• Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Compare Factory

The Blog for the Indecisive

Axle-Back Vs. Cat-Back Vs. Header-Back Exhaust Systems

Exhaust Systems

Most people enjoy driving powerful and sports cars, but the reality is, not all of us can afford one, right? Well, no matter what you drive, you can probably at least make it sound sporty and perform a tad bit better by installing an aftermarket performance exhaust system. Aftermarket performance exhaust systems are one of the most sought after car upgrades in Australia, and for all the right reasons – they’re affordable, improve performance, sound, looks, and mileage.

However, picking the right exhaust kit is key to reaping all of these benefits. With so many different exhaust kits available nowadays, deciding which one is right for your needs can be quite difficult. The biggest dilemma that most new exhaust kit buyers have, however, is whether they should get an axle-back, header-back or cat-back exhaust system.


Axle-back exhaust systems are an easy and affordable way to alter how your vehicle sounds and looks. They’re the cheapest out of the three options and are ideal for people looking to give their vehicle a more aggressive sound and look without overspending. These exhaust systems replace your stock muffler and exhaust tip, and you can easily install an axle-back exhaust yourself, as long as you use the included template.

Cat-back exhaust systems, on the other hand, are more expensive then axle-back systems, but they also provide more than just a new sound and look. Cat-back exhaust systems come with moderate horsepower and torque improvements, and they replace everything from the catalytic converter to the tailpipe, hence their name.


And lastly, header-back exhaust systems replace the entire stock exhaust of your vehicle. As a result, these are the most expensive exhaust kits, but they also provide the most benefits in every aspect. Installing such an exhaust system may require some modification, and you’ll have to get it installed at a skilled mechanic. These systems include performance extractors, catalytic converters, mufflers, and pipes.

Regardless of what type you end up choosing, you should pay attention to the materials the exhaust is made of. Typically, most aftermarket exhaust systems are made with stainless or aluminized steel. Both of these materials are superior in quality when compared to the mild steel factory exhausts are made of. They’re durable, rust-resistant and perform well under extreme heat. Most aftermarket exhaust systems made out of stainless steel will outlast the vehicle they’re fitted on. With that said, aftermarket exhaust systems are one of the best long-term investments you can make for your vehicle.

By Anthony Hendriks

The life of the party, Anthony is always up for spending some time with family and friends, when not blogging of course! Ever since a child, his love for books of mystery, race cars and travelling keeps on growing so it's difficult for him to single out that one all-time favourite hobby. If there's one thing he hates, though, it's having pictures taken but you already guessed that from his choice of plant photo for the blog.