What do you get when you add one part exhaust, one part air intake, and one part programmer to a brand-new Chevy truck? You get better mileage, more power, and a truck that will walk away from your next-door neighbor's stock rig. The new Chevy truck features redesigned sheetmetal and new interior goodies, and under the hood you'll find a 4.8L, 5.3L, or 6.0L powerplant. In stock trim, the truck has good power on tap but not nearly enough to keep our heavy right foot happy.

With the way gas prices keep going up, we were a little hesitant to modify the truck and lower the fuel efficiency, but luckily the aftermarket industry has that in mind and does its best to not mess up the mpg. In fact, once all of the parts were installed on our '08 5.3L-equipped Silverado, we netted a 2.2 gain in the mpg area on the 87-octane tune and a 1.5 gain on the 91 tune. Not bad considering we got added horsepower, a better exhaust note, and a tool to adjust all kinds of stuff on the truck as well.

Now we didn't just take a shot in the dark and get lucky, we picked up parts from companies we know produce power. We have used K&N, Hypertech, and Gibson before with great results, and this time was no different. To make getting the parts simpler, we logged on to Stylin' Trucks' website and entered the year, make, and model of our ride, and every available part Stylin' offers for it popped up. After narrowing it down to the companies we wanted, we were given the part numbers we needed. At the time, Stylin' was running a special on the Gibson exhaust system so we saved some money. It just goes to show that a computer can be a great money-saving tool. After we waited a few days, a couple of boxes showed up on our doorstep that we tore into like a kid at Christmas.

Because we ordered a Gibson system and the company happens to be in our backyard, we drove over to have one of the company's technicians install the parts and run the Chevy on the dyno to see the results. Every part that was bolted on is covered by a manufacturer's warranty and netted us more power and better mileage.

Our Guinea Pig:'08 Chevy Silverado
After the parts were installed, our Chevy Silverado showed a gain of 15 hp right off the bat. After we left Gibson, we topped off the tank and wrote down the mileage on the OD. After burning almost the whole tank, we filled it back up and did the math and found we went from getting 15.5 to 17 mpg on the 91-octane tune and even more on the 87 tune!

Ingredient One: The Exhaust
This is Gibson's Dual Sport exhaust system for the Silverado. Since the truck is used for towing on the weekends, the side exit location should keep the trailer clean. We decided on the aluminized system because it was on sale, but there is also a stainless steel version for even longer life. The system is constructed out of mandrel-bent tubing that maintains a consistent size even through the bends for improved exhaust flow and better efficiency. New to the Gibson lineup is the Superflow muffler, which is fully welded, baffled, and chambered for better volume efficiency and unrestricted flow. The system also has zinc-plated, factory-style hangers and highly polished, T304 stainless steel clampless slash tips for easy installation and good looks.

Ingredient Two:A Pinch Of Cold Air
K&N 77 Series metal intake kits combine performance and underhood style in one package. The 77 virtually eliminates restriction in the intake air path thanks to the mandrel-bent tube, and the oversize High-Flow conical air filter provides increased surface area and dust capacity. To maintain cool air entering the engine, the kit also comes with a heat shield that seals against the hood to isolate the air intake from engine heat. Unlike other K&N kits, the 77 Series is designed to add flash under the hood with polished-aluminum or gun-metal gray powdercoat finishes.

Ingredient Three: The Tune
The Max Energy Power Programmer from Hypertech is like a little magic box that extracts every bit of energy possible and allows us to tweak the truck to our liking. This unit is a plug-and-play-type install and will let us raise the top-speed limiter, raise the engine rpm "rev" limiter, change transmission shift points, increase transmission shift firmness, and correct the speedo for tire and gear changes. The programmer also displays and clears diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs), and best of all it gives us premium- and regular-fuel power-tuning options.

The Final Word
After the parts were on the truck, we got 2.2 additional miles per gallon and the satisfaction of knowing we could pull away from a stock truck. Leaving tire tracks and passing the pump are two excellent benefits to be gained from this combo of modifications.

SOURCE
Gibson Performance Exhaust
3780 Prospect Ave.
Yorba Linda
CA  92686
714-528-3044
www.gibsonperformance.com
Stylin' Trucks
800-586-9713
www.stylintrucks.com
  • «
  • |
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • View Full Article