great place to start. The kit available specifically for the V6 cars also has a midpipe portion, extending this high volume, high flow segment.
eEuroparts.com carries Krona exhaust, handmade in the USA, for most Saab cars. Downpipes as well as full turbo-back exhaust systems are available. Drop your car into the vehicle selector at the top of the site and see what kind of exhaust and intake upgrades are available for your Saab!
And to close, a gratuitous exhaust sound compilation.