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How to Convert a V6 Mustang to Dual Exhaust

Written By: Andrew Cilio

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Dual exhaust is not only beneficial to the V8 guys; the 6-cylinder Mustangs see a sizable performance gain from converting the restrictive stock, single exhaust into a true dual setup.

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The best way to describe a V6 Mustang's exhaust is restrictive. Converting to dual exhaust improves air flow, horsepower, and gas mileage while giving you a deeper tone.

American Muscle

The V6 System in a Nutshell

Let's consider just how restrictive the V6 system is. Gases leave the engine through the two exhast manifolds, but get slowed down after the catalytic convertors. the gases are then forced through a single pipe to pass through the muffler and out of the tailpipe. Looking at it like this makes it easy to see why the V6 setup restricts air flow and limits power.

It has been said that there are two ways to convert your V6 exhaust--the right way and the wrong way. While we agree that there is the easy way and the hard way, we think it is better to give you all the information and let you decide what is right for your V6. That being said, here are the two ways you can convert your V6 Mustang to a dual exhaust.

  • To switch to a dual exhaust setup, you'll need to replace the restrictive factory Y-pipe with either an X-pipe or H-pipe
  • Moving up to a dual exhaust will flow the exhaust gasses more efficiently, giving the car a boost in power
  • Depending on which dual exhaust kit you choose, the sound of your V6's exhaust can be fine-tuned to sound much more aggressive and throaty
2005 V6 Mustang with a Y-Pipe

Use a V6 Mustang Dual Exhaust Adapter Kit

Using a dual exhaust adapter kit requires cutting your Y-Pipe right after the catalytic converters and welding the adapter into place. The adapter acts as a splitter, allowing you to bolt any GT catback for your year Mustang right up to it, giving you the look of a true dual exhaust.

The downside to this is that using this kit does not actually give you a true dual exhaust. It gives you the look and sound of a GT exhaust, but you will only see minor performance gains. The 1994-1998 conversion kit is slightly different than the 1999-2004 kit, so be sure to select the kit that’s built for your car.

Cost of Installation

If you are of the DIY mindset, then your cost of installation is going to be the price of the kit plus 2-4 hours of your afternoon (pending you have all of the tools you need).

However, if you are looking to leave it to a professional, you are looking at the price of the kit and an install cost that can range from as low as $150-$450 depending upon the shop. Shop costs and labor rates vary from shop to shop, so it may be a good idea to call the shop you are thinking of using and seeing what they charge.

Mustang Dual Exhaust Setup

Use a V6 Mustang H-Pipe or X-Pipe

The second option is to use a V6-specific mid-pipe. Designed to eliminate the single-pipe design of the factory Y-Pipe, these bolt right up to the factory manifolds and give you a true dual exhaust. With this option, you can use any GT catback for your year Mustang.

Because this conversion gives you a true dual exhaust, you will have noticeable performance gains. Your Mustang will be able to support more horsepower, though how much of a horsepower gain you will see depends on whether you keep your cats or go for an off-road set-up.

Of the two options, this is the easiest. There is no precision cutting or welding, and it can be done by anyone with basic tools and knowledge.

Note: recommends professional installation of all exhaust parts. 

V6 Mustang with an Aftermarket Mid-Pipe

Other V6 Mustang Dual Exhaust Recommendations

If you have a stock V6, there are a few things we recommend to keep you from losing low-end torque and having a sluggish car.

1. Get a mid-pipe with catalytic converters. True, you won't see as much of a horsepower gain but, using a mid-pipe with cats creates enough backpressure to keep your low-end torque drivable.

2. Use a Chambered Muffler (such as Magnaflow, Steeda, Pypes), instead of a straight-through muffler.

Note: If you really want to use an off-road mid-pipe on a stock car, switch to steeper gears (4.10s or higher). This will get you into your power band faster, and the low-end torque difference will be less noticeable.

TIP: If your V6 has forced induction or nitrous, it is okay to use a straight-through muffler and an off-road mid-pipe.

Mustang Magnaflow Duel Tipped, Blacked Out Muffler

Do I Need a Tune for Dual Exhaust?

While a tune certainly helps the drivability, it is not necessary unless your dual exhaust is manipulating your catalytic converters or converting to long tube headers. If for the catalytic converters, a simple handheld tuner can turn off the rear o2 sensors to turn off the check engine light.

Can You Interchange a V6 & GT Mustang Exhaust?

There are certain ways to allow GT exhaust to be utilized on a V6 Mustang. The primary difference is pipe diameter and the dual exhaust on a GT vs the single exhaust on a V6. There are a couple of options V6 owners can look at here.

1) Get a mid pipe (X or H) and utilize a GT catback.

2) A midpipe, GT over axle pipes, and GT axlebacks. These changes will allow for proper fitment of a GT exhaust onto a V6 Mustang.

Both options require either cutting or slight modification of the rear bumper and a set of exhaust hangers for the added side of the exhaust.

Adjusting Your Mustang's Rear Valance

There are two options that one can choose from.

1) Cut the current valence in order to accommodate the second pipe. This is pretty straight forward and most kits come with a template. However, one has to be careful in order not to cut in an improper way.

2) Purchase a GT rear bumper and install that onto the rear end. That would give the second cut out that matches on both sides and allows for the proper fitment of the second pipe as well.

Fitment includes: 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, V6