We tend to focus on squeezing more power from our engines, but many forget the exhaust can also be restricting performance.
Take the 4.5-litre TDV8 in the Troopcarrier (70 and 200 Series). The standard exhaust system is too small in diameter – though many go overboard with huge dump pipes and exhausts that mainly create noise but don’t help those who tour and tow with their 4x4s.
The system we’ve fitted to this Troopy doesn’t exceed noise limits but it sounds beaut. I love the sound of a rumbling V8 and that was a drawcard – until I heard how dull the stocker is. That was easily fixed via a trip to Taipan XP in Queensland for one of its three-inch aluminised steel (304-grade stainless is available) mandrelbent systems, complete with Vortex sports muffler, resonator and ceramic dump pipe.
The V8 throb from the pipe isn’t harsh or loud and doesn’t sound like a sick dog barking. The sports muffler we chose is a little louder than the standard Taipan offering but after 4500km, I’ve not had a single noise complaint from my wife.
Taipan includes a ceramic-coated dump pipe with the system, which is effectively a slippery surface to help heat and air escape faster. It also has a threaded plug to accept a pyro gauge, to keep track of engine temps. The ceramic coating prevents heat coming up into the floor at the passenger’s feet.
The Taipan system follows the original route, albeit tucked higher above the chassis rails. Notably, the tailpipe also exits higher than standard to improve departure angles and prevent scrapes, and a vortex muffler speeds up the gases to aid the free-flowing characteristics and reduce exhaust gas temperatures.
A dedicated diesel-specific 200-cell catalytic converter offers improved emissions control. The converter is higher quality than stock and maintains legality – any vehicle from a factory must still have a cat installed after a replacement exhaust system is fitted.
The 409 stainless steel flex smooths out vibrations from the engine to the exhaust system, thus reducing the likelihood of cracking and damaging other fixing components. Notably, all flange plates of the Taipan system are 10mm thick to prevent warping. The lads also change the OE exhaust mounting rubbers during fitting – even though this Troopy only had about 20,000km on it, they were already compressed and deformed from their original shape.
An important inclusion is a small tailpipe resonator, which helps get rid of the offensive barking noises heard on some systems when stabbing the go-pedal.
Having driven the Troopy with the Taipan exhaust for a couple of months, I can feel it is freer flowing – it revs out faster and easier and maintains torque, meaning the back pressure has been maintained – something an overly large or free-flowing system will lose out on, unless other modifications are made.
Speaking of modifications, while most engine management modules increase exhaust gas temperatures, this freeflowing exhaust system helps avoid those same potentially engine-damaging heat increases. So it’s a win-win fitment of two products to safely increase the all-round power output.
The complete system is made in Queensland and is offered in DIY kit form.
It offers excellent quality, increased offroad clearance and it returns an awesome note – I haven’t listened to my Troopie’s stereo in weeks.
Available from: www.taipanxp.com.au
RRP: Model dependent.
We say: Awesome note; performance hike; improved ground clearance; Aussie-made.