Full Exhaust Swap, 2011 V6


New Member
*Edit* Here's a video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GVCcrAbKQA&feature=player_detailpage

A few months ago I became the owner of a 2011 V6 Mustang. It's an awesome car, and there is no way I am going to leave the car completely stock. Sadly, there aren't too many performance upgrades on the market for this generation of mustang. But, there are CAI's, exhaust systems, and even a supercharger out there for the 3.7's. I don't have $5,000 for a supercharger, so CAI and exhaust it is! After looking through the list of threads for 3.7L mustangs, I noticed that there are only a handful of threads mentioning exhaust, and none of them have detailed installation info. So, here's my contribution to the 3.7 forum: a full exhaust swap.

Thanks to my friend Blue9838 for helping with the installation.

Here's a little information on the swap:
Parts Installed: BBK long tube headers, BBK catted X-pipe, and Magnaflow competition catback exhaust.
Installation time: This took about a full day to do.
Tools needed: Jacks and jack stands, sawzall, various wrenches (socket, combo, crescent), breaker bar, work lights, ramps or blocks of wood.

The first challenge was getting the car off the ground. The unibody construction and massive amount of plastic on the car made finding jack spots difficult. We eventually placed the jack under the long rectangular sections of the frame under the car. We placed a piece of 2x4 on the jack, and placed the front wheels on blocks to give us some clearance.

We removed the stock exhaust starting with the mufflers and working our way up the the exhaust manifold. With the jack on the rear differential we lifted up the car, pulled off the stock mufflers, and cut out the stock pipes. Getting the new pipes on turned out to be harder than expected. I don't think Ford had exhaust swaps in mind when they designed this car. Some other forums we looked at said that this swap could not be done without a lift, as there is not enough room for the new pipes to be maneuvered into place. While a lift would certainly make this easier, it is not necessary. We ended up using two jacks to lift the body of car up from the middle. This took the tension off the suspension, and we were able to slide the new pipes into place.

http://i.imgur.com/MeBE9.jpg http://i.imgur.com/uUFgN.jpg

The stock H-pipe is all welded together, and for the life of us we couldn't undo the nuts on the flanges connecting the catalytic converters to the exhaust manifolds. So, after removing the O2 sensors (which you keep), we cut apart the stock midpipes, unbolted the stock manifolds (no easy task), and removed the entire system from underneath the car. We were a little surprised to find that there were no hangers on the midpipes. Also, keep the stock camps that connect the H-pipe to the long pipes going to the mufflers. You will reuse those.

Good luck getting the exhaust manifolds off. There's 6 bolts on each one, and the ones under the manifolds are completely out of sight. The passenger side manifold is especially difficult to remove. A heater hose and the wiring harness leave only a little room to move to work.


With all that off, we started putting the new parts on, starting with the headers. The headers come with new, nicer gaskets, and flange bolts. It also uses the bolts from the stock exhaust manifolds. We found it easier to life them into place from underneath the car. Getting the gaskets in place and inserting all the bolts gave us a few headaches. If you do this, be sure some extensions and deep well sockets on hand. Once in place, the headers look beautiful.


What also makes the headers beautiful is that the place the socket and flanges for the new X-pipe at a perfect spot. Since there are no hangers for the midpipes, we used a jack stand to support the X-pipe while we bolted it to the headers. We also attached the cat back pipes to the X-pipe. Since this X-pipe replaces the stock H-pipe, any catback exhaust will hook to it no problem. The headers and X-pipe come with extensions for the O2 sensors, so you don't have to doing any wire cutting and soldering. We found that the driver side O2 sensor didn't need the extension, and that the other wires dangled down below the car. Some zip ties solved that issue.


With everything else in place, it took only a few minutes to hook up the new mufflers. "Mufflers" might be too strong of a word to describe them.


My friend claims he can already notice performance gains. I'd like to think that there are some nice gains, since I spend $1,500 on parts. Hopefully I can get my car on a dyno sometime to see how it's performing. The car sounds great now, and is obviously a lot louder. For most driving the sound is fine, but on hills the drone can be a little overpowering. That being said, I think it was a great investment. Goes well with my Airaid CAI and VMP tuner.


New Member
Haha ya. Along with new wheels, spoiler, smoked head and tail lights. Basically my car is going to be come my crack.