Pontiac Grand Prix GTP Exhaust Page
Here are some performance upgrades available for your 3.8L W body
This is an article written by Zoomer on
Let me start out by saying that if you don't like the way I review then you can spend your own
time and money and do your own review. It seems that many love to bash my research but
never want to do any of their own. This was done for the benefit of all, not just you.
I did not dyno test these products. While I do have some dyno #'s it would not be practical for
me to dyno 4 different setups. For one that would take an enormous amount of labor and cost
100's in dyno time. For 2 the #'s would mean nothing to anyone except those using that exact
same setup. If this is a problem please don't even read my review.
Now, on to the good stuff:
Stock – Stainless parts that should last the life of your car. Heat shielded crossover helps keep
some heat away from TB.
ZZP Ported manifold – All 3 pieces are now coated, crossover is ceramic coated. Work done
can be read on our site
SS Headers – I spent $350 plus $50 for next day shipping. Upon opening the box I was
disappointed. The headers look EXTREMELY cheap. They are a product that someone was
obviously trying to cut some serious corners on. They do not have any coating and are made
from very thin, very cheap standard issue exhaust tube that exhaust shops buy by the 10’
chunk for a few dollars. Packaging is average.
Customer service from SS was pretty good, their site was easy to order from and I got my
product right away. Shipping was reasonable and the headers were not missing any parts.
Exhaust manifold gaskets are included although not needed because we have copper from the
TOG – Currently available at every 3800 site from prices ranging from $699 to $849. Packaging
is very good, customer service varies by vendor, some extra parts included (such as O2 ext)
Durability – The TOG’s win out here followed closely by the ZZP manifolds. The TOG headers
come with a nice nickel finish and are made from very thick, long lasting metal. The finish
doesn’t stay pretty that long but should last for the life of your car. The ZZP manifolds are
coated stock and therefore should last a very long time as well. The SS headers are very cheap
thin metal that started rusting after about 3 days of being on my car. I would not expect
uncoated SS headers to last for more than 2-5 years depending.
Warranty – TOG wins here as they will pretty much take car of you no matter what happens. I
got into an accident not to long ago and damaged my headers, TOG said that they didn’t care
how they got damaged, replacement would be free. The ZZP’s come with a 3 year warranty
from performance coatings for problems with the coating. I do not know what the SS warranty
Install – Hands down the ZZP wins here. ZZP’s are based on factory units so install is a direct
bolt in replacement. Both the SS and the TOG’s have installation issues. Contrary to popular
belief though the SS headers are no harder to install than the TOG’s. The SS headers have an
issue with the O2 sensor being in the wrong location. They also have issues hitting the sway
bar in some cars. The TOG’s have issues hitting the sway in some cars and although their O2 is
in the right spot the large size of the headers make them much harder to fit in the engine bay.
The TOG’s are also very hard to get to seal. The SS headers do not have this issue.
Performance – The TOG’s weigh slightly more than stock but when you do the downpipe at
the same time it can negate that. ZZP manifolds mate well to the RT downpipe which could also
save a little weight. The big winner here though is SS. The SS headers with their 2 piece
construction, thin wall pipes, and narrow diameters are around 10 pounds lighter than the
TOG’s. For those looking to drop weight this is very significant.
For a GT the recommendation has to go the SS Headers followed by the ZZP manifolds. The
TOG runner sizes are just too large to get velocity in an L36 application. The SS headers also
have closer matched runner lengths than the other two contenders. The SS headers are lighter
giving an already light GT an even greater gain. If you were to get the SS’s coated and not
care about anything but performance they would be the way to go. The ZZP manifolds are
coated giving them a performance advantage in that regard over the SS’s but I feel that the
shape and weight benefits of the SS outweigh the ZZP coating advantage.
For a lightly mod’d GTP the SS headers should also give the largest benefit for many of the
same reasons they work well on a GT. For a mid-highly mod’d GTP the TOG’s rule. They boast
almost twice the flow potential of the SS or the ported manifolds. The SS headers and the ZZP
manifolds are limited to <2.5” outlets which means that high 12’s are possible but they will
become a restriction around 3.0 pulley, low 13 range. If you plan on getting very serious then
TOG’s are currently the only way to go.
Value – With every mod you have to take cost into consideration. Just because something is
better doesn’t always mean it’s worth it. You should always try and get the most HP for your $
whether it be spending it on exhaust or some other part of the car.
ZZP Manifolds win out here. At $250 they are an extreme value. Once the port work is done
they have the same runner sizes and outlet as the SS headers. With the coating coming
standard and the lowest install cost they are a value that is hard to beat.
The SS headers are probably last here. They fill a much-needed gap but should be priced a
little lower based on what you get. They are a 2-piece design, which lowers the price. They
come with no coating what so ever; they don’t come with an O2 extension or a flex pipe. Install
is going to be costly if you have a shop do it because of the need to get the O2 moved. To do
the job right you need:
$75 flex pipe
$20 O2 extension
$175 for a good coating
$150+ for install
This puts total cost up to $790+ which isn’t that good of a deal.
The TOG’s are a good value for what you get. While we would all love to see the best products
for the cheapest prices the TOG’s are not that far out of line. At $849 originally they were a
little high but now at $699 they seem to be in line with our average paid surcharge for owning
unpopular cars. The best never comes cheap and the TOG’s are the best.
One thing I was reminded of after buying all these products: I bought a pair of cheap ass
headers for my 69 Camaro for $59 and they were painted! The SS headers are $350 and are on
par with these. Later I bought a set of Hooker Super Comps for my Camaro and they were
$459, they reminded me of the $699 TOG’s (but the Hookers didn’t come with a flex pipe or O2
ext) so doing the math I can see who’s overpriced and who’s not.
Hopefully after SLP releases theirs the competition will heat up and we’ll see the TOG’s and the
SS’s both drop $100.