Review & Install Video
Hey guys. Adam here with americanmuscle.com. And today, we're taking a closer look at and installing the C&L Street Cold Air Intake with the 95-Millimeter MAF housing, available for all '11 to '14 Mustang GTs. You should be checking this out if you're in the market for a cold air intake to replace your restrictive factory air box that really isn't producing the power you want and also doesn't have that superior aftermarket filter. This option here is not only gonna help your engine breathe a lot better, you're also gonna get slightly better throttle response and acceleration as well as a small bump in horsepower and torque with a no-tune required intake with the option to add a custom tune to really maximize its gains. What I mean by that is C&L's intake here is a little more unique in the sense that it has this insert tube, this optional insert tube in the MAF housing. Without that insert tube, you got a 95 millimeter MAF housing that requires a tune to really boost that power. But if you don't really want to pick up a custom tune right out of the box, insert that tubing and it's a no-tune required intake. So really it has the versatility to go both ways. If you order this guy, you're not really looking to spend the bucks on that tune at first, insert the tube. If you want to pick one up in the future, take it out and you can really boost the power. As a matter of fact, C&L lets us know without that insert here and a custom tune paired, you can expect gains of up to 57 horsepower and torque under the curve, which is very impressive. As a matter of fact, I'll touch on that a little bit later on but know that we did dyno this in the past and walked away with pick 20 horsepower and we did see 57 horse and torque under the curve. So really you get a lot here when you maximize it. Without that, however you are still getting something that is a big upgrade over stock. You have a larger tubing here, rotomolded plastic along with the rotomolded plastic heat shield with that weatherstripping to seal in under the hood blocking out a little bit of that extra engine bay heat. The filter here is however the star of the show, it's a big upgraded, washable, reusable oiled filter, large conical filter, cotton gauze, it's gonna do a lot better at pulling in more cold air and filtering out all the unwanted particles. This is also gonna reuse the factory air duct pulling in air from your front grille. I'm actually kind of a big fan of the way it reuses that. This heat shield here just hugs around and just tucks that duct right inside of the heat shield, so all of that air is literally shooting straight into your filter. I think it's optimizing the use of that functional air duct from the factory more so than the factory one did. So I really liked the way it integrates that. Aside from that, guys, you're gonna reuse your factory MAF sensor, the kit here comes with everything else that you need to get the job done. Manual transmissions and automatic transmissions have a slightly different install process. The manual guys have two hoses to connect to the tubing, automatic guys have three hoses connected to the tubing. I will say automatic transmission, guys, where that third tubing would go right in the middle, you may have to do some drilling just to open up that hole, ours was closed off out of the box. So if you have the auto, may need to drill that open to install one of the new fittings, but either way, it's still very, very simple and I'll explain that a little bit later on. For this kit, you can pick it up for just about 350 bucks. Install is gonna get one out of three wrenches on our difficulty meter whether you're using that tubing or you're not using the optional tubing insert for the tune or no-tune required. Now I'm gonna walk you through every single step of the process here. It'll take you about an hour from start to finish. Cold air intakes are one of the easiest possible things you can do under the hood, it is so simple. I'll walk you through it all. Let's get to it. Tools used in this install include an impact gun, couple of extensions, 8, 10 and 13-millimeter deep sockets, quarter-inch ratchet, and a quarter-inch T15 Torx bit, also a pair of pliers and a Phillips head screwdriver. All right, guys. Now in order to on install our factory intake, we have to remove our engine cover. In order to do that, we have to take our engine brace off. Now if you don't have a strut tower brace, you can skip that step and go right for the cover. We've got one on here, so I'm gonna grab a 13-millimeter deep socket and remove both nuts on both strut towers. All right, with these out of the way, you can lift up on your brace and remove it. From here, what you can do is lift straight up on your engine cover and just pops out of position, you can set that aside too. All right, now that we have access to our intake tubing, before we loosen it up from the throttle body, I'm actually gonna remove the two tubings. We have one, our sound tube and then two, the PCV breather hose going to the valve. So for this, what you're really gonna do is just pull back on the gray locking tab and just release, it's that simple. For this hose clamp, you do need a pair of pliers, so I've got one here. You're really just gonna pinch, hold it together and then pull back. Pinch until you hear the click, pull back and then you can let go. While we're unplugging things and taking hoses off, let's disconnect our MAF sensor right here on the front. Underneath of it there's gonna be a red locking tab, you just want to pull straight back on that and pinch and disconnect, it's that simple. And here you can see that locking tab. So originally it'll be pushed down, just pull it straight back. Gonna push in right here, pinch and pull. All right, just two quick things we have to do. Grab an 8-millimeter socket and we're gonna loosen up this clamp here. If you don't have an 8 socket, you can use a flat head, you can put the flathead right in there and loosen it up, this is just a little quicker. All right, and then if you want, you can just disconnect. All right, so now you can grab a 10-millimeter socket and remove this one bolt holding on the factory heat shield. All right, from here, just make sure your tubing is out of the way, you can disconnect that from the housing, it's just kind of a retainer there. Pull up altogether the intake, should come off all in one piece. All right, guys, we got our factory intake off of our '14 GT behind me, it's on the table next to our C&L street cold air intake. And I want to take you through some of the similarities and differences between the two kits. Let's start up top with the filter. Now I took apart the factory intake to expose the flat paper element dry filter, does an okay job filtering out unwanted particles. It's really not maximizing airflow, however, especially not in this heat shield. Now the new filter from C&L is an oiled, washable and reusable conical 360-degree filter, made of a high-quality cotton gauze element that also has a diamond wire mesh surrounding the outer layer. Now that is gonna be superior when it comes to comparing it to the factory option. And really mainly the big thing you want to focus on here is this is gonna be so much better of a high-flow free-flow unrestricted air filter, so huge upgrade in the airflow department and also a huge upgrade in the filtering department. Now this one here again is washable, so when it comes time for routine maintenance, no need to pick up a new filter like you would with your factory one, pull it straight out, wash it, re-oil it, throw it right back in and you're good to go, good as new. Moving on from there, you have a rotomolded heat shield and tubing here which is a lot larger than the factory one. It's not gonna be as restrictive as the factory one as well that has this flex tube in the middle of it, lots of room for that air to flow freely, no restrictions, and it also has all of the fittings here, to make sure you're reusing your factory hoses including that factory sound tube, sou can make sure you hear that aggressive sound inside the cabin. The other big thing you want to focus on here is the MAF housing, this includes a 95 millimeter MAF housing, the MAF sensor not included, you're reusing the factory one which is fine. But what's cool about this is you have an insert that you can use that makes it a no-tune required intake. This insert has a little slot here and lines up with that MAF housing to make sure that everything is a perfect fit and it makes it just a little smaller so it doesn't require that tune. So right out of the box, you can bolt it up with this tubing insert inserted and you're good to go. If you want to spice things up a little bit, really maximize the potential of this intake since it is a bolt-on power mod, remove that tubing, it's a much larger MAF housing, then you can upload a 93 octane tune like the one from Bama, you can pick that up and really maximize gains. And like I said earlier guys, this has been bench-tested and dyno tested, you walk away with about 20 horsepower peak over the factory numbers. And in our previous dyno test that we've done, we've seen gains up to 57 horsepower and torque under the curve. So really that tune is gonna maximize this thing if you decide not to insert that optional insert. But with it, again, no tune required. With all of that said, guys, I want to show you guys a couple of things that we have to transfer over. We're gonna move over our factory mass airflow sensor from the side of our tubing here, it's gonna bolt right up to that housing. Now because we're not strapping this down to the dyno today, we are gonna show you guys the no-tune required version which is going to use this insert, so you want to make sure you're sliding that through. So with that inserted, let's unbolt our factory MAF sensor and move it over. All right, so grab a T15 Torx bit and you're gonna remove the two Torx screws holding on the factory MAF sensor. I'm gonna use my quarter-inch ratchet and my T15 bit, the socket and we're gonna remove these. Once you crack it loose, you can typically get it out by hand, just trying to get this to move out far enough. Gonna use this socket here and get them off. All right, once they're out, slide your MAF sensor back. Just be careful with it, you don't want to damage this. Set it down. We can put our factory tubing aside. All right, so next up we're gonna install our MAF sensor. If you are going with a custom tune, you do not want to use this insert, set it aside and just install the MAF sensor directly into the 95-millimeter housing. If you do not want to go with a custom tune, you are gonna need to use this insert. Slide it in now, line up the open holes so you have to spin it until the holes line up. You're gonna grab your MAF sensor and install it. Now before you do so, your MAF sensor will have a rubber gasket around the edges. If it does not, you want to go back to your factory tubing and check to see if the rubber gasket is still in the tubing, you'll need to transfer that over. Ours is still seated here, so what we're gonna do is slot this in. Now it only lines up one way. If your holes don't line up, just flip the sensor over and get them to line up. From there, grab the Phillips head screws included in the kit. You're not reusing the factory Torx screws, the Phillips heads are there for you. And thread those in by hands just to get them to catch. From there, grab your Phillips head screwdriver and tighten them down. All right, so the next step here, we're gonna focus on our tubing. Now the tubing does have a couple of fittings I want to talk about in the kit. One is an actual hose fitting that would screw in and you'd plug the hose into, the other one is a threaded plug that would plug an open hole. Now these are gonna be used for two different applications. If you have an automatic transmission, you're gonna need to use the one where the host fitting would connect. You have an additional hose that'll connect to this tubing, that also means you have an additional hose you removed from the factory tubing. Since we're rocking a six-speed manual, we do have only two and we'll be focusing on this plug. Now let me give you the rundown on the plugs. If you look at your new tubing here, there's a fitting molded into the plastic for your PCV hose, there's a larger one that's open for your sound tube and then the middle one here is solid. So if you have an automatic transmission, all you'll need to do is drill this open. It's already got some molded template there for you so you know exactly how big to make that. Grab the appropriate drill bit size, open that up and then you're gonna thread this guy in with a wrench. Now this is a tapered fitting, so for the guys with automatic transmissions, as you start tightening it, it'll get tighter and tighter and have a leak-free seal. You don't have to worry about using thread tape or any kind of sealant like that, it'll get tighter with that tapered fitting. Now if you have the manual transmission, since ours is molded shut, we don't have to worry about drilling it open, there's no point drilling it open just to put a plug in, it's already plugged. So if yours is not molded shut, if you have this opened up, thread this guy in, you're gonna need to plug that hole. Manual transmission guys don't have an additional hose that'll need to be plugged in. Hope that makes sense. We don't have to worry about that now because we do have the manual and it's already sealed, we don't need the plug so set that aside. There are two couplers included in the kit that we're gonna install next, one is larger, one is smaller. The smaller one is gonna go to the throttle body side of your tubing, the larger one is gonna go to your filter side. So what you're gonna do is take the clamps included in the kit, find the appropriate size. The larger ones go to the larger coupler, smaller ones go to the smaller coupler. Install the larger one over this end here going to your filter. You'll know it's the filter side, number one, because when you're looking at it, the C&L logo be facing you, it's on the right, it's also on the sound tube side, the fitting that's larger. The coupler going to the throttle body will be on the molded side where this tube fitting is. So we have that in place, grab your socket and tighten this guy down. All right, so when you're tightening your clamp down, you want to make sure it's seated all the way against the edge there so it gets a nice tight seal and an even seal. All right, so now we're gonna do the same thing on the other side. Trying to get it to rotate over. Make sure the bolt head is facing upward and tighten it down. Next up, guys, we're gonna install our MAF housing onto our tubing on the filter side here. Now when you install this, you want to make sure you're orienting it the right way. If you look down the tubing, you'll see the MAF sensor has an open slot on one side and a closed slot on the other. You want the open slot on your filter side, that's where the airflow is shooting through. You want it to shoot through that open slot there. So when you install this, you want to make sure you're installing it in a way that it's facing the filter, you want it facing the flow of air. When you're installing this, you're gonna go right in there making sure that there's a clamp on there as well. You want to put the MAF sensor on the front of the vehicle side, not toward the inside of the vehicle. You want to make sure it's facing the rad basically in the same position that your factory sensor was in on the stock intake. So we'll pop that right in here with a clamp, get the clamp into position, and then we'll tighten it down. Just make sure that this guy is oriented right. Grab an 8 socket and tighten your clamp. All right, next up, we're gonna take our heat shield and our weatherstripping. Now this is basically gonna seal in underneath the hood. What you want to do is make sure you're installing it on the appropriate side. Heat shield is gonna sit in the vehicle just like that, this curved portion is gonna be on the top, so you want to be installing that stripping just around this little section here. There isn't a ton included in the kit but there's just enough to cover this little strip. All right, and then this guy just sits right around there, can even slide it back if you have a little bit of extra seated there. All right, so it'll seat just like that and give you a little bit more of a seal to trap out some of that engine bay heat. All right, next step we're gonna actually install our heat shield. One thing you want to take note of is the factory air duct here going down to the grille. You want to make sure that the heat shield you're installing is going right underneath of that and hugging that inside the housing. You want to make sure that the air is gonna flow straight through and the new heat shield seats properly. So you're gonna bring that over and meet it up with where your factory 10-millimeter bolt was. Make sure that clip is there, insert that bolt back through. And I'm gonna start tightening it down by hand just to get it situated, we'll come back and tighten it down later. So with your heat shield in place, grab your tubing and we're gonna pop it onto our throttle body. Pull the hose out of the way there, make sure that's out. It'll seat right on there. Grab a socket and tighten it down at the throttle body. Gonna make sure both of these clamps are tight. All right, now when you're installing your filter, take note of where this chrome line is, you want that to be on the bottom facing downward. Make sure the clamp is still there, it is pre-installed right out of the box. Gonna pop this into the heat shield and slide it onto the MAF housing. Just like that. Once you have that seated, grab your socket again and tighten down this clamp. All right. So next up, take your MAF harness, now this is gonna route right into your MAF sensor here on the front, clip it in, drop the locking tab. There are zip ties included in the kit, if you choose to zip tie this back. Not completely necessary, you can really tuck it and it's perfectly fine as is. Now again, if you have an automatic transmission, you have a third one in the middle, plug that guy in to the fitting that you installed on your tubing. For us, we have a manual trans, so we just have the two, this is gonna go right here onto our new fitting, snaps right in. Now for our sound tube, grab a pair of pliers, we're gonna open up the clamp and install it onto the new fitting. All right, so now we want to tighten down that final bolt, the 10-millimeter on the side of our filter. All right, couple steps left. Wanna pop our engine cover back into place. That guy is just gonna seat right into those factory retainer little holes for the pins, push all four of those guys down. Now we can do our strut tower brace. Now for the strut tower brace, you can stand on one side and feed it on over. Drop it onto the studs, grab the factory 13-millimeter nuts, and I'm gonna thread those guys in by hand before we tighten them down. Grab your 13 socket and tighten them down. With that strut tower brace tightened down, you're good to go. Well, guys, that's gonna wrap up my review and install for the C&L Street Cold Air Intake with the 95-Millimeter MAF housing, available for the '11 to '14 Mustang GT. And you can pick yours up for your S197 right here at americanmuscle.com.