Wheel Chasers

The Art of Loud Cars: Exploring Modifications Culture and Legality

The sound of a car’s engine has always held a special appeal for many drivers. In recent years, there has been a growing trend among car enthusiasts to modify their exhaust systems in order to achieve a louder, more aggressive sound.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the most common modifications that car enthusiasts use to increase the loudness of their cars, and we’ll discuss whether aftermarket exhausts are worth the investment.

Common Modifications to Increase Car Loudness

There are several modifications that car enthusiasts use to increase the loudness of their cars. Here are some of the most popular ones:


Removing the muffler

The muffler is a component in the exhaust system that is designed to reduce the noise produced by the engine. By removing the muffler, the exhaust gases can flow more freely, resulting in a louder exhaust note.

However, removing the muffler is illegal in most states, and it can also result in a loss of power and torque, as well as reduced fuel efficiency. In addition, many car enthusiasts find that a muffler delete can result in a drone inside the cabin at certain RPMs, which can be tiring on longer drives.

2. Installing a cat-back exhaust system

A cat-back exhaust system is an aftermarket exhaust system that replaces the exhaust system from the catalytic converter back.

These systems often have larger diameter piping, mandrel bends, and larger, less restrictive mufflers, which can result in a louder exhaust note. 3.

Installing a resonator delete

A resonator delete is a modification that involves removing the resonator from the exhaust system. The resonator is a component in the exhaust system that is designed to reduce the noise produced by the engine.

By removing the resonator, the exhaust gases can flow more freely, resulting in a louder exhaust note. However, as with the muffler delete, removing the resonator can result in a drone inside the cabin at certain RPMs, which can be tiring on longer drives.

4. Installing an axle-back exhaust system

An axle-back exhaust system is an aftermarket exhaust system that replaces the muffler and pipes from the rear axle back to the tailpipe.

These systems often have larger diameter piping, mandrel bends, and larger, less restrictive mufflers, which can result in a louder exhaust note. Are Aftermarket Exhausts Worth the Investment?

Now that we’ve discussed some of the most common modifications used to increase car loudness, let’s talk about whether aftermarket exhausts are worth the investment. There are several benefits to installing an aftermarket exhaust system.

Here are some of the most significant ones:

1. Increased horsepower and torque

Aftermarket exhaust systems often have larger diameter piping, mandrel bends, and less restrictive mufflers, which can improve the flow of exhaust gases.

This can result in increased horsepower and torque. 2.

Improved fuel efficiency

While not always the case, many aftermarket exhaust systems can improve fuel efficiency by reducing the backpressure in the exhaust system. This can result in a more efficient engine, which can use less fuel.

3. Enhanced exhaust note

Of course, one of the primary reasons why car enthusiasts install aftermarket exhaust systems is to achieve a louder, more aggressive exhaust note.

This can make the car sound more sporty and exciting, and can be a source of pride for the owner. However, there are also some downsides to installing an aftermarket exhaust system.

Here are some of the most significant ones:

1. Increased noise

Of course, with a louder exhaust note comes increased noise.

This can be a problem for drivers who live in areas with strict noise ordinances, or for those who frequently drive long distances. 2.

Higher cost

Aftermarket exhaust systems can be expensive, especially those made of high-quality materials like stainless steel. This can be a significant investment for many car enthusiasts.

3. Legal issues

In many states, modifying the exhaust system is illegal, and can result in fines and penalties.

It’s important for car enthusiasts to check with state and local regulations before making any modifications to their exhaust systems.


In conclusion, increasing the loudness of a car’s exhaust system can be an appealing modification for many car enthusiasts. There are several common modifications used to achieve this, including removing the muffler, installing a cat-back exhaust system, removing the resonator, and installing an axle-back exhaust system.

While there are several benefits to installing an aftermarket exhaust system, including increased horsepower and torque, improved fuel efficiency, and a more aggressive exhaust note, there are also some downsides, including increased noise, higher cost, and legal issues. Ultimately, whether or not an aftermarket exhaust system is worth the investment will depend on the individual driver’s goals, needs, and priorities.

In our previous article, we discussed the various modifications car enthusiasts use to increase the loudness of their cars and whether aftermarket exhaust systems are worth the investment. In this article, we’ll delve deeper into the pros and cons of loud cars and how to balance volume with legality.

Pros of Loud Cars

1. Enhanced Driving Experience

For car enthusiasts, the sound of a loud engine or exhaust system is a significant factor that contributes to their driving experience.

A loud car can offer an exhilarating and satisfying driving experience, adding excitement to the driving experience.


Increased Safety

Loud cars can positively affect safety, particularly in a busy city where there is a lot of traffic noise. A loud car can attract pedestrians and other drivers’ attention, making the driver feel more secure and confident on the road.

3. Confidence Boost

Loud cars can provide a sense of power and confidence for the driver, enhancing their driving experience.

Cons of Loud Cars

1. Noise Pollution

A loud car can disturb peace and quietness in the community, causing tension, discomfort, and annoyance.

Excessive noise can be harmful to health, cause sleep disturbance, and raise stress levels. 2.

Risk of Getting Pulled Over

Most state laws have legal limits on noise pollution levels, and exceeding these limits can result in police pulling drivers over and issuing hefty fines. Loud cars also make it easy to be caught by law enforcement and issued traffic tickets.

3. Financial Expense

Installing exhaust systems or aftermarket mufflers can be very expensive, and high-quality systems can put a considerable dent in a car enthusiast’s pockets.

Balancing Volume with Legality

It is possible to balance volume with legality while enjoying a loud car. Here are some tips that can be useful:


Know the Legal Limits

Read up on your state’s laws regarding exhaust systems, noise, and traffic rules. It will help you know how to evaluate the volume of your car and determine how to keep it within a legal limit.

2. Opt for Quality Exhaust Systems

If you want to keep the volume of your car within a legal limit, investing in a quality exhaust system may be a good option.

Such a system can adequately increase your car’s volume without exceeding the legal limit. 3.

Stay Away from Modifications That Violate the Law

There are certain modifications that violate the law, resulting in penalties when caught. Stay away from such modifications, including removing the muffler completely, as this can make your car excessively loud and illegal.

4. Test Your Car’s Volume

Take your car for a drive and listen to the sound coming from the exhaust.

Listen to the noise when you are idling and when you are revving and check whether it is too loud and confirm it is within the legal limit. 5.

Be Respectful

When driving in residential areas, be respectful of other residents and drive your car quietly. Loud revving in these areas can be disturbing to residents and could prompt complaints to local law enforcement.


In conclusion, loud cars can offer an exhilarating driving experience, but they can also create noise pollution and legal issues. However, with proper and lawful modifications coupled with respectable driving, it is possible to enjoy a loud car without being a nuisance to the community.

It is important to balance volume with legality so that you can fully appreciate the driving experience and stay within the confines of the law. In this article, we are going to explore the top 10 affordable loud cars and the science behind car sound systems.

So, whether you are a car enthusiast or just curious about loud cars, this article is for you.

Top 10 Affordable Loud Cars

1. Ford Mustang GT

The Ford Mustang GT is a muscle car that offers an exhaust note that is aggressive in tone and powerful.

Its 5.0-liter V8 engine produces a deep rumble that can be heard even from a distance. 2.

Chevrolet Camaro SS

The Camaro SS is a sports car that boasts a tuneful and distinctive exhaust note. The engine delivers a low growl that enhances the driving experience.

3. Dodge Charger R/T

The Dodge Charger R/T is another muscle car that offers a rumbly V8 sound that car enthusiasts love.

The engine produces a satisfying big-block rumble that is music to the ears. 4.

Subaru WRX STI

The Subaru WRX STI is an all-wheel-drive sports car with a turbocharged engine that provides a raspy exhaust note that is unique and aggressive. 5.

BMW M240i

The BMW M240i is a small luxury car that houses a turbocharged inline 6-cylinder engine that produces a smooth and powerful sound. It offers a unique combination of power and refinement.

6. Volkswagen Golf R

The Golf R is a hatchback with all-wheel-drive and a turbocharged engine that produces a growling exhaust note.

The sound is not too loud but still aggressive and punchy. 7.

Honda Civic Type R

The Civic Type R is a high-performance, front-wheel-drive car with a turbocharged engine that produces a throaty exhaust note. The sound is refined and powerful.

8. Mazda MX-5 Miata

The Mazda MX-5 Miata is a sports car that oozes fun and is playful to drive.

Its exhaust system is optimally tuned to provide a sporty and fun sound that is perfect for a small sports car. 9.

Hyundai Veloster N

The Hyundai Veloster N is a compact hatchback that has a pleasant and fun exhaust note. The sound is not too loud, but it is sporty and enjoyable.

10. Volkswagen Jetta GLI

The Volkswagen Jetta GLI is a sporty sedan that offers a sporty engine sound that is refined and sophisticated.

The engine provides a satisfying burble that is resonant.

The Science Behind Car Sound Systems

Now, let us dive into the science behind car sound systems. The sound produced by a car’s engine and exhaust system depends on various factors.

The size of the engine, the number of cylinders, the type of exhaust system, and the material all play a role. The engine itself is responsible for creating sound by the combustion of fuel.

The sound waves are produced when exhaust gasses leave the engine and enter the exhaust system. The exhaust system itself is designed to alter the sound waves by creating different resonances.

These resonances are created by the pipes’ shape and length and the mufflers’ design. Sound waves can be manipulated and modified to produce different tones and pitches.

The engine, exhaust system, and transmission are engineered to work together and provide a satisfying sound under different driving conditions. Turbocharged engines produce a different sound from naturally aspirated engines, for example.

To achieve a loud, powerful sound, a straight through exhaust system with larger diameter pipes and less restrictive mufflers can be used. However, such modifications can be illegal and result in hefty fines.

In conclusion, the sound of a car is a significant part of the driving experience. The exhaust system plays an essential role in shaping the sound wave and enhancing the driving experience.

It is crucial to strike a balance between loudness, legality, and refinement. The science behind car sound systems is fascinating and involves several factors that need to be considered when modifying a car’s exhaust system.

In our previous article, we explored the top 10 affordable loud cars and the science behind car sound systems. Now, let’s take a closer look at the best exhaust systems for different car models and how to get the most out of your car’s exhaust sound.

Best Exhaust Systems for Different Car Models

1. Ford Mustang GT: Borla S-Type Cat-Back Exhaust System

The Borla S-Type Cat-Back Exhaust System is an excellent choice for the Ford Mustang GT.

It offers a deep, aggressive tone that enhances the natural sound of the Mustang’s V8 engine. 2.

Chevrolet Camaro SS: MagnaFlow Competition Series Cat-Back Exhaust System

The MagnaFlow Competition Series Cat-Back Exhaust System is perfect for the Chevrolet Camaro SS. It delivers a rich, muscular tone that complements the Camaro’s sporty nature.

3. Dodge Charger R/T: Corsa Xtreme Cat-Back Exhaust System

For the Dodge Charger R/T, the Corsa Xtreme Cat-Back Exhaust System is a great option.

It provides a bold, aggressive sound that matches the Charger’s powerful presence. 4.

Subaru WRX STI: Invidia N1 Cat-Back Exhaust System

The Invidia N1 Cat-Back Exhaust System is a popular choice for the Subaru WRX STI. It produces a deep, rumbling tone that adds to the WRX STI’s sporty character.

5. BMW M240i: AWE Tuning Touring Edition Exhaust System

The AWE Tuning Touring Edition Exhaust System is a top pick for the BMW M240i.

It delivers a refined, sophisticated sound that complements the M240i’s luxury performance. 6.

Volkswagen Golf R: Milltek Sport Non-Resonated Cat-Back Exhaust System

The Milltek Sport Non-Resonated Cat-Back Exhaust System is ideal for the Volkswagen Golf R. It provides a crisp, sporty tone that enhances the Golf R’s performance-oriented nature.

7. Honda Civic Type R: Greddy Supreme SP Exhaust System

The Greddy Supreme SP Exhaust System is a great match for the Honda Civic Type R.

It offers an aggressive, throaty sound that complements the Type R’s sporty design. 8.

Mazda MX-5 Miata: Racing Beat Power Pulse Exhaust System

For the Mazda MX-5 Miata, the Racing Beat Power Pulse Exhaust System is a popular choice. It provides a sporty, yet refined tone that adds to the MX-5 Miata’s driving pleasure.

9. Hyundai Veloster N: Borla S-Type Cat-Back Exhaust System

The Borla S-Type Cat-Back Exhaust System is a recommended option for the Hyundai Veloster N.

It offers a deep, aggressive sound that matches the Veloster N’s sporty character. 10.

Volkswagen Jetta GLI: APR Cat-Back Exhaust System

The APR Cat-Back Exhaust System is a great fit for the Volkswagen Jetta GLI. It enhances the exhaust note with a deep, powerful tone that complements the GLI’s performance.

How to Get the Most Out of Your Car’s Exhaust Sound

1. Choose the Right Exhaust System

Selecting the right exhaust system for your car model is crucial in achieving the desired sound.

Look for reputable brands that offer systems specifically designed for your vehicle to ensure compatibility and optimal sound quality. 2.

Consider Sound Preferences

Different exhaust systems produce a range of sound profiles, from aggressive and loud to more refined and subtle tones. Consider your personal preference and the overall character of your car when choosing an exhaust system.

3. Opt for Quality Materials

Choosing exhaust systems made from high-quality materials such as stainless steel can enhance durability and ensure long-lasting performance.

Quality materials contribute to a better overall exhaust sound and durability. 4.

Get a Professional Installation

To maximize the sound quality and performance of your exhaust system, it is recommended to have it professionally installed. Installation by experienced technicians ensures proper alignment, optimized airflow, and prevents potential leaks or damage.

5. Maintain Your Exhaust System Regularly

Regular maintenance is essential to keep your exhaust system in optimal condition.

Check for signs of rust, loose components, or leaks. Clean the exhaust tips regularly to maintain their appearance and prevent carbon buildup.

6. Proper Driving Techniques

To fully enjoy your car’s exhaust sound, utilize proper driving techniques.

Experiment with different RPM ranges to experience the full range of sound profiles your exhaust system offers. 7.


Noise Regulations

While you may want your car to be louder, it is important to respect noise regulations in your area. Excessive noise can lead to fines and annoyance to others.

Ensure your modifications comply with local laws and regulations. 8.

Be Mindful of Others

Remember to be considerate of others while driving. Avoid excessive revving or loud accelerations in residential areas or late at night to prevent disturbing or upsetting those around you.

In conclusion, choosing the best exhaust system for your car’s model is essential in achieving an optimal sound profile. Take into consideration your preferences, quality materials, and professional installation to get the most out of your car’s exhaust sound.

Practice proper driving techniques and be mindful of noise regulations to enjoy your car’s sound while maintaining a respectful presence on the road. In our continued exploration of loud cars and their impact, let’s delve into the influence of car culture on loudness and provide some tips for maintaining a loud car.

The Influence of Car Culture on Loudness

Car culture plays a significant role in the popularity of loud cars. It is driven by a desire to stand out and create a unique identity within the automotive community.

Here are some aspects of car culture that contribute to the focus on loudness:

1. Performance and Power

Loudness is often associated with performance and power.

Car enthusiasts believe that a loud exhaust note is indicative of a high-performance engine. It gives the impression of a powerful and fast vehicle, which is appealing to many enthusiasts.

2. Aesthetics and Customization

Loudness is often seen as a statement of personal style and customization.

Car enthusiasts strive to create a unique and eye-catching vehicle that reflects their personality. A loud exhaust system can serve as a visual and audible representation of their individuality.

3. Camaraderie and Community

Car culture fosters a strong sense of camaraderie and community among enthusiasts.

Many car meets, shows, and gatherings revolve around showcasing unique and loud cars. The shared passion for cars and the admiration of loud exhaust notes create a sense of belonging and connection within the community.

4. Legacy and Tradition

Loud cars have a historical significance within car culture.

Muscle cars of the past were known for their loud and aggressive exhaust notes. The association between loudness and performance has been ingrained through generations, and car enthusiasts continue to admire and seek out that connection to automotive heritage.

Tips for Maintaining a Loud Car

1. Regular Inspection and Maintenance

To keep your loud car in optimal condition, regular inspection and maintenance are crucial.

Check for any signs of damage, leaks, or loose components in the exhaust system. Addressing these issues promptly can prevent further damage and ensure that the exhaust system continues to provide the desired sound.

2. Proper Cleaning and Care

Maintaining a loud car also involves proper cleaning and care.

Regularly clean the exhaust tips to remove any dirt, grime, or carbon buildup. This not only helps to maintain the appearance of the exhaust system but also prevents any potential blockage that could affect the sound quality.

3. Use High-Quality Fuel and Oil

Using high-quality fuel and oil can have a positive impact on the performance and sound of your car.

Premium or high-octane fuel can provide better combustion, resulting in a more efficient and powerful engine sound. Additionally, using high-quality oil helps to minimize engine wear and maintain optimal performance.

4. Drive Responsibly

While it can be tempting to show off the loud sound of your car, it is important to drive responsibly.

Reckless driving, excessive revving, or driving at high speeds in residential areas can create noise disturbances and negatively impact your car’s image. Always be respectful of others on the road and adhere to traffic laws.

5. Monitor

Noise Regulations

Stay up-to-date with noise regulations in your area to avoid legal issues.

Some localities have specific noise restrictions or decibel limits that pertain to aftermarket exhaust systems. Familiarize yourself with these regulations and ensure that your modifications comply with the law.

6. Consider Sound Dampening Techniques

If you find that the loudness of your car’s exhaust becomes tiresome or bothersome during long drives or for daily commuting, you may consider incorporating sound-dampening techniques into your vehicle.

Adding additional insulation or sound-deadening materials can help reduce cabin noise and create a more comfortable driving experience. 7.

Seek Professional Help

If you experience any issues with your exhaust system or have concerns about the sound quality, it is advisable to seek professional help. Visit a trusted automotive specialist or exhaust shop to receive expert advice, diagnosis, and assistance in maintaining and optimizing the sound of your car.

In conclusion, car culture greatly influences the desire for loud cars, driven by the pursuit of performance, customization, community, and heritage. Maintaining a loud car involves regular inspection and maintenance, proper cleaning, and using high-quality fuel and oil.

Responsible driving, adherence to noise regulations, and considering sound-dampening techniques can create a balance between enjoying the loudness and being considerate towards others. By following these tips, you can ensure that your loud car remains in excellent condition and provides the desired sound experience.

In our continued exploration of loud cars, we will now discuss the issue of noise pollution and its association with loud cars. Additionally, we will provide some recommendations for the best cars for a DIY loud exhaust.

Is Noise Pollution a Problem with Loud Cars? While the sound of a loud car may be exhilarating for some, it is important to acknowledge that noise pollution is a legitimate concern.

Excessive noise can have negative impacts on human health, the environment, and community well-being. Here are some key points to consider regarding noise pollution and loud cars:


Health Effects

Exposure to excessive noise can result in various health effects. Prolonged exposure to loud noise can lead to hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and stress-related health issues such as increased blood pressure and cardiovascular problems.

2. Disruption and Annoyance

Loud car exhausts can disrupt the peace and tranquility of residential neighborhoods and public spaces.

Constant exposure to loud noises can be highly annoying for people living or working in the vicinity. 3.

Sleep Disturbance

Loud car exhausts can also disturb sleep patterns and lead to sleep deprivation. This is particularly relevant for areas near busy streets or highways with high traffic and loud cars passing by during nighttime hours.

4. Environmental Impact

Noise pollution resulting from loud car exhausts can negatively impact the environment, particularly in urban areas.

It can disturb wildlife, disrupt ecological balance, and contribute to overall noise pollution levels in the environment. 5.

Legal Consequences

In many regions and jurisdictions, there are regulations in place to control noise pollution. These regulations set limits on noise produced by vehicles, including the sound levels permitted for aftermarket exhaust modifications.

Violating these regulations can result in fines, penalties, or even the requirement to remove or modify the exhaust system. It is important for car enthusiasts to be mindful of these concerns and strive to strike a balance between their enjoyment of loud cars and respect for their environment and community.

Best Cars for a DIY Loud Exhaust

For those interested in creating a DIY loud exhaust, here are some car models that are commonly chosen for this purpose:

1. Ford Mustang

The Ford Mustang is a popular choice for a DIY loud exhaust.

Its V8 engine and muscular design lend themselves well to modifications that enhance the exhaust sound. 2.

Chevrolet Camaro

The Chevrolet Camaro is another suitable option for a DIY loud exhaust. Its aggressive styling and powerful engines make it an ideal candidate for those seeking a throaty, attention-grabbing exhaust note.

3. Subaru WRX

The Subaru WRX is favored by car enthusiasts for its performance capabilities and rally-inspired design.

Its distinctive boxer engine can be modified to produce a unique and louder exhaust sound. 4.

Honda Civic

The Honda Civic is known for its versatility and aftermarket modification options. With various engine and trim options, it is a popular choice for those seeking to create a DIY loud exhaust.

5. Volkswagen Golf GTI/R

The Volkswagen Golf GTI and Golf R are compact hatchbacks that offer sporty performance and can be modified to produce a loud exhaust sound.

Their turbocharged engines provide a solid foundation for customization. 6.


The BMW M3 and M4 are high-performance vehicles that are often chosen for their overall performance and sound. Their inline-six engines can be modified to produce an aggressive exhaust note when properly customized.

These are just a few examples, but it is important to keep in mind that modifying the exhaust system can have legal implications. It is crucial to research local laws and regulations, adhere to noise restrictions, and ensure the modifications are within legal limits before proceeding with a DIY loud exhaust project.

In conclusion, noise pollution is a legitimate concern associated with loud cars, as excessive noise can impact human health and environmental well-being. It is essential to be mindful of noise levels and strive to balance the enjoyment of loud cars with respect for the community.

When considering a DIY loud exhaust, it is important to choose suitable car models and ensure compliance with local regulations to minimize negative impacts on the environment and community. In our continued exploration of loud cars, we will now discuss the impact of loud cars on resale values and whether electric cars pose a threat to the popularity of loud cars.

The Impact of Loud Cars on Resale Values

When it comes to resale values, loud cars can have both positive and negative consequences. Here are some key factors to consider:


Appeal to Enthusiasts

Loud cars often have a strong appeal to automotive enthusiasts and certain niche markets. This can work in favor of resale value, as there is a demand for vehicles that offer unique and attention-grabbing exhaust sounds.

For some buyers, a loud car is a desirable feature that can contribute to a higher resale value. 2.

Broader Market Considerations

However, it is important to recognize that loudness may not appeal to every potential buyer. Some individuals may prioritize a quieter driving experience and may be deterred by a loud car.

This can limit the potential market for loud cars and potentially result in a lower resale value compared to more universally appealing vehicles. 3.

Location and

Noise Regulations

Resale values can also be influenced by geographical factors and noise regulations. In areas with stricter noise regulations, loud cars may be less desirable due to potential legal issues or community disturbances.

This can impact the perceived value of loud cars in those regions. 4.

Condition and Maintenance

Regardless of the sound, the condition and maintenance of a vehicle play a significant role in determining its resale value. Regular maintenance, proper care, and keeping modifications within legal limits are important factors to consider when owning a loud car.

A well-maintained loud car can potentially retain better resale value than one that is poorly maintained. Ultimately, the impact of loudness on resale value may vary depending on the specific buyer’s preferences, market demand, geographic location, and the overall condition of the vehicle.

Are Electric Cars a Threat to Loud Cars? As electric vehicles (EVs) gain popularity, some may wonder if they pose a threat to the future popularity of loud cars.

Here are some key points to consider:

1. Shifting Preferences

As society becomes more concerned about environmental impact and seeks sustainable transportation options, the demand for electric vehicles continues to rise.

This shift in preferences may influence the overall market demand for loud cars, as the emphasis on sustainability and quiet operation may become more prominent. 2.

Unique Characteristics of Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles offer their own set of unique characteristics that appeal to buyers. Instant torque, environmental friendliness, and low ownership costs are among the factors that make EVs attractive to a growing consumer base.

The focus on these features may result in a decreased emphasis on the loudness of vehicles. 3.

Advancements in Electric Vehicle Sound Design

To address concerns about pedestrian safety, some EV manufacturers have begun incorporating artificial sounds to alert pedestrians of the vehicle’s presence. While these sounds may not replicate the traditional loudness of ICE (internal combustion engine) cars, they can still create unique and attention-grabbing auditory experiences.

4. Niche Market and Enthusiast Appeal

Despite the rise of EVs, there will likely always be a niche market and enthusiast appeal for loud cars.

While the overall market demand for loud cars may shift, there will still be individuals who appreciate the unique sound and driving experience offered by internal combustion engines. In c

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