Corsa Performance Diesel Exhaust

Performance, an utterance that makes most gear heads, like us, ponder solely about power improvements. In the case of our ’05 Chevy Silverado 2500 with the venerable Duramax Diesel, it’s that, and more – much more as you read below. With the price of diesel over $3 per gallon and some long-haul trips with a loaded trailer on our calendar, we needed a way to squeeze a few more ponies out of our rig and add a few miles per gallon. While most power improvements come at the cost of dumping more fuel into the cylinders, we found two great products that gave us the kick in the pants we needed, were easy to install and even improved our fuel economy too – sweet!



Diesel Performance Exhaust System

Our first product was a new exhaust system from Corsa. A company you may not have heard of, but one that will certainly make some noise – pun intended – in the industry. Their products range from mild to wild and they’re mission is to make the best possible product available to their consumers. They definitely hit their mark.

Corsa sent us their 100% 304 stainless steel diesel exhaust system, which starts at the cat and ends at the tailpipe. Don’t change that channel just yet though, the Corsa exhaust system is really like no other. Their patented Reflective Sound Cancellation technology is pretty unique. While we won’t bore you with technical details, we will tell you the two, most important things about it. One – the sound of the exhaust more closely resembles the rumble of a hot rod, and not an oil-burning, valve-clattering diesel. And two, The RSC technology allows for an uninhibited, straight-through exhaust design that doesn’t increase the overall volume. Oh yeah, there’s that important point that Corsa’s exhaust system flows 68% more freely than the OE configuration. The bottom line – more ponies and a really sweet, deep rumble from your diesel, with just a hint of that turbo whistle.


Performance Intake and Air Filter System

 Advanced Flow Engineering (AFE) sent us their Stage II intake and Magnum Force cool air dam system to round out our plan of granting our diesel mill the ability to breathe easier. It’s all well and good to exhale freely, but you need to be able to take a deep breath too.

AFE’s Stage II kit is comprised of two major components. The Stage II air intake tube, which is more free flowing, and the Magnum Force air box, which isolates the incoming air from the hot engine compartment, all while filtering it through a mesh cotton-gauze, free flowing air filter. The salient points are these: Allow cool air to enter through a non-restrictive filter and let it travel freely into the intake manifold. The bottom line – our Duramax can now take a nice, big deep breath of cool air, which means we can wring out even more power from that big smoker and tack on a few miles to each gallon of fuel burned.


The Results…

So what were our findings and how do we qualify the results? We didn’t have access to a chassis dyno big enough to hold the big ’05 Silverado 2500, so we did a series of 0 to 60 tests before and after each change. Here are the results:

Configuration 0-60 Acceleration – Engine Cold / A.C. ON 0-60 Acceleration – Engine Hot / A.C. ON 0-60 Acceleration – Engine Hot / A.C. Off
Stock – O.E. Configuration
11.75 seconds
11.25 seconds
10.25 seconds
Corsa Exhaust System
11.25 seconds
10.65 seconds
9.90 seconds
Net Difference from previous alteration
– .50 seconds
– .60 seconds
– .35 seconds
AFE Stage II / Magnum Force kit
11.10 seconds
10.25 seconds
9.35 seconds
Net Difference from previous alteration
– .15 seconds
– .40 seconds
– .55 seconds
Overall Net Results – .65 seconds – 1 second – .90 seconds


The numbers don’t lie; there are dramatic improvements with the Advanced Flow Engineering Stage II intake kit / Magnum Force cool air dam, and the Corsa free-flowing RSC exhaust system. We saw a full second shaved off of our 0-60 times when the engine was hot and the air conditioning was on – that’s a lot.

So what’s it like? The deeper exhaust note of the free-flowing exhaust, coupled with the free-flowing intake system give our truck a rather unique throaty sound. It’s not louder mind you, just a nice, mellow, rumble that I think you’ll like. What you won’t hear is the chatter sound that’s synonymous with a diesel engine. There’s also a noticeable “seat of the pants” change too. From dead stop you’ll still get that oh-so-long turbo lag that comes with a big diesel engine, but once the turbo wraps up, you’ll find yourself gripping the steering wheel a little tighter to hang on.



Performance Electronic Brake Controller

There’s a dilemma though, and here’s where it ties into, what we feel is the true nature of “performance”. We managed to get our big Silverado to go really fast, but how do you get it to stop when towing heavy loads? With a few trailer-laden, long-haul trips immanent, we had to find a way to stop the big rig. Enter Valley Industries and their really slick Journey HD trailer brake kit.


The Journey HD electronic brake controller features solid state electronics with an easy-to-read digital display. The unit doesn’t need to be leveled either, which means you can mount it anywhere and in any configuration – awesome. It also features two other important components. The two, infinitely adjustable, output (power) and ramp time (brake reaction time) controls can be easily adjusted to fit any load you can throw at it, and can handle as many as eight brakes (2-4 axles). Lastly, the unit has a self diagnostic system that not only helps you during installation, but continually checks itself and the wiring and will send codes to the digital display to let you know if there’s a problem.

The unit performs quite well with our truck and trailer. We can change the controller’s braking ability on the fly quite easily, which is darned handy if you’re spending any amount of time in the city, then hitting the highway for a long jaunt. After you get the controller dialed in, stopping becomes as easy as if there wasn’t a trailer behind you and they become nearly transparent.


Corsa Performance
140 Blaze Industrial Parkway
Berea, OH 44017
Toll Free: 800-486-0999
Fax: 440-891-1868
Web Site:
Advanced Flow Engineering
191 Granite St
Corona, CA 92879
Phone: 951-493-7100
Fax: 951-493-7177
Web Site:
Valley Industries
1313 South Stockton Street
Lodi, CA 95240
Web Site:

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