Prototyping The New 2020 Corvette C8 Exhaust System with TJ Hunt

The new 2020 Corvette was a highly anticipated debut and now as the very first production units are reaching their owners, MagnaFlow’s research and development begins. Our friend and YouTuber TJ Hunt just arrived from his 2,500-mile journey back from picking up his brand new Ceramic Grey Z51 Corvette. He stopped by to assist with our Corvette C8 development program.

Co-op Consumer Development Program

As you may know, MagnaFlow occasionally teams up with fans, consumers and media friends to participate in our Cooperative Consumer Development program. This collaborative program allows us to get input from the automotive enthusiast lifestyles and owner impressions of our newest exhaust systems and prototypes. Over the past week, we are measuring up the first release production C8 Corvette and compared our findings to the performance data shared with us through our existing OE relationships. 

Phase 1: Scanning & Prototyping

Our Metrology department wasted no time in measuring up the vehicle and taking the car apart for immediate scanning and digitization. With TJ and his buddy Calvin on site to assist, we began overlying some of our prototype designs and comparing fitment with the original part that had just been removed.

 Having seen enough to know the sample designs should fit, TJ was eager to drop the stock muffler and hear the unmuffled sound of the new LT2 motor.

Phase 2: Sound Engineering & Fabrication

As our development team moved on to begin fabrication and bending of the new prototypes, we fired up the initial design system to hear the level of sound and quality. Comparing the Single muffler with internal Tru-x to the open exhaust sound we now had some direction on the amount of sound suppression and sound character the LT2 and new header design had. The OE catalytic converters do quite a bit of sound deadening which allows for the fairly small but intricate stock muffler design.

Phase 3: Developing with stock valves

The stock design incorporates 2 sets of valves: one for normal 8 cylinder operation or 4 cylinder operation sound control and another for Track / Sport or Touring sound levels. In developing the MagnaFlow system, retention of the factory valve operation is critical. TJ commented that the ability to produce both a mild and aggressive exhaust note was a must-have feature. The option of having the sound you want and when you want it is something the most discerning customers will expect with their upgraded exhaust systems.

“…the sound you want and when you want it.”

- TJ Hunt, YouTuber

Phase 4: Finishing Touches

While wrapping the final prototype exhaust design, TJ’s preferences were incorporated into the size and finish of the new tips. “Carbon fiber just works,” TJ said. “The dry carbon look is perfect.” Tip selection is one of the aesthetic elements that MagnaFlow recognizes as being one of the most important, as they are what everyone sees once they hear the rumble of the exhaust drive away. Gotta sound good; gotta look good.

C8 Exhaust Tips

Next Steps – Optimizing Performance

Our design team was happy to have TJ let us borrow his new Vette for validation and we always appreciate getting the input of an actual Corvette owner. We have more work to do in the powertrain evaluation and power development department. We extensively test our prototypes to evaluate and leverage more dyno time to refine the exhaust to maximize the most power we can.  More coming as we strive to build the best quality, sound and performance for the new 2020 C8 Corvette exhaust system.


Watch TJ Hunt's footage: