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Cat-less Downpipes | Are They Worth the Upgrade?

Most factory downpipes will have at least one very restrictive catalytic converter. These do a great job of cleaning the exhaust gases but are also very restrictive causing potential power to be lost. By removing the factory downpipe and replacing it with a high flowing unit you are allowing the turbo to more efficiently move gases away from the turbine which creates more power. 

An aftermarket downpipe ensures better airflow and less restrictions, resulting in a smoother engine, more horsepower and perhaps the loudest sound possible! However, it is important to choose a downpipe that fits exactly to your vehicle. 

Before anything else, you should know that there are two types of downpipes: catted downpipes which have a high-flow catalytic converter and the catless downpipe which we’ll get to below.

Let’s start by mentioning that aftermarket downpipes are good for making power. If you are looking to make the most power from your stock turbo, a downpipe is a critical piece of the puzzle. The downpipe paves the way for Stage 2 power levels.

As we all know, the job of a catalytic converter is to clean the exhaust gases as they pass through the catalyst. This means you will not have to worry about the smell of raw exhaust fumes. If you purchase a catless downpipe be aware that the vehicle is going to smell as those exhaust gases are not being cleaned before exiting the vehicle.

Going catless has the benefits of eliminating restrictions in your exhaust + reduces back pressure on the engine to allow for more airflow, thus more power. Eliminating the cats will also have the added benefits of reducing weight, and therefore incremental performance gains.

Now for the question you should really be asking:  Is it legal?

The short answer is NO. These aren't legal for road use.

Modifying the factory emission systems automatically guarantees you will not pass local or state emissions. Depending on where you live, these emissions checks could range between yearly to every few years. On top of that, you have to worry about being pulled over, because probably won’t even pass a sniff test.

There is also the smell that you have to deal with. Sitting in traffic with the aroma of your exhaust might not be a good idea if you plan to daily drive your catless car.

But if you plan to track your car, going catless as a means of adding power, torque, and having an angrier exhaust note, it’s a win!

So, it’s best to do your research first. And then you can just buy online or give one of our world-class professionals a call at 1-480-966-3040.