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Old 12-21-2010, 11:27 AM   #1
xluben
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Default xluben's Pictures and Review of the SPT Exhaust for the 2011 WRX 5 Door Hatch



2011 Subaru WRX 5 Door Hatch - SPT Exhaust Review

For 2011 the Subaru WRX received quad tip exhaust on both the sedan and hatchback. The sedan retains the two muffler setup that was used in the past, and simply adds dual tips out of each muffler. The hatch still has one, transversely mounted muffler (like last year), but it now has four tips instead of one! It looks identical to the previous years' STI hatch. I am not sure if the exhaust is actually the same (as the STI), but I wouldn't be surprised if it was.

The stock exhaust on the '11 WRX sedan is much louder than in past years. It has quad tips and looks/sound similar to SPT models of the past. The '11 WRX hatch has a much more subdued sound (than the sedan) with the stock exhaust. With stock exhaust, difference in sound between the sedan and hatch is readily apparent from both outside and inside the car. The '11 WRX 5 door does have quad tipped exhaust, but the style is the same as that of of the previous years' STI. Simple straight tubing peeking out from the bumper. No flared finishers like on the 4 door. I think the quad tips are a huge upgrade in looks from the single exhaust seen last year, but the sound is still very boring.

Photos of the stock exhaust can be seen below.

Stock - Rear 3/4



Stock - Rear



Stock - Close Up



The SPT exhaust for the 2011 WRX 5 door is now nearly identical to the STI SPT exhaust from previous years. While the stock exhaust has a sharp bend just after the rear exhaust pipe, and then does a full 180 degree turn before entering the side of the muffler, the SPT exhaust goes straight back from the midpipe (no resonator) into the front (long side) of the muffler. There are exits on either side of the muffler with quad tips. Photo of the exhaust layout can be seen below in the "Background Info" quoted text. The layout of the entry exit would imply that this is a "straight through" muffler (as opposed to the baffled muffler that is stock, and was used on the 08-10 WRX hatch SPT exhaust). (Note: I have no confirmation whether or not the muffler is truly straight through, or is in fact baffled in some manner.)

The SPT exhaust has very nice looking flared exits on the tips. They are not overly large, but fill the bumper cutouts nicely. I find that I like the look even better than that of the COBB or Perrin '11 hatch exhausts, which have a more OEM "cut pipe" look to them. The flared tips make the exhaust a little bit more visible on first glance. The only downside is that they get dirty very quickly, and then show it. If you keep the inside of the tips clean, they look great. If you don't the straight piping probably better. The price of the SPT exhaust may seem high (sticker price is just over $1,000), but if you compare it to the manufacturers listed above, the cost is very similar. Sure there are cheaper ones available, but the SPT is backed by Subaru, and the workmanship is very good.

Installation of the exhaust was not difficult. Two bolts were removed to disconnect the rear exhaust pipe from the midpipe. Then 5 hangers were removed (4 on the muffler, 1 on the midpipe), and then the exhaust was free to be removed. The same process was reversed for the installation. The car is only a couple weeks old, so the hangers were not stuck on too tightly. They were simply removed by hand, but some lubrication (ex. dish soap) or special tooling could have eased the installation even more. Doing the installation took well under an hour and it was my first time changing an exhaust. Here are some photos of what it will look like after it is installed:

SPT - Rear 3/4



SPT - Rear



SPT - Close Up



The change in sound is immediately apparent when you turn the car on.


A cat back exhaust of any kind isn't really a power adder on a WRX. The only real changes are sound and looks. As you can tell by the video and photos, this is a huge upgrade in both categories. The stock '11 WRX hatch has a really quiet stock exhaust. It sounds much like any economy car on the road With the SPT exhaust, the boxer rumble is released and it sounds great. It has a great sound while on the road and under load, but it is quiet enough that it doesn't get annoying on long trips and has very little drone on the highway. As far as aftermarket exhausts go, it is one of the quietest ones. The look of the quad, flared tips is great. I really like how they stand out, as long as you keep them clean. Overall, I'm extremely happy with the SPT exhaust. The change is just what I needed, without being overly loud for daily use.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Background Info
D441SFG000 - SPT Exhaust for 2008-2010 WRX 5 Door Hatchback

http://benjohnson.smugmug.com/photos...80_VUroN-M.jpg

D441SFG200 - SPT Exhaust for 2008-2011 WRX and STI 5 Door Hatchback

http://benjohnson.smugmug.com/photos...85_ktjFr-M.jpg

The entry/exit points lead me to believe the layout may be similar to these graphics from COBB Tuning:

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Old 12-26-2010, 07:36 PM   #2
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great review, thanks for this. Supremely jealous, that you 11'ers get the quad tips
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Old 12-26-2010, 09:10 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T///Mac325is View Post
great review, thanks for this. Supremely jealous, that you 11'ers get the quad tips
Thanks! I was beginning to wonder if anyone had even read this...
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Old 01-03-2011, 12:56 PM   #4
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i have a 2011 sti sedan and i think u have me sold on this exhaust. great review.
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:58 AM   #5
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Awesome. Glad you liked the review.
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Old 01-18-2011, 01:58 PM   #6
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Great review - did you notice any butt dyno changes?
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Old 01-18-2011, 02:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PinarelloRider View Post
Great review - did you notice any butt dyno changes?
Thanks. The cat back changes the sound of the car considerably, but it doesn't really make it any faster. A good Stage 1 tune (with or without a cat back) is what you really want if you're looking for a bit more power (without installing a downpipe and going to Stage 2).
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Old 02-02-2011, 03:41 AM   #8
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Thanks for the review! I'm strongly considering this on my '11. Love the sound!

Question: from your photos, it looks like the bend on the pipe just before it enters the muffler hangs down a bit compared to the stock exhaust; thus you've lost some ground clearance. This is unlikely to be an issue except perhaps when mudding or in deep snow, but can you confirm whether or not you've actually lost some clearance?

How hard is it to keep the tips free of soot?
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:46 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by extrachrispy View Post
Thanks for the review! I'm strongly considering this on my '11. Love the sound!

Question: from your photos, it looks like the bend on the pipe just before it enters the muffler hangs down a bit compared to the stock exhaust; thus you've lost some ground clearance. This is unlikely to be an issue except perhaps when mudding or in deep snow, but can you confirm whether or not you've actually lost some clearance?

How hard is it to keep the tips free of soot?
Good questions. The bend in the SPT exhaust does seem to become the lowest point on the car. I drive through a lot of snow in MN and haven't had a problem, yet. I haven't really done any off-roading, but would be worried about mud/dirt/large rocks/etc.

The tips get dirty very quickly. The flared tips look GREAT to me, so I think it is worth it. I have been cleaning them with carb cleaner and a paper towel. Takes about 5 min and then they look brand new. Only lasts a week or two looking new and then get dirtier and dirtier. I usually clean them again after a month or so.
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Old 03-23-2011, 01:28 PM   #10
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This was an excellent review and thank you for sharing this information. I just put a deposit down on my 2011 WRX (dark gray) and decided to add on the short shifter and SPT exhaust into the deal...

Heard great things about this exhaust and your review was very informative... I definitely do not regret getting the exhaust now (haven't seen my car yet).

PS - whoever took these photos did an excellent job! They look very professional.
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Old 03-23-2011, 01:42 PM   #11
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Thanks! I am glad you enjoyed the photos and the review. If it's not too late to change, I would suggest skipping the SPT short shifter and going with the MODE or Kartboy shifter and Kartboy bushings. The throws will be much, much shorter and more crisp than the SPT and the cost is much less.
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Old 03-24-2011, 01:07 PM   #12
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Thanks for the heads up on the shifter. Unfortunately, it is too late since I already contracted. I chose to do it in the deal because I don't know if I would ever get around to doing it later, and because the warranty won't be affected. If it is still not short enough I might consider changing it out later knowing the other options would provide a better solution. Now, if only Tuesday could just get here already!
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Old 03-24-2011, 01:14 PM   #13
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I don't think you'll be unhappy with it, but it provides minimal difference from stock, and the cost is 2-3x as much as an aftermarket short shifter. If you've already got it on order I would just enjoy it for now and decide later if you want to do further upgrades.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:48 PM   #14
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I absolutly love my SPT Exhaust sound.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:29 PM   #15
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Is this exhaust 3 inches throughout or 2.5 mid pipe like the older ones? Also can anyone compare it to the CNT and the P and L as far as performance, sound and droneyness. Thank you!
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Old 02-01-2012, 10:58 PM   #16
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I'll answer up since I have this on my '11 hatch.

The SPT does in fact taper to 2.5" so it is not a true and full 3" system. Unless you are looking at making significant gains, professionals will argue the 2.5" taper really won't make that big of difference in performance under almost all circumstances.

As far as sound, I do really like mine as a daily driver. I have not heard the CNT or P&L in person, but I would rank the SPT on the more conservative side, with the likes of the Invidia Q300. I actually had an STI owner tell me my SPT sounds way better than his Q300, as it was a deeper and more full tone with no rasp. I can tell you the SPT has a way of sounding much more tame inside the car (which is a good thing) than outside the car. Coming from louder systems, I have been contemplating trying out a system such as the CNT, but I would be doing so at the expense of sacrificing quality. The SPT is a truly sound system as it blends a very tasteful (and still noticeable) tone with an upscale style.

Great write-up, OP.
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Old 02-09-2012, 12:47 PM   #17
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good stuff!
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Old 02-09-2012, 03:03 PM   #18
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OP. Did you end up selling the SPT to move to the Q300 + DP? Reason I ask is because I saw your other youtube video. Was there a reason you ditched the SPT for the Q300? Interested as I am in the same boat now and am trying to make a decision.
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Old 02-10-2012, 09:07 AM   #19
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Yes, I did. I decided I wanted to go to a full 3" catless setup in preparation for the new turbo. When I made the swap I was still on the stock turbo, with E85, making close to 350WHP. I did not see any measurable change in power after switching to the Q300 and catless downpipe, and I actually think the SPT exhaust sounds better. It is all preference, but I don't see any reason that someone wouldn't be happy with the SPT, and I don't think it is a restriction unless you're going for huge power.
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:30 PM   #20
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Nice Review! Thanks!!
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Old 05-27-2012, 09:15 PM   #21
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Well, now I've come full circle (and I'm actually circling back around again!). Here's a list of the exhausts I've had:
  1. Stock
  2. SPT
  3. Invidia Q300
  4. Stock
  5. Tsudo Quad Tip
  6. Stock
  7. SPT
Along that way many other things have changed. I'm currently at 460WHP, and I've found that the cat back seems to have little to no effect on power. BUT it should be noted that I do have an EWG, so that helps a lot with exhaust flow on the top end. Since exhausts didn't change the power much in my setup, it came down to sound and looks. I thought the Q300 sounded pretty good, but with a baby on the way, my wife though it was too loud. Mainly the highway drone was too much. I sold/traded it for a stock exhaust. The car made 462WHP / 492WTQ with the stock cat back!

I wanted a little more rumble (and always had it in the back of my mind that the cat back could hurt my power a tiny bit), so I got the Tsudo quad tip. It's 3" like the Q300 and sounds similar, but the Tsudo is a bit quieter. It was still too loud though. I only had it on for a day or two! I went back to stock again, but I still wanted something with a little more sound, freer flow, and hopefully better looks. The single wall straight cut tips aren't that great to look at. I really didn't mine the sound (or lack there of) from the stock exhaust. I like being quiet, but I wasn't a fan of the plain/cheap looking exhaust tips.

An SPT came up for sale locally so I got it. The looks are great, and the sound is really nice. It has a very low tone compared to the Q300 or Tsudo. Also, unlike those two it has no drone! The Q300 was very tiring on the highway. The SPT is great! The flared tips are the way to go, IMO. Giant 4" tips like the Q300 look pretty good, but I really love the flare on the SPT. The Tsudo had flared tips, but they didn't look as nice. I think the nice rounded flare like on the SPT (and Nameless and Greddy) look the best. The sound of the SPT is also quiet nice. It's definitely on the quieter side of things, especially at idle, but it really has a nice deep tone when you get on it. I'm really happy to have the SPT on my car again. It cleans up the look and adds a little bit of mean sound back in (when I want it).

Here are some video's from my exhaust switching:

Stock vs. SPT

Invidia Q300

Stock

Tsudo Quad Tip
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:14 AM   #22
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Here's a new photo with the SPT exhaust on:

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Old 08-03-2012, 06:48 PM   #23
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I used to live in New Brighton when I was in grad school. I really enjoyed driving in MN. It was like the canyons of SoCal but at 25 instead of higher speeds and snow was more forgiving than rock.

Just got my 12 sti Tuesday and have the spt exhaust coming on Monday. Your review affirmed my decision - nice job
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Old 08-06-2012, 02:24 PM   #24
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Well, that's (basically) where I live! I need to know where these fun roads are! I don't seem to find any around me
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Old 11-03-2012, 12:46 PM   #25
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oh man, i just installed the Invidia Q300 cat back on mine and it is loud. holy crap.

i have a Cobb Catted Downpipe mated to it. i'm thinking maybe the SPT will be the way to go.
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