Convincing my parents to install an aftermarket exhaust system

So I’ve been wanting to get a nismo catback exhaust system for my family’s xterra, but I’m struggling to convince them. I’d be paying for it of course, but I can’t really think of any good reasons to comfort them of their concerns, which are that it’s too loud and that something could go wrong during the installation process at the garage, like the welding isn’t done well enough or something. Are there any good reasons, from a parent perspective, that could potentially convince them to let me put the exhaust system on the car? The only thing I can think of is that it would slightly improve the gas mileage because it’s probably lighter than the stock exhaust, but it’s not really a super strong reason. The exhaust really isn’t loud at all, just deep and throaty, but I wouldn’t think it would be anywhere near loud enough to get a ticket here in Washington state. Thanks in advance for any responses

Don’t try to convince your parents to modify the family car wait tIll you get you own car.


From the tests I’ve found so far it sounds great and is a bolt on system that should go on like a stock replacement would. Would think you wouldn’t get a ticket but it depends on how annoying you are being, the video’s I’ve found sound much quieter than the Hellcat’s and Shelby’s running around town late at night.

You are not going to get a noticeable gas mileage gain with a catback system; be it system weight or exhaust flow.
The biggest restriction in the exhaust is the catalytic converters and even more so if the substrate is caked up.

Note that exhaust is headed towards 800 dollars and is stated to be for off road use only, not street legal, and is louder.
There is no valid reason for doing this and especially on a car that does not belong to you.


You’re “struggling to convince them” because this is a bad idea, and they are trying to be polite about it.


well aren’t you helpful. I love your response, telling me it’s a bad idea without saying why, it really helps me better understand the situation I’m in

My first concern was they might not enjoy the extra noise, do the folks ever even drive the car? Looks like they would have a rare need for it. If it was my kid asking and it said you rarely drive the car, you may not even notice the change, it is with my money and it would bring me great joy to have a cooler sounding car at my expense, and I promise to not disturb the neighbors.

I’m afraid there really isn’t a good reason other than you like the sound of the aftermarket exhaust. And if the parents like quiet…Sorry… Aftermarket exhaust doesn’t really offer anything other than a different exhaust sound from my experience, unless you’ve modified the engine to the point that it actually needs to exhale faster.

I don’t see why they’d have an issue with it once they give you the SUV and you use your own money, though. Assuming they give it to you.

I used to do aftermarket exhaust myself. Now I’m kinda old and my son is about to start driving. I’ll probably let him drive my old Buick Lesabre. If he wants to slap a glass pack or something on there, I’d probably let him. Every time he leaves the driveway I’ll just shake my head and laugh, though!


Also it’s their vehicle and they don’t want it. Case closed. When and if it becomes yours, then you can do what you want, but then again is there any real advantage other than you like the extra noise? Just trying to be like the cool kids? Personally I wouldn’t bother, but it’s your money.


The best way to convince them would be to buy the car. Then if you are still living under their roof do some research on how loud it is and show it to your parents to assure them that noise will not be a nuisance. You may get some annoying responses here because you’re young and many of us are older. We realize how extremely temporary your problem is. They are right and you are young. But also enjoy your youth because that is temporary too. Some of us forget that.

When the Xterra become your vehicle, then you can do what you want.
Be cautious, does your locality require vehicle inspections? If so, will this exhaust system pass the inspection?
Regardless of the brand of aftermarket system, you usually do not see performance gains except at high RPM.
Have I done this? Yes, when I was young I liked the sound of a “performance” system.
So, when it becomes your vehicle it is essentially up to you.
But if you are still living at home, you might be better off following your parent’s response.


To paraphrase Tom Lehrer:
An exhaust is like a sewer: what you get out of it depends on what you put in.
Personally, I don’t want to hear what comes out of any engine with less than 8 cylinders.


Hi Homer:
I remember wanting to make similar changes to my parents’ car. They were opposed to it and I couldn’t understand why.

It took me a few years to realize, as others have noted, the only way it worked was to have 100% ownership of the car, including purchase, maintenance, insurance, & taxes.


First of all you wrote to a open Forum and you have no control over the replies. You have over reacted to Renagades responce by calling names which might get you flagged .

Even if your parents let you have this vehicle you might not be old enough where ever you live to have it in your name . If you live in their house , their rules . It is just that simple.


@homerpimpin - you may not like the answers here, but the fact is there is no good reason to do this. Making it louder doesn’t count. Once you own it (your name on the title) you can do it, if it’s not loud enough to annoy the neighbors (or your parents).

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Because there aren’t any good reasons

Once it’s in your name and you’re paying the insurance and buying the gas,

Then you can put on your wanna be ricer exhaust.

Don’t forget to put the 22" tires and the wing on the back.


As a follow on, I suggest that you leave the car in your parent’s name to keep insurance down, even if they sell or give it to you. Insurance for any young man or woman will be much higher than for an older adult.

Once it’s yours, do with it as you like. Have you heard the same engine as in the Xterra with the exhaust you are interested in? I mean in person, not on line. See if you can find one and go for a ride. Listen to it when you stand near it and it’s revved. Do you still like it?

Tuned exhaust systems on cars back in the 70’s was a good way to get some better performance cheap with a little bit a labor. Today with computer controlled vehicles and catalytic convertors and O2 sensors and many other sensors monitoring the vehicle…there is little to zero gain in a performance exhaust no matter what the manufacturer of the pipes is telling you.

It’s very simple…it’s their car…their rules. Be and adult and live with it. When you grow up you’ll understand the importance of that stance.


Why are you telling me this ? I am not asking about putting anything on someone’s vehicle.


… and what they are telling potential customers is frequently a fantasy.

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