Top Benefits from Installing a Ford Ranger Exhaust Upgrade

Ford’s second-generation PJ / PK Rangers are as all-Australian as the red sand roads you’ll find them driving on in the outback. They weren’t born just for the bush, though.

Rangers are designed to be the mid-sized workhorses that’ll fit in just as well in town as they can in the bush; and with their range of body types, trim levels, and even transmissions, they’ve always been comfortable on both fronts. It explains why the Ranger continues to be Australia’s best-selling truck, in addition to why PJs and PKs are still among the most sought-after utes on the market.

They only had two powerplant options though, and it’s no surprise that the turbocharged 3.0L V6 is the favourite amongst them. With peak power and torque respectively at 156PS and 380Nm, they’re superb engines for hauling or crawling that still have a few extra PS up their sleeve if you know how to get at them. An exhaust upgrade is a way to coax them out, and it’s only fitting that an all-Australian exhaust system would be to do it with.

Time to Upgrade Your Ranger

Close-up of lifted Ford Ranger with new exhaust system

If you thought the gen 2 Rangers had already given as much as they had to give, then think again. There’s a reason these tireless little utes are so popular as affordable weekend rompers, and a 3″ turbo back exhaust for Ford Ranger is an easy upgrade that lets these veterans of sensible ute design perform like the champs they are.

A complete, aftermarket Ranger exhaust system made entirely from high-quality stainless steel is going to consist of the following sections:

·   A mandrel bent turbo dump pipe;

·   A high flow, 200 cell diesel catalytic converter;

·   A front connector pipe with double-braided flex joint;

·   A complete, side exit tailpipe assembly; and,

·   A baffled Muffler or resonator assembly.

These systems are direct swaps for the factory exhaust mounted on all V6-equipped PJ and PK models, regardless of body style or transmission type. No special tools, equipment, or expertise are required with a gen 2 swap – it’s the advantage of a brilliantly designed vehicle – and it’s an upgrade that with only basic tools, any Ranger owner can on their own.

What are the Benefits of Upgrading?

If you own a gen 2 Ranger, you’re looking at a 16PS / 50Nm power increase above factory ratings just from upgrading your exhaust. It may not sound like much initially, but consider too that these earlier generation utes are weighted down by a lot of the power-sapping features and accessories that you find on new models of vehicles. It means that no matter what state of tune your vehicle’s in, you’re going to immediately feel the difference an additional 16PS can make.

And as is the case with any turbocharged engine, a mandrel bent exhaust is going to allow these venerable Ford 3.0Ls to:  

·   Profit from increased exhaust flow and velocity throughout the entire exhaust system;

·   Realize improved draw-through scavenging on each combustion cycle; and, 

·   Experience a reduction of backpressure directly behind the turbo for better exhaust flow-through.

A Ranger exhaust upgrade gives this solid V6s all they need to show an instant increase in both low-end responsiveness and high-end power. And it’s also an improvement that doesn’t have to be a budget breaker.

Close-up of exhaust for ford ranger

Keeping Ranger Exhaust Temps Low

Heat may be an essential component of combustion, but it’s also detrimental to better performance. That’s why of all the benefits that a Ford Ranger exhaust upgrade can provide, improving heat dispersion is the most important.

Without an adequate means of dispersion, the excess heat given off by a small diameter factory exhaust can cause any of the following to occur:

·   Hot, turbulent exhaust gases lingering in the exhaust system;

·   Exhaust gas temperature (EGT) sensor failure, leading to an increase in fuel consumption;

·   Heated engine compartment air causing unrelated electronic problems;

·   An Unavoidable increase in oil temperature and viscosity breakdown; and,

·   An increase in cabin temperatures due to heat radiating through the floorplan. 

Heat retention has a cascading affect; and when you compound these problems with an insulating blanket of fine road dust, you have an exhaust-induced situation where more heat’s being retaining than being disposed of. It’s not the predicament you want your vehicle operating in.

With an upgraded Ford Ranger exhaust however, the following features help to encourage heat dispersion:

·   A ceramic coated dump pipe that contains heat instead of allowing it to permeate throughout the engine compartment;

·   A heat resistant enamel coating on the connector and tail pipes to aide with heat containment and dispersion; and,

·   Precision welding that eliminates the possibility of heated gases leaking.

Upgrading the factory exhaust Ford Ranger came equipped with can fix a host of problems under the bonnet simply by keeping temperatures low. It takes the right type of exhaust material to make this happen though, and that’s why nothing less than 409 stainless will do.

The Advantage of 409 Stainless 

Stock Ford Ranger exhaust systems are typically made from mild or dipped, aluminized steel. And while they may be the best steel types for mass production, there are more durable steels available with a much wider range of characteristics. That’s where 409 stainless steel comes in.

Premium quality 409 stainless steel is the standard for aftermarket exhaust manufacturing, and a Ford Ranger exhaust system that’s 100% Australian made from 409 stainless is a system that you can expect to last. With a 409 stainless exhaust, you’re able to take advantage of:

·   Greater resistance to rust and corrosion than plain aluminized steel;

·   Higher formability, allowing more flex without breaking during heating cycles; and,

·   An increased heat transfer capacity over almost all other stainless steels.

409 stainless steel is the ideal compromise between price and protection. There are tougher, more heat resistant, and ultimately pricier stainless steels that an exhaust system can be made from, but none of them strikes the perfect balance for Australia’s unique climate that 409 does.    

Close-up of ford ranger underneath

The Final Word

At the end of the day, gen 2 Ranger owners are easily some of Australia’s most satisfied ute owners. There’s more to it than just the pride of owning a purely Australian-born ute. Reliability and straightforward engineering mark the PJs and PKs among the best trucks of any size, from anywhere in the world.   

Even one of the best can benefit from an upgrade, and installing a 3″ turbo back exhaust for Ford Ranger on yours is going to let this faithful ute prove even more just how much more it has to offer. It’s an upgrade you’ll be glad that you made.