Why This SS Ram-Air CAI for the C6 Z06 from Mamo Motorsports is Better
Most (not all) CAI designs still pull heated air from under the hood (with only the small vent in the hood helping to reduce temps), but that is only marginally effective in reducing your IATs.
The Mamo Motorsports Ram Air SS delivers air at true ambient inlet temps, as long as you are moving over walking speed, which provides more oxygen-dense air that helps create more power.
This system requires cutting a large rectangle in the radiator shroud for achieving a ram air effect and the benefits of cooler ambient temperature air at the inlet.
The front grill opening is designed to pressurize the radiator cavity in the C6 design, which at speed forces cooler ambient air through the radiator, so the engineering for receiving ram air at the inlet is built into the Vette’s design. So, once you install this C6Z CAI, this inherent design also pressurizes and provides ambient airflow to your engine. Naturally, the faster you go the more the pressure differential increases the effectiveness of the system.
Keeping warm air from under the hood away from the inlet makes a big difference. In fact, power increases by 1% for every 10 degrees of intake air temp reduction. Of course, having this cooler air under pressure makes even more power – think BOOST (albeit a very slight amount), versus designs that slightly choke flow at higher RPM (you can validate this by logging KPA figures and seeing them drop under WOT).
The filter is huge, twice as large or more than most CAIs on the market to deliver excellent airflow and filtration capabilities, and it’s easy to get to for cleaning. This filter, combined with a larger plenum box with a lid that features 10x the cross sectional area of the four-inch plenum inlet means there is more high-pressure surface area pushing on that 4" air duct and feeding your engine. This is a key advantage to this CAI’s design.
Awesome performance benefits aside, we simply LOVE the way this CAI looks when it’s installed in a C6 Z06 Corvette. We think everyone can appreciate mods that appear more OEM in fit and finish, and this CAI does that in spades.
REAL, REPEATABLE PERFORMANCE
We performed track testing using a Dragy to record essentially a dyno pull at speed. We took one long pull from 3,700 RPM to 7,000 RPM in 3rd gear and set the Dragy to record from 65 MPH to 123 MPH. We lifted as soon the factory rev limiter engaged at approximately 7,050 RPM. We started the run between 55 - 60 MPH (approximately 3,400 RPM) with a quick roll into WOT at that lower speed so the car was already WOT, firmly planted and accelerating at 65 MPH when the Dragy started recording data.
We did three pulls at the same water temp, starting in the exact same place, on the same track going the same direction, and we threw out the best and worst results of three runs for each configuration.
The first test was a baseline test with the OEM CAI, with the only mod to the ’08 Z06 being a ported OEM throttle body, which was used in every test (below):
Next up was the OEM TB and Mamo C6Z CAI Ram Air Intake on a factory tune (below):
Below are the final results with the Ram Air system and a calibration. Our butt dyno had already told us we made a solid increase over just the Ram Air and the OEM tune, but the biggest difference we felt was right from the hit where the car leaped, in spite of only turning around 3500 RPM as I rolled into the throttle. When it had the OEM CAI on it, the car was notably soft at that starting RPM. The Ram Air intake with the stock tune helped but when we dialed in the tune it made a remarkable difference.
A total reduction in ET of .56 seconds and requiring 81 feet less to get there! These are some serious gains in a 3rd gear pull.
What About Heat Soak?
The bottom line is this: No system is impervious to heat soak, but IATs drop much faster using this CAI design than any other design we’ve tested. If hear soak is a real concern under any condition, we recommend upgrading to a lower temp thermostat, electric water pump, and installing a switch to manually control your fans.
The Mamo C6Z 90mm CAI this kit sells for $625 (you retain your OEM coupler to connect the lid of the plenum box to the throttle body) . If you have a larger, 102/103mm aftermarket TB, the kit includes a larger coupler and the kit cost is $655.