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      08-24-2012, 01:51 PM   #1
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Megan Racing Exhaust Review -- Pics, Vids + Install Notes

(Vids at the end of the post for those not interested in installation matters and driving impressions.)

I've wanted to pick up an exhaust for months now, and have contemplated every brand and direction ad nauseam.

Truth be told, I want an Akra, but don't want to pay for it… damn you Slovenians and your titanium goodness.

So a couple of weeks ago I went in the complete opposite direction and picked up a Megan Racing Exhaust. First impressions upon receipt were favorable. It's light, the welds were as expected, and it came carefully packaged.







Finally got around to installing it last night with a much more mechanically inclined buddy.

Install Notes/Issues & Fitment

(I'm no mechanic, so please don't crucify me if I misidentify hangers, bushings, brackets, etc.)

Removing the stock exhaust was really quite straightforward. As suggested in other threads, we used a jack and 2x4 to support and finally bring down the muffler, which made life a lot easier. Once removed, we snapped a pic to show the significant contrast between the systems.



With a ~$500 system, one suspects that there has to be compromise somewhere. In my experience it was in the lack of sufficient hardware, and somewhat puzzling (yet consistent) misalignment and incorrect sizing in the side muffler hanger/bracket area.

Regarding the lack of sufficient hardware --

The muffler is in part supported by two side hangers/brackets. It's fastened to them via a lateral bolt, which bolts through the bushing and directly into the stock muffler hanger. Here you're looking down at the nut that is welded to the vertical muffler hanger on the stock system.



Long story short, the Megan system did not come with a nut to meet with this bolt. The bolt comes through the bushing to meet.. nothing. You can see it coming through the top of the bushing here.



The photo above also highlights the lack of alignment between one of the supports on the Megan exhaust and the bottom hole in the black bushing. This is the exhaust support that meets with (what appear to be) safety ties on both sides of the muffler (pic below). Not really an issue in and of itself -- probably not critical that the bolt actually insert into the bottom of the bushing. The problem is that the safety ties have a metal piece on the end with a bolt hole that is supposed to match up with the bolt hole on the exhaust support, and it doesn't. There is some overlap, but not enough.

The result is one ends up with a much smaller diameter bolt hole, and so the stock bolts cannot be used. We happened to have a couple of smaller bolts on hand to bolt up the ties.



So based on my experience, you'll need 4 nuts and 2 bolts (+ washers) not supplied by Megan to complete the install.

Also, one of the clamps for the connecting pipes was way too wide. We had to struggle like hell to compress the clamp just to get the bolt through far enough to catch both washers and the nut on the other side.

On a positive note, the Megan system did match up with all of the primary mounting points, and once installed everything was spot on. The muffler, tips. (Took a level to the tips -- perfect.) I find it an all-around massive improvement over stock in the looks department.









Driving Impressions

First, I'll say that I really like the sound of this thing. I've driven a couple hundred miles now in nearly all conditions -- city, highway, country road. It makes the driving experience more fun, more of an occasion, and that's what I was after.

How loud is it? Pretty damn loud. It's vocal for sure. Honestly, I think it's about twice as loud as the stock system. Engine noise used to overpower exhaust, and now it's the other way around. If I could I'd reduce the decibels by 25%'ish.

Does it drone? You betcha, but it's limited and bearable (to me). Anything south of 2 k rpm and the cabin is filled with some boomy buzziness -- especially with windows down. The good news is @ 2 and above it sounds fantastic. My typical shift point out of first is ~4k, which puts me engaging 2nd at above the drone-zone.

If I lived in a metropolitan area with mostly start/stop city driving, this would not be my exhaust because of the drone down low.

Highway? This I was really worried about. I drive the M to Florida, 2 hours to my "local" track, etc. so I really didn't want highway drone. The deal is it's dead quiet @ 75 mph in 6th. If you really listen you can hear it, but it's very faint.

I also travel a lot of 55 mph roads. Here it's a bit more noticeable, but again not overbearing or annoying. Doesn't disrupt phone calls or music.

We were able to shoot a few video clips that capture the sound fairly accurately I think.

Thanks for reading. Let me know if you have any questions!







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      08-24-2012, 02:01 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LM3 View Post
(Vids at the end of the post for those not interested in installation matters and driving impressions.)

I've wanted to pick up an exhaust for months now, and have contemplated every brand and direction ad nauseam.

Truth be told, I want an Akra, but don't want to pay for it damn you Slovenians and your titanium goodness.

So a couple of weeks ago I went in the complete opposite direction and picked up a Megan Racing Exhaust. First impressions upon receipt were favorable. It was light, the welds were as expected, and it came carefully packaged.







Finally got around to installing it last night with a much more mechanically inclined buddy.

Install Notes/Issues & Fitment

(I'm no mechanic, so please don't crucify me if I misidentify hangers, bushings, brackets, etc.)

Removing the stock exhaust was really quite straightforward. As suggested in other threads, we used a jack and 2x4 to support and finally bring down the muffler, which made life a lot easier. Once removed, we snapped a pic to show the significant contrast between the systems.



With a ~$500 system, one suspects that there has to be compromise somewhere. In my experience it was in the lack of sufficient hardware, and somewhat puzzling (yet consistent) misalignment and incorrect sizing in the side muffler hanger/bracket area.

Regarding the lack of sufficient hardware --

The muffler is in part supported by two side hangers/brackets. It's fastened to them via a lateral bolt, which bolts through the bushing and directly into the stock muffler hanger. Here you're looking down at the nut that is welded to the vertical muffler hanger on the stock system.



Long story short, the Megan system did not come with a nut to meet with this bolt. The bolt came through the bushing to meet.. nothing. You can see it coming through the top of the bushing here.



The photo above also highlights the lack of alignment between one of the supports on the Megan exhaust and the bottom hole in the black bushing. This is the exhaust support that meets with (what appear to be) safety ties on both sides of the muffler (pic below). Not really an issue in and of itself -- probably not critical that the bolt actually insert into the bottom of the bushing. The problem is that the safety ties have a metal piece on the end with a bolt hole that is supposed to match up with the bolt hole on the exhaust support, and they don't. There is some overlap, but not enough.

The result is one ends up with a much smaller diameter bolt hole, and so the stock bolts cannot be used. We happened to have a couple of smaller bolts on hand to bolt up the ties.



So based on my experience, you'll need 4 nuts and 2 bolts (+ washers) not supplied by Megan to complete the install.

Also, one of the clamps for the connecting pipes was way too wide. We had to struggle like hell to compress the clamp just to get the bolt through far enough to catch both washers and the nut on the other side.

On a positive note, the Megan system did match up with all of the primary mounting points, and once installed everything was spot on. The muffler, tips. (Took a level to the tips -- spot on.) I find it an all-around massive improvement over stock in the looks department.







Driving Impressions

First, I'll say that I really like the sound of this thing. I've driven a couple hundred miles now in nearly all conditions -- city, highway, country road. It makes the driving experience more fun, more of an occasion, and that's what I was after.

How loud is it? Pretty damn loud. It's vocal for sure. Honestly, I think it's about twice as loud as the stock system. Engine noise used to overpower exhaust, and now it's the other way around. If I could I'd reduce the decibels by 25%'ish.

Does it drone? You betcha, but it's limited and bearable (to me). Anything south of 2 k rpm and the cabin is filled with some boomy buzziness -- especially with windows down. The good news is @ 2 and above it sounds fantastic. My typical shift point out of first is ~4k, which puts me engaging 2nd at above the drone-zone.

If I lived in a metropolitan area with mostly start/stop city driving, this would not be my exhaust because of the drone down low.

Highway? This I was really worried about. I drive the M to Florida, 2 hours to my "local" track, etc. so I really didn't want highway drone. The deal is it's dead quiet @ 75 mph in 6th. If you really listen you can hear it, but it's very faint.

I also travel a lot of 55 mph roads. Here it's a bit more noticeable, but again not overbearing or annoying. Doesn't disrupt phone calls or music.

We were able to capture a few video clips that capture the sound fairly accurately I think.

Thanks for reading. Let me know if you have any questions!







I've had mine on for a yr. now...it has been perfect. Nothing broken or loose. It will get quite a bit louder with age. Wait until you do a primary cat delete..you think it sounds good now..he he.

Dave
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      08-24-2012, 02:02 PM   #3
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Congrats on the Megan exhaust, I was going to purchase one myself but could not wait (at that point) any longer for the release for the E90 fitment. For the money spent you could not go wrong. Good sounding exhaust with solid welds and built quality for the dollar.
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      08-24-2012, 02:08 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave07997S View Post
I've had mine on for a yr. now...it has been perfect. Nothing broken or loose. It will get quite a bit louder with age. Wait until you do a primary cat delete..you think it sounds good now..he he.

Dave
Really I should have done the x-pipe and primary cat delete yesterday since we had it up on ramps and were crawling around. I think the Megan combined with the Borla quad resonated pipe would sound good. (Full system for $2k.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by lenzm3edan View Post
Congrats on the Megan exhaust, I was going to purchase one myself but could not wait (at that point) any longer for the release for the E90 fitment. For the money spent you could not go wrong. Good sounding exhaust with solid welds and built quality for the dollar.
Thanks and agreed!
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      08-24-2012, 02:30 PM   #5
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I just received mine yesterday and will be installing soon. Do you happen to know what size bolts and nuts you used?
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      08-24-2012, 02:34 PM   #6
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I just received mine yesterday and will be installing soon. Do you happen to know what size bolts and nuts you used?
I forgot to make note. Sorry about that..

On the safety ties I'd say about 1/2 the diameter of the stock bolt.
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      08-24-2012, 07:15 PM   #7
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I installed mine a couple months ago and love it too. I cant comment on the install as a buddy of mine who's a BMW Tech installed it in about an hour and didnt mention the parts issue, but I know mine only came with clamps and no other hardware. I like the loudness and cant wait for it to get louder with age.
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      08-24-2012, 07:48 PM   #8
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Sounds really nice!! Congrats!!
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      08-24-2012, 07:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slapshot9 View Post
I installed mine a couple months ago and love it too. I cant comment on the install as a buddy of mine who's a BMW Tech installed it in about an hour and didnt mention the parts issue, but I know mine only came with clamps and no other hardware. I like the loudness and cant wait for it to get louder with age.
Yep, the connecting pipe clamps and the required hardware for those was included, just nothing else in my case.

This is a bit of a halfhearted complaint to be honest. I think it's an incredible value. Definitely exceeded my expectations. But had we not had all of the hardware on hand it would have been a shitty situation. Megan should really advise customers ahead of time what is required if it's not included with the system. An installation booklet, an installation tools/parts checklist, something..

Glad to hear you're still enjoying yours after some months.
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      08-24-2012, 07:56 PM   #10
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Sounds really nice!! Congrats!!
Thanks!
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      08-25-2012, 02:45 AM   #11
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In terms of volume what does this compare to? Also how does wot sound?
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      08-25-2012, 07:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
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In terms of volume what does this compare to? Also how does wot sound?
I haven't heard very many exhausts in person, so I can't provide meaningful comparisons. It really doesn't sound much quieter than a Remus Race that I heard a few weeks back. However, that owner was telling me that the Remus has highway drone. The Megan does not, so perhaps the Remus is a bit louder.

I seem to recall someone rating the Megan a 6.5 whereas the Eisenmann Race would be a 9 in terms of decibels.

WOT sounds fantastic inside and outside. Inside the cabin there's an awesome balance between engine and exhaust noise in the upper revs.
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      08-25-2012, 08:52 AM   #13
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Your write up is very well done and your sound bits are pretty accurate, however nothing beats listening in person. It's definitely louder than the stock mod with a considerably better sound thru the full rpm range. My oppinion is the Megan provides more of a muscle car (5.0 mustang) sound than an extotic.
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      08-25-2012, 09:32 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slapshot9 View Post
Your write up is very well done and your sound bits are pretty accurate, however nothing beats listening in person. It's definitely louder than the stock mod with a considerably better sound thru the full rpm range. My oppinion is the Megan provides more of a muscle car (5.0 mustang) sound than an extotic.
Thanks and agreed. It's muscle car and throaty down low. I'd say there is a bit of an exotic pitch in some areas though. I've heard sounds bounce off buildings, fences, etc. that don't sound mustang to me..
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      08-25-2012, 09:36 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slapshot9
Your write up is very well done and your sound bits are pretty accurate, however nothing beats listening in person. It's definitely louder than the stock mod with a considerably better sound thru the full rpm range. My oppinion is the Megan provides more of a muscle car (5.0 mustang) sound than an extotic.
Exactly. It's more of a muscle or NASCAR v8 sound. Many people tell me my car sounds like boat at the river.

I love my Megan!
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      08-25-2012, 11:32 AM   #16
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I have my exhaust mod done...I wonder if megans is louder? Has anyone compared before....
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      08-25-2012, 12:24 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qnzblacke90 View Post
I have my exhaust mod done...I wonder if megans is louder? Has anyone compared before....
I would be surprised if the Megan is not quite a bit louder.
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      08-25-2012, 12:28 PM   #18
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That was me who made the comparo to my previous Eisenmann race. The Megan is fantastic esp for the money when I had it.
Congrats! Def gets better with an x pipe too.
Cool, thanks. Did I remember your decibel ratings correctly?

I was contemplating the Eisenmann Race. If it is that much louder than the Megan I'm glad I didn't go that route. I'm pulling into work in neutral nowadays...
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      08-25-2012, 12:37 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LM3 View Post
I haven't heard very many exhausts in person, so I can't provide meaningful comparisons. It really doesn't sound much quieter than a Remus Race that I heard a few weeks back. However, that owner was telling me that the Remus has highway drone. The Megan does not, so perhaps the Remus is a bit louder.

I seem to recall someone rating the Megan a 6.5 whereas the Eisenmann Race would be a 9 in terms of decibels.

WOT sounds fantastic inside and outside. Inside the cabin there's an awesome balance between engine and exhaust noise in the upper revs.
thanks! also how big are the tips? i looked at the official info and it says 3'? that's stock stick tips aren't they
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      08-25-2012, 12:54 PM   #20
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Quote:
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thanks! also how big are the tips? i looked at the official info and it says 3'? that's stock stick tips aren't they
3" tips for the Megan sounds right. I'm not sure if the stock tips are as well. I feel like they're slightly smaller than that, or maybe it's just because the Megan has the straight cut tips vs rolled for the stock.

In any case, the Megan looks way better than the stock muffler, and the tips strike me as larger and more aggressive.
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      08-25-2012, 12:59 PM   #21
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Quote:
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3" tips for the Megan sounds right. I'm not sure if the stock tips are as well. I feel like they're slightly smaller than that, or maybe it's just because the Megan has the straight cut tips vs rolled for the stock.

In any case, the Megan looks way better than the stock muffler, and the tips strike me as larger and more aggressive.
that's what i like to hear!! pics came off as better looking than stock to me as well but when i saw that it was only 3' i was confused
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      08-25-2012, 01:06 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjd598 View Post
that's what i like to hear!! pics came off as better looking than stock to me as well but when i saw that it was only 3' i was confused
I'm away from the M, but next week I'll snap a pic of the entire back end and post. You'll get more perspective that way.
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