VIDEO: Project Mustang Gets Lairy New Milltek Exhaust
The only thing better than a V8 at full chat is one firing through a hand-finished stainless steel exhaust, right?
The best music you'll hear today!
There must be a moment in every Mustang owner’s purchase decision where they decide whether they want the 2.3 EcoBoost motor, or the full fat 5.0 Coyote. I totally get that some people like the smaller running costs of the 4 banger – and its inherent tuneability, but for me, the Mustang is a truly iconic ‘muscle car’ – and to wear that badge, you need to be packing at least eight cylinders – and ideally a small block to back it up.
All Mustangs are great - it's just that the V8 ones are greater...
The benefits of a V8 may not be environmental, but they do tend to make up for their lack of polar-bear friendliness with superb soundtrack and decent amounts of grunt. It’s why we buy them. They sound amazing, and they go well.
Factory system on a Mustang is surprisingly good
Keen to add a little more of both of these fine qualities, I had decided to fit an exhaust to mine. Wanting to keep some semblance of warranty and legality in place, I felt a GPF-back system would be the canny choice, and as I occasionally leave or return home at daft hours, I also wanted to keep the clever valves that link between drive modes and let you dial up or dial down the noise.
You know you're getting old when you start worrying about your neighbours
There are a world of great exhaust brands out there, but straight to the top of my list was the hand-finished masterpiece created by Milltek. Not only is this long-established firm on my doorstep here in the Midlands, but I like the fact that they were one of the very first European tuners to get hold of the ‘new’ Mustang when it first came out, running an impressive demo car and developing a system that not only worked brilliantly on the standard motor, but also gave you the latitude for further tuning with better flow and longevity than the standard system – not to mention a larger bore to get those gasses out.
Milltek has form with the Mustang
The icing on the cake for this choice was the chance to have it fitted by the very man, R&D Engineer Kev Hawkins, that designed the system in the first place. Now, I don’t know about you, but if I get the opportunity to have any mod fitted by the talent behind it, it makes a big difference. Nobody can fit it better!
Kev is the R&D genius behind many Milltek systems - including the Mustang!
A trip over to Milltek’s bustling factory and research centre in Derby’s busy Pride Park saw Kev make short work of removing the old system in one piece before fitting up the smart new stainless steel ‘X’ pipe in the middle and centring everything ready for the gorgeous new rear boxes. To get everything working as per factory, Milltek has cleverly made bosses to swap the OEM valves and wiring straight over, meaning that it’s a literal ‘plug and play’ swap for the new parts. Remove, refit – and clip back into the loom. Everything works like we’re back in the showroom!
Valves simply swap over from factory box to the new Milltek part
Another impressive feature was the quality of the fit and the clearance of the new, fatter pipes. Sure, Kev took his time and had a pleasingly OCD way of lining up brackets and clamps, but it was clear that the system was beautifully jigged. Even with all the extra girth, nothing sits near anything else. No knocks on this system!
OCD? Yes please!
And that just left tip choice. With the lairy orange hue really making the black plastics pop in contrast, I decided a nice subtle Carbon Fibre GT trim would be the way to go. It’s real carbon too, adding just a little bit of extra show-pose factor into the mix.
Carbon tips really suit the paint colour and look great against factory plastics
As the video shows, it sounds as good as it looks, switching easily between drive modes and making each mile sound and feel better than ever before. It’s a nicer, higher note with a pleasing ‘ring’ that sounds positively European. Crazily, this higher tone also means the car is quieter on the motorway, having lost a little of its bassy bottom end.
Looks good. Sounds good. Sorted!
The only downside? The amazing noises mean I’m driving everywhere with the windows down, in at least two gears too low… and the fuel is costing me a fortune! Small price to pay though, eh?
Until next time!