Bang for Your Buck: Cheap and Effective Performance Parts

Uncategorized : November 6, 2008

Cheap and Effective. Sound good to you? It sure does to me. It’s all about getting power for cheap nowadays. I think it’s time to go over some inexpensive but effective mods you can make to your vehicle for your budget build.

National Speed eStore - AEM Cold Air IntakeIntake
It’s pretty hard to drink something through a coffee stirrer, isn’t it? That’s what your factory air intake is like to your motor. An aftermarket intake has a larger diameter pipe with a less restrictive path than factory, and with a freer breathing filter. Not only will an aftermarket intake reflect gains in the seat of the pants, but it will add a nice growl to your factory motor! 

National Speed eStore - Catback Exhaust



Another popular and effective mod is exhaust. Take that same coffee stirrer, flip it around, and blow into it. That’s your factory exhaust. With more air being introduced into your intake system, now you need a proper way to remove it. Stock exhaust is very restrictive and doesn’t allow all the air entering the intake system to exit effectively, thus causing excessive backpressure. Excessive backpressure chokes up your engine, not giving you all the power your motor is creating. A good way of eliminating all this unnecessary backpressure is to get an aftermarket exhaust system.

If you want to remain legal, you can find a good quality catback exhaust for your vehicle for pretty cheap. This is arguably the biggest improvement to sound you can make. (Or detriment, depending on the listener.)


National Speed eStore - HeadersHeaders
Headers are the central part in between your Intake and Exhaust. Without proper flow in between these two items, there would be a bottleneck, which in turn, would choke you of your potential power. Headers, or an exhaust manifold as some call it, relieve your intake manifold of backpressure caused by an ineffective design. One header relieves one bank of exhaust ports, so that’s 1 header for the 4 banger guys and 2 for everyone with a few more cylinders


Now that you have your car breathing healthily, you need to have your ECU compensate for all this new airflow. Getting a tune is one of the most important things you can do to your car. Not only will a tune let your ECU know that much more air is entering the system, but your fuel and spark maps will be adjusted more aggressively to unlock all the power that you now added.

When looking for the best bang for the buck, these mods are vital to your build. While generally the most common, the importance of these mods is often overlooked. Any of these items would be a great addition to a Christmas list for any car enthusiast.