How will this affect my car’s safety systems? is probably not a question that the average gearhead ponders while plotting out their next vehicle mod, but if we are to learn anything from the video above, it’s that this is definitely worthy of consideration.
YouTuber “GuitarmageddonZL1” just installed a pair of electronic exhaust diverters on his Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, which allow the exhaust gases from the car’s 650-horsepower, 6.2-liter LT4 to be diverted away from the mufflers at the push of a button. It’s a fairly simple modification, requiring just a couple of quick cuts on the factory exhaust system and some basic wiring, which allows the driver to open up the exhaust each time he feels he hasn’t been quite loud enough.
GuitarmageddonZL1’s install went smoothly, and the system functioned exactly as advertised. That is, right up until the exhaust got so monstrously loud during some spirited driving that it triggered the side-airbag sensors, causing them to deploy without warning while the ZL1 was traveling at a brisk 140 miles per hour. The look on his face is priceless.
At the end, the YouTuber and his mechanic conclude that one or both side-airbag sensors were tripped because of their proximity to the diverter outlets. We can’t imagine a worse car to experience this in, as the Camaro‘s notoriously bad rear visibility, coupled with the obstruction of the side windows, mean that the driver was essentially flying blind.
On the other hand, that just sort of makes it funnier.
Check out GuitarmageddonZL1’s unfortunate run-in with his brand-new exhaust diverter kit above.