it all about?
in the U.S.A., it’s all about quality and performance. Having
cracked open the box, it was apparent that Bassani takes great
care in making sure their products are packed carefully, so they
get to their customers in one piece. It took about ten minutes
just to unpack it all, but that was a small price to pay, in our
pieces are heavy-gauge, polished stainless steel. In order for
the exhaust to work off-road, the muffler was built with a welded-on
skid plate, which we knew would come in handy on the trails, having
destroyed mufflers on other vehicles in the past.
they make it any easier to install?
don’t think so, although we had a muffler shop on stand-by.
The kit came with no instructions – seemingly for a reason.
We didn’t need them! Once it was all unpacked, we pieced
it together and laid it out on the trailer with the mounting brackets
in their respective positions. It was all there right down to
the last stainless steel U-bolt.
say we got lucky is an understatement. It just so happens the
brazing between our existing muffler and the catalytic converter
failed to adhere when the system was installed. What does that
mean? Once the mounting hardware was removed and the tail-pipe
was torched off, the muffler only took a few twists to reveal
a clean exit pipe off the cat for the new Xhaust muffler to attach
to. We can’t say you will be so fortunate when you install
yours, but one can hope.
the first U-bolt put together and slid onto the input pipe, the
muffler was twisted snuggly onto the output of the cat. The U-bolt
was clamped on, but only loosely to allow for later adjustment.
the other U-bolt was slid onto the tailpipe, which was threaded
through the suspension until it met the output of the muffler.
Again, the U-bolt was clamped down loosely.
for the tail-pipe fit perfectly in place of the stock mounting
hardware and was cinched down with the bolts from the kit. One
of us got underneath the muffler while the other maneuvered the
tail-pipe until it lined up with the hanger. Again, a perfect
fit as expected.
were cinched down and we were done!
to our ears
knowing anything about the product first-hand, one of the fears
we had was this setup was going to have our rig sounding like
an import boy-racer car. You know the type. The one which, with
a load is put on the squirrels sounds like a well-tuned weed eater.
All it took was a turn of the key and the spike in RPM as the
engine kicked on and all of our fears were gone. It was like being
in an opera as we listened to the pleasing resonance.
had my buddy jump into the driver’s seat of his stock TJ,
crank the engine and goose the throttle a few times while I recorded
the sound of the exhaust with the video camera. Honestly, a stock
TJ at the tail-pipe doesn’t sound too shabby. I had him
repeat the steps, but this time in my TJ with its newly-installed
vocal chords. The difference was astounding. It was easy to hear
the free-flowing difference.
time came to put a load on the engine to really hear the results.
We pulled the TJ out of the driveway and took off down the street.
Right away, the sound was different than before. When the engine
hit about 2000 RPM an ear-pleasing tone was emitted. We were happy.
As far as
performance was concerned, it was not immediately apparent and
that was expected. Being that the engine is computerized, we knew
that it would take a little time for the ECM to dial in. Also,
as with all new high-performance mufflers, this one needed to
be burned out. A couple of weeks later, the system began to show
its true shine. The tone got deeper and for a bit of a larger
We also noticed
a lack of the ever-so-slight hesitation that we used to experience
when stomping on the accelerator. The acceleration through the
power-bands is noticeable, as well. Now, a few months later, it’s
even better. We don’t make it a habit of monitoring fuel
economy since we are geared low and are running 35-inch tires,
but we believe if we did, however, a gain in MPG’s would
certainly be realized, albeit slight.