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[REVIEW]Litespeed Racing Stainless Steel CBE

Yesterday I finally installed the Litespeed Racing SS CBE on my car. Since then I have driven about 500 miles. This is the site: Litespeed Racing The stainless steel version

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Old 08-26-2012, 03:12 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default [REVIEW]Litespeed Racing Stainless Steel CBE

Yesterday I finally installed the Litespeed Racing SS CBE on my car. Since then I have driven about 500 miles.

This is the site: Litespeed Racing

The stainless steel version isn't listed but it's an option for those (like me) who don't want to shell out over $2000, which tbh isn't bad for a titanium exhaust.

Specs:

Weight=~38 lbs. I didn't weight it personally but it's believable just going by how the exhaust feels vs the stock one. This makes it the lightest steel dual cbe, lighter than CF FI by a few lbs. Honestly I don't think it's close enough of a difference to tell.

Piping is 2.5" in the Y-pipe to 3" collector, then back to 2.5" through to the back. The Y pipe has a resonator, and there seem to be 2 12" resonators on the midpipe section. The titanium tips are slip on, as well as the carbon fiber tips. In one box came the y-pipe-back exhaust section, with titanium tips already on the pipes and a set of carbon fiber tips (optional). It also came with 2 gaskets and some bolts. Another box has the Y-pipe.

Now, onto my thoughts:

Material quality:
The Y-pipe was made differently from the rest, it was fully polished while the other sections were brushed looking. This was probably due to the Y-pipe being in a different batch. I don't know welds much, but they look very good and even. Titanium tips were well finished and burnt. The carbon fiber tips are dry CF, and damn, they are light. I'd say they are less than half the weight of the titanium ones. Weave is pretty even, but there are a couple of lines in the resin and it's easy to see where the cf sheets overlap. The inside isn't finished either, but the outside looks great.

Sound:
I was surprised by how this sounded in person. I haven't heard any other 370Z exhaust irl so I can't really compare it to anything, but it was louder than the exhaust on the 650-hp GT-R that was also at the shop. Cold startup was extremely aggressive.

At first, there was a lot of drone driving around, which was annoying, but thankfully after a few miles it quickly died down. Every time I started the car up again, the drone got less and less, and now it's very little. This is the first aftermarket exhaust I've put on any car, and I didn't know that break-in was this dramatic.
I've yet to measure the db output.

The sound is great. It has a very rich howl up to around 4.5-5k rpm where it closes into a more focused sound till redline.
On the off-throttle, I can hear small amounts of burble coming from the exhaust. Subtle but very addictive.
I only have a couple of videos right now and they were taken early in the break in stage, but I'll upload them to youtube and post them here soon. Eventually I'll record one after break-in. These will all be done with an iPhone 4 (sorry, I don't have anything else).

Power:
I already had a CAI installed, but I can confidently say that the exhaust at the very least did not lose any power for me. I don't have access to a dyno around here, but Litespeed racing posted gains of around 15 hp on the Nismo. My butt dyno isn't very accurate and I feel like a the increased sound really skews my perception of speed. There should be decent gain from the Y-pipe change though; the stock y-pip inlets are PUNY.

Installation and fit:
The install was going very well until placing on the rear sections. On the passenger side of the car is a black metal box covering some cables. The exhaust ran into it, preventing it from going onto the hanger. Fortunately, it came off with 3 screws and I honestly don't think that it's a problem to leave it off, since the cables already have heavy wrapping it seemed. I might go back eventually and cover it with something.

The y-pipe fit perfectly and the mid pipes fit perfectly. Even after removing the cover on the rear though, the tip alignment was very off. The passenger side initially sat very low, about 1" lower than stock, while the driver side sat maybe 1/4" higher than stock. We couldn't figure out any way to make it work without bending stuff, so we ended up bending the hangers up and down respectively, which got the exhaust to sit well centered.

The exhaust clears all the braces with several millimeters left to go on the closes bend, the one in the back. No leaks. There was initially a rattle caused by my spare tire, but tightening the screw down on the sub solved that.

Also, clearance is great. Since there aren't any canisters in the rear and the ones in the front aren't very thick, the exhaust doesn't seem to sit any lower than stock.

Service/response:
I have a feeling that Patrick@Litespeed is the only one taking care of the manufacturing and it isn't a full-time job for him. With that in mind, his response time to questions and the sale wasn't horrible. I can't honestly say that it was painless either though. It sometimes took him several days to reply to an email, and between payment and shipping took about a week. Delivery took almost an additional week, from CA to Knoxville, TN.

Everything took longer than I had hoped, which is why I write this review now, in Nashville, as opposed to a couple weeks ago in Knoxville, where I could have taking it on more aggressive roads.

Packaging:

The exhausts came without a scratch although the box for the Y-pipe was rather beat up by the time it got into my hands (FedEx was probably to blame for that one). The y-pipe was wrapped in foam sheets and bubble wrap.
The rest of the exhaust was wrapped with plastic film around the canisters and the tips as well as bubble/plastic wrap. The whole thing was on top of a dense foam mat. Since there weren't any dents or scratches, I can't complain about it.

Overall, I'd rate the exhaust very well. It's definitely on the loud side, and a great value.

I'm down for any questions about the exhaust, although it may take me a while to respond since I have a lot of school work piled up, since I spent a big part of my weekend with this.

Pics and vids (coming soon) in the next post.
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Old 08-26-2012, 03:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Post reserved for pics and video

Upload is taking ridiculously long, and I need to sleep, so I'll finish the pics up tomorrow while I do work.
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Last edited by DarkJak; 08-26-2012 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 08-26-2012, 03:28 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Litespeed Racing SS CBE Launch and Downshifting - YouTube
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Sounds great... seems aggressive, but very tolerable.
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Old 09-08-2012, 03:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The exhaust sounds great. The full titanium sounds even better!
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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What price range is the SS version of this. It's sounds amazing.
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Old 09-09-2012, 10:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Oh yeah, the titanium has a bit more of that exotic tone to it, but it was 2x as expensive and out of my price range.

I got it for around $1200, YMMV.

I took it down a local road a few days ago. In cabin sound while pushing hard is glorious I was also driving around a senior as he liked my car, but was critical of the 7AT not being fun. The experience as a whole changed his mind pretty fast.

Next time I go for a drive, I'll record in-cabin for you guys.

EDIT: Just uploaded a different video I took that day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1rBj...ature=youtu.be

Last edited by DarkJak; 09-11-2012 at 01:27 AM.
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Old 10-06-2012, 11:07 PM   #8 (permalink)
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370Z Litespeed Racing SS CBE: In-cabin recording - YouTube!

In-cabin vid

Didn't really have a good way to keep the camera pointed at the tachometer, even with the help of a friend.
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Old 10-08-2012, 11:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Not too thread jack, but how difficult was it changing your lights in the gauges?

Exhaust sounds great btw
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Old 10-08-2012, 09:51 PM   #10 (permalink)
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That might just be the camera, i haven't changed any of my gauge lights since I got the car.
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Old 10-12-2012, 11:00 PM   #11 (permalink)
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any pics of how the exhaust fits in the undercarriage.....really digging this exhaust but since i have my car on coils exhaust options are limited.
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Old 10-13-2012, 03:07 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I'll take pics next time I get to the car, hopefully will remember a ruler too. It doesn't seem low to me, but I'm only on Swifts, which is just a 1-1.25" drop.
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