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Cougar Support Group - Modifications



  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    Borla has been around for years and is considered one of the industries best manufacturers of performance exhaust systems. Personally I like their systems for the following reasons:
    - Quality materials
    - Life time warranty
    - Appearance
    - Sound
    - Performance figures (for all cars)

    The price is kind of high, but if I was going to change the stock system, I would go with Borla.
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Thanks for the response guys. I found a place that sells the Borla Dual Outlet with Carbon fiber tips for $600. I'm gonna try and search other places but from what I've seen, that's not too bad of a deal. They can also do the installation, at an added cost of course! = )

    The guy I talked to on the phone told me that the Borla sounds great and it's of great quality, but he told me that I would NOT see a great performance gain (he said about 6 hp), that it was more of a better feeling that you get knowing the car can growl like that. Which is probably true, because otherwise people would be buying them nonstop. I think it would sound great, and hopefully not have that droning (and very annoying) sound that I've heard on other systems (modified Civics). What do u guys think?

    Also, on their site I saw a "Y-Pipe" for the Cougar/contour. What do you guys think of that "Y-Pipe" thing? What does it do? Do you guys really think it adds that much horsepower to the car? Let me know what you guys think on this. Thanks again!

    They are located in MD. So I wouldn't have to pay for shipping!!!! = )
  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    Did you get the Borla information from SP Motorsports? If so, I personally don't care for their information. Although their staff is very friendly and helpful, they tried to sell me a strut tower brace. I did some investigation and I found out that the part they were pushing would have eventually damaged my struts and other front end parts. Be very careful when dealing with them. Do you homework and know what you are getting yourself in to.

    IMHO the Borla cat-back combined with the KKM intake system should produce more than 6 HP. Even if it only adds 5% to the car, that will add 8.5 horses. The average figures I have heard are an average from 10-15 hp at different points in the power band.
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Thanks Badulah!!!

    I'll keep researching then, but I'm pretty sure that I will go with the Borla, I just need a place where I can get it for a reasonable price and somewhere to install it.

    But what do you think of the "Y-Pipe"? Have you heard anything about this part for the kitty, because I have not heard too many people on here mention it, I think only one person has mentioned it before.

    My currenty Kitty is doing pretty well, and I'd like to modify it's performance (specially add a bit more pep to it)a bit, rather than the looks of the car, but that's just my personal preference.

    Let me know what you or other guys think. Thanks guys.
  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    Where did you get your Borla info?
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    I've been pretty much looking up at a bunch of sites that are mentioned on here, on, on CSG, and other places. And if it sounds like I know nothing about cars it is because that's correct! I know nothing about cars so I'm just trying to evaluate my options and hopefully arrive to a correct decision. This Topic and other Cougar sites are my main source of info since but I still see lots of mixed reviews/feelings.

    Sorry if I sounded like I'm asking the same thing over and over again. = )
  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    No it's okay, feel free to ask anything about cars.

    Here is my advice:
    Go with the Borla dual muffler cat-back system. This is the best system on the market for the Cat and I don't think you can go wrong with it. I plan on getting it sometime in the early summer.

    I would have gotten it this week, but I went berzerk and bought a new home theater system. It took me a few days to decide, Borla or Home theater? It was a hard choice, but I had some help (Thanks Skip G. and StageLeft!!).
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Hey Badulah,

    Have you ever seen that awesome car-chasing scene in the movie Ronin? It's awesome.....and with a great home theater system, it's almost like if you're driving the cars!!! = )

    But I would still go with the Borla. I would rather drive on a great sunny day and listen to the kitty then watch TV.
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Do you guys know why it is illegal to replace the Y-Pipe in new or fairly new cars? I believe you can replace it only after 50K miles! If that's the case, why do some shops offer this for the Cougar(they say it is for street-use)?
  • catscratchcatscratch Posts: 34
    Does anyone know the life of the borla muffler? I assume it would be about the same(maybe less) than the stock/average muffler....

    For its $699 retail price, you'd think they'd kick in lifetime replacement on the muffler itself...

    I'm just curious is all. I'm set on borla as my prospective exhaust mod...

    now, if I could just go into hibernation for the next 34 days! This waitin' business is for the birds....but that's the price one pays to order a vehicle. Ok, I'll stop complaining now =)

  • stageleftstageleft Posts: 391
    One Million Miles! [holds pinky up to mouth ala, Dr. Evil]

    (At least that's the warrantee length, so if it does go bad, it's like getting a new one.)
  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    Normally I would agree with you, but after viewing my new home theater system this weekend, I have no regrets what so ever about the choice I made. A flat screen TV, DVD player, and a Dolby 5 speaker surround system truly makes viewing movies at home a totally different experience.

    I'll get the Borla and the MAF later on in the mid summer.
  • esbrockesbrock Posts: 88
    I installed the Pacesetter cat-back exhaust on my cougar last thursday. After driving around town this past weekend, I would definately give it two thumbs up. The sound is great, the dual tips look great, and the performance increase is noticeable. I'm not saying that is adds major horsepower or anything like that (I'm looking into getting it dyno tested). It does seem to accelerate alot easier, and passing on the highway is where I notice the most change. All in all, I think I found a nice alternative to the Borla system.
  • stageleftstageleft Posts: 391
    What was the price on that Pacesetter, esbrock? Just so we can keep track of alternative performance parts ...
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Hey esbrock,

    What made you decide to go for the Pacesetter? Seems like you liked it, I guess is not as bad as people say. What's the warranty on it? You think you can give us some more info on the sound it makes and performance (if any)? I'm looking into also replacing the exhaust in my Cougar but not sure yet what I want to go for yet. I know the Borla has a great reputation but also it's price nothing to play around with! = ) So please let us know. Thanks = )
  • esbrockesbrock Posts: 88
    The main reason why I went with the Pacesetter was the price. If you order it directly from the manufacturer, it is priced at $249.00. Summit Racing sells it for $174.00. NOPI sells it for $149.00. As you can deduce, I ordered it from NOPI. I figured if it didn't perform right, it was no big loss. The system is constructed out of aluminzied steel instead of stainless. That is why it is so much cheaper than the Borla sytem. It uses one muffler placed where the factory resonator was located, and has two 3.5 inch chrome pencil-rolled monza tips. The pipe is 2.5 inch diameter with mandrel bends. I am not real sure about warranty length. I was so excited to get the thing that I didn't read the warranty sheet. I can't quote performance numbers either. I do notice it allows the car the rev up more freely and there is a feeling of some horsepower boost in the mid to high rev range. The sound is definately addictive. Makes the car sound like it has a V-8. Doesn't sound buzzy like the little imports. I do have the KKM intake installed and that may be why I notice a more significant power increase.

    Living in San Antonio, there wasn't a need for a stainless steel exhaust. They never salt the roads here and we dont have to deal with any salt air like coastal areas. I figure if the system lasts 4 to 5 years, it will have been worth it. If it doesn't, I can always purchase the Borla system later.
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Thanks esbrock! It sounds like a good alternative if people don't want to or don't have enough to spend on the Borla, but not the same quality of course! But if the cash is not there, the Pacesetter is a plus, and I guess it also depends on how long you plan to keep the kitty I guess. I'm really debating whether to get the Pacesetter, although I'm not sure what it sounds like (only the way it looks, and it looks good), or to get the Borla, which is like 3 times as much, but much better quality.

    Are the tips yellow inside? How long do you think that paint will last? Let me know how it's going so far. Thanks.
  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    the previous message was sponsored by your local Town Hall wandering salesmen.

    Thank you, drive through.
  • bobschmbobschm Posts: 42
    According to the Pacesetter site, limited warranty is 3 years. Not bad.

    One thing, though. Neither they nor NOPI list the Cougar that I can find. What model number did you buy, esbrock? Are they painted black like the pictures?
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140

    On NOPIs site, you have to look up the 1999 Mercury Cougar, not the 2000. Then the Pacesetter will show up. I emailed them and they told me that they are selling it for $147. At that price, I'm seriously considering it, I figured that if it sucks, at least I won't lose that much. The Borla looks great, but boy, it's expensive!

    Hey, esbrock, are you gonna give us an update on how the Pacesetter is doing is doing on your kitty??? = )
  • bobschmbobschm Posts: 42
    $147 for an cat back is not bad.

    Next question: Is it in enough pieces so it can be installed on jackstands in the driveway? or do you need welding, cutting, air tools, grunting, skinned knuckles, and multiple curse words?
  • esbrockesbrock Posts: 88
    As of May 30th, I still feel like I made the right choice in buying the Pacesetter. It sounds great and draws that much more attention to my Kitty. The last seal of approval came when my mother-in-law thought it was "too loud". I love driving on the highway now, that's where you feel the performance boost the most. The car just seems more eager to be revved up.

    147 DOLLARS!!!!! That's two dollars cheaper than when I bought it. One word of advice, when dealing with NOPI, keep on them about your order. It took them a week to ship my order out. When I would call seeking a UPS tracking number, they would keep telling me that it was scheduled to ship the next day. At such a great price, I didn't make too much noise though.

    Installation was somewhat easy. The system comes in four pieces. The pipes are painted black. The only tools you will need are a rachet set and maybe a coulpe of box wrenches. I installed mine in my driveway with the car sitting on jack stands. It took me 3.5 hours total, from pulling the car out of the garage to pulling it back in, to install it by myself. If I would have had an extra pair of hands and read the instructions properly, I would have probably trimmed that down to 2 hours. No special tools needed but I did include alot of grunting, a couple skinned knuckles, and several curse words. I feel shedding a little blood, sweat, and tears for my Cougar just makes the bond that much stronger.
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Hey esbrock,

    Thanks for the update! Is there a lot of droning at highway speeds with the Pacesetter? Say you're going 65-75 mph, how's the soundlevel, does take over the car's stereo? Thanks.
  • esbrockesbrock Posts: 88
    You can hear it but it's not that loud. It won't over take my stereo, but I don't have the factory head unit anymore. If you only have the 5W per channel factory CD unit, it maybe a problem. I wouldn't think so but I'm not sure.
  • cocheezcocheez Posts: 11
    If you guys want to check performance improvements and want to check horsepower at the wheels before and after a mod, you can use a little gadget that looks like a radar detector. It can calculate 0-60 and quarter mile times. It's pretty cool. Here's the website
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    I have never had a problem with my stock radio. Many have bashed it in the past but I think is sounds fine. I also have never had problems with the road noise overtaking the stereo.
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    You also have the Pacesetter, fish8? For how long? How is it holding up so far, a good buy? Thanks.
  • stageleftstageleft Posts: 391
    Yeah, those G-Tech's are pretty neat, but I don't have a 1/4 mile strip anywhere between two traffic lights where I can get a running start (w/o cops everywhere, anyway). Neat little tool though ...


    I've never had a problem with my stock unit, either (as far as sound quality and noise level go), but then again, I didn't deafen myself in the early '90's by playing my headphones too loud, either ... :^)

    Besides [puts on pompous aire], I have the PREMIUM stereo, FMC told me so!
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    No Pacesetter here. I was just talking about the noise level with the stock exaust. Sorry for the confusion. Also, my car before this was a Jeep Wrangler so the noise level in my Cat is almost non existent compatered to the Jeep.
  • badulahbadulah Posts: 961
    Since this system is not stainless, I have heard that it will crack and scale over time from the heat it generates. I had an inexpensive system put on my Camaro that fell off because of this after a few months.
This discussion has been closed.