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This "may" raise some eye brows and some asking themselves "What the hell is this guy thinking?" None the less, curiosity and improved engine life, performance and slightly better fuel economy (?) does make me consider the question quite seriously.

The question - Can you buy true "Performance Headers" and a "True Tuned Exhaust System" for a 2007 E350 3.5 ltr V6 with factory fitted Sports Package?

The logic, headers and a tuned exhaust system produce "freer" air flow and reduces back pressure. Therefore, theoretically, that in itself should increase BHP and Torque as well as improving fuel economy, even if only marginally I have read that in some cases, BHP can be increased by as much 40 BHP and Torque can be increased by as much as 30 Torque. The 3.5 ltr V6 already produces 278 BHP I believe so getting it above (fingers crossed) would be a huge plus, especially for long distance/highway driving.

Naturally, there are many other things could be done, a cold air intake, turbo charger, performance chips etc etc etc. From what i can tell, the headers + exhaust offer improved BHP and Torque for a reasonable price.

All thoughts and opinions welcomed. And yes, buying an AMG or Black would be the "easiest option" ...... I wish; although I do know where there is an early model SL 550 pure AMG for sale .....
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
@tabijan

Thanks, not exactly what I wanted hear but at least I know what is what now. I believe there is a guy who makes custom exhaust systems for racing cars not far from me, at least there was about 5 years ago. Might have to go and talk to him and see if he can't build me the headers/extractors and exhaust.
 

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Exhaust system 'tuning' is a real art. Both engine performance (both power and emissions) and engine noise are factors. I would expect this path to be challenging! In your shoes, I'd rather look at tuning the engine control computer. For instance, the variable valve timing appears to be optimized for meeting emissions and fuel consumption targets, with power being ranked 3rd (in my opinion, just reading the tea leaves). If you wanted to rank fuel consumption 3rd and emissions 2nd, you may be able to trade-off the valve timing to get the power boost desired. Other factors to adjust include fuel injection timing and amounts and perhaps spark timing.

Note that all these changes (exhaust or engine tuning) may impact the factory service schedule, and you'll need to change the oil more often, ATF fluid more often, brake pads more often, or change the spark plugs more often, etc. As they say, your mileage may vary...
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Maxbumpo, there are always going to be trade offs I guess BUT, may have to rethink my ideas perhaps. Maybe I should just bite the bullet and go buy that AMG and be done with it.
 

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The Mercedes engineers developed a free flowing exhaust system that works well. Please don't get me started on all of the George, Barney and Elmer engineering that goes on in the garage that out-performs what was developed in Germany. I've laughed myself too many times reading how these cobbled up messes ended up turning on check engine lights, putting the system into default mode, melting underhood components and basically RUINING the vehicle.

ANY, I repeat ANY horsepower gains from headers can be easily out-performed by the driver losing 20 lbs. Headers are a way to make someone's 401k plan grow and a way to move money from your pocket to theirs.

WASTE OF TIME, MONEY AND THOUGHT.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
@tony1963tony

Um, so your point is ....??

Just kidding mate - point taken and accepted. I really did hope that Mercedes themselves may have had an AMG style header/exhaust system that might also fit my car.

Guess you just can't improve on perfection, especially German perfection 😊
 

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You should read all of the Elmer engineering that goes on over on the Chevrolet board. In particular, that group in the 1961 to 1964 Impala series where they are convinced that their bread-and-butter cheaply built Impala is the best vehicle ever designed on earth. Barney, George and Elmer are alive and well over there. Lots of money being poured into aftermarket 401k plans by people who probably struggle to keep their bills current.

Just read a post over there about tubular A-arms, as if those are a necessary item. LOL
 

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Seems to me that if it takes variable length intake runners to wring power out of the engine, any static exhaust manifold will be a compromise. Best overall vs better power down low OR at revs. Headers might shift the compromise point, hopefully towards what matters more to you. You’re going to need lots of dyno and track time to convince anyone there’s more power at the wheels vs “it sounds faster.” The latter seems to be worth money to a lot of people.

Sixto
05 E320 wagon 197K miles
 

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Most people would never openly admit that they tossed thousands of dollars in the wind. Instead, they'll make up a story that the dyno shop tried to buy the vehicle because it makes enough power to push a satellite into low earth orbit.
 

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While admittedly the exhaust manifolds are not free flowing at all, the cost of making custom headers and the power gains on a 3.5 is going to be astronomical and minimal in that order.
If you had a m113k and went to long tube headers and free flow catalytic converters, you would see gains in the 40rwhp range. M156 with tune about the same. With a stock 3.5 maybe 10 to 15whp possibly.
Keep in mind that this helps the engine in 50% or more throttle and does very little below that, so fuel efficiency isn’t probably going to increase with daily driving.
 

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That's great information if you are an aftermarket company picking the pockets of unsuspecting people - but where is your proof? Certified by an independent lab?

The graphs that I have seen over on the Chevrolet board show about a 5% gain in horsepower and torque. So, you have to ask yourself the question. If this additional gain comes in only at full throttle, what percentage of that is ever going to get used.

An engine rarely runs at full throttle and I'd bet that all passenger vehicle engines operate at full throttle less than 1/1000th of one percent of the total time in their useful lives.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hmm, okay then ........ the general consensus is that things like headers are a waste of money as they don't really achieve any productive benefits - ahh, to the buyer of them in any case.

German engineering is "possibly" the best in the world, not saying it is, just that it might be AND, certainly better than anything America can produce, so comparing things pertaining to Chev engines might be a bit pointless when discussing a Mercedes or any non American car. Just to clarify that a little, my 3.5 ltr V6 Merc produces MORE BHP than my 350 CI Chev Corvette V8 - so adding anything to an American (Chev at least) engine might well induce some improvements, possibly even significant improvements. 😉
 

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Totally agree with you.

My point was that the "scientists" over on the Chevrolet board will suggest to you that adding headers somehow doubled the horsepower. The 5% was for one of those ancient 350 engines. You are right that any engine Mercedes ever produced is far better than the George, Barny and Elmer Chevy engines.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I do have to admit one thing - way back I had a Chevy 307 Holden Brougham which I added extractors to and what was considered a performance exhaust and muffler back then and I actually did get better torque and horse power. I also got really really crappy fuel economy to go with it :)

Anyhow, think I'll just leave well enough alone and enjoy the precision (and perfection) of German Engineering as it is from the factory. Yu can't go any faster than 75 MPH in "some places" here (US) anyway so, logically, more power, speed, performance is a bit pointless as well, other than (maybe) boasting rights :)
 

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Totally agree with you.

My point was that the "scientists" over on the Chevrolet board will suggest to you that adding headers somehow doubled the horsepower. The 5% was for one of those ancient 350 engines. You are right that any engine Mercedes ever produced is far better than the George, Barny and Elmer Chevy engines.
What is a George Elmer or Barney engine? Plenty of Chevrolet engines that are much better than some Mercedes engines.
 

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That's great information if you are an aftermarket company picking the pockets of unsuspecting people - but where is your proof? Certified by an independent lab?

The graphs that I have seen over on the Chevrolet board show about a 5% gain in horsepower and torque. So, you have to ask yourself the question. If this additional gain comes in only at full throttle, what percentage of that is ever going to get used.

An engine rarely runs at full throttle and I'd bet that all passenger vehicle engines operate at full throttle less than 1/1000th of one percent of the total time in their useful lives.
No proof on this v6 just a guess but plenty of information and proof on the 156 and m113k. My engines run at full throttle quite a bit more than that, but I have 3 m113 k cars, a 996 and 997 turbo, and a few Porsche and Mercedes cars with “Elmered” engines. Lots of dyno time and other things.
I can tell you that the 113k exhaust manifolds shouldn’t be on a car with 300hp much less mid 400. They are built well, but terrible restrictive.
I am not a great fan of aftermarket headers, as they usually don’t fit well, create more heat, and are much thinner than a factory manifold. They can make quite a difference in efficiency though, and power gains in some engines.
 

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That's great information if you are an aftermarket company picking the pockets of unsuspecting people - but where is your proof? Certified by an independent lab?

Next I'll read where a bottle of Marvel's Mystery Oil made more horsepower.
 

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Personally I would leave everything as it is with the idea of doing something to what you've got .
I've got a Sept. 1991 built , sold in 1992 560 SEC . Didn't want to add anything to it that wasn't what came from the factory , with an exception :
I first changed the oil over to pure synthetic ( 0-40 ) then put a K & N air filter in the housing , 3 prong spark plugs of the highest quality with high quality wires , a copper pick up distributor cap / rotor then put 45 lbs in the tires (not recommended on rainy wet days ) for cruising and distance driving only . Make sure your fuel filter(s) are new and just doing these few things you will notice an increase in its response and pep . Plus better mileage .
Just something to think about .........
 
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