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Retro-fit Audi Active Exhaust system

JLX Apr 8, 2018

  1. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Not to everyone's taste but I was looking to move to dual-exit exhaust and ended up picking up a new Audi Active Exhaust system off the bay for cheaper than the cost of fabricating a exhaust locally! Although fake it does give off a real nice low V6 rumble which doesn't sound over the top. It's a 2.0TDI underneath so was never going to sound too mean anyway + the car is now twin-exit.

    The sound of the exhaust can be controlled through Audi Drive Select within the MMI which is great. The car didn't have ADS by default but was added through Carista. Even when done this way switching between Comfort/Auto/Dynamic changes the volume and exhaust note, in Comfort mode it appears to be completely disabled which is great for longer journeys, etc.

    I purchased a gloss black rear valance found on the 3.0TDI Black Edition Plus. It took me a day to lay the wiring harness from the exhaust through to the canbus and then to remove out the old exhaust and put in the active system.

    Excuse the not so great photos, will take some better ones for the gallery.

    Before:
    [​IMG]

    After:
    [​IMG]

    First test drive:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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  3. Buxton2901

    Buxton2901 Well-Known Member

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    Excellent work..
    I have just purchased a bitdi A6 and the active exhaust is great imo
    Will look into enabling changing the sound with carista.

    Love the black valance too.
    I'm looking to spray the one on my A6 gloss black

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  4. JG51 AUD

    JG51 AUD Well-Known Member Team Glacier TFSI Owners Group Team V6 Gold Supporter Audi S5 Black Edition quattro Supercharged

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    Great job, looks really good, can I suggest a set of black rings on the boot would finish it off nicely.

    JG
     
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  5. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Many thanks. Yes the Dynamic setting in ADS is the best imo!
     
  6. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Thanks! Yes deffo playing with the idea and tints.
     
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  7. JG51 AUD

    JG51 AUD Well-Known Member Team Glacier TFSI Owners Group Team V6 Gold Supporter Audi S5 Black Edition quattro Supercharged

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    Yes, IMO tints are a must on a white car. :thumbs up:

    JG
     
  8. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Good job!

    ...any chance of a video so we can hear it for ourselves? :)


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  9. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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  10. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Hi

    I have been meaning to get you a video. :) Will do it hopefully this weekend.

    I got the entire exhaust with middle silencer unit for the 2.0TDI off eBay for 599. It was a bargain to be honest. There were two in clearance. I will see if I can find the exact auction but it was listed as Audi Exhaust System and is a genuine Audi unit. It looks very similar to the Kufatec unit but there are some limitations on the Audi variant like it cuts out around 2300 rpm. This hasn't been a problem for me as I don't rev excessively but for 86 quid you can send your Audi exhaust controller off to Kufatec and they will remove the restriction and allow to connect in their device which you can control the exhaust sound via phone.

    If you can get the Audi unit for cheap I would personally go down this road. Its deemed an option on the car also.
     
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  11. JLX

    JLX Member

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  13. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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  14. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Does anyone have a link to the installation guide so that i can get my head around it before this arrives? :)
     
  15. cbeadle2508

    cbeadle2508 Member

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    Where did you get your RS4 gloss black grille from? Has it got the parking sensor options and did it come with the Audi badge? Cheers


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  16. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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  17. JLX

    JLX Member

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    I got it from the Bay, it came with black rings originally but swapped them for chrome. The chrome rings were also available on eBay as the original rings were slightly too small.

    Up to you but I thought removing the centre console was too excessive to lay the wiring harness. I find they never go back the same. My harness was routed under the boot carpet then under the rear bench and through the passenger side carpet. It is easier with a cable guide to push the cable underneath the carpet. You can come up underneath the passenger seat and into the side of the centre console as it lifts up on the side. Once the glove box is removed (which is quite simple) you can secure the cable by pulling it up further into the centre console. Hard to explain but you'll probably find out if you want to do it without removing the entire centre console. You can take it under the passenger carpet and up behind the glove box which I've seen some A5 owners do.
     
  18. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Thanks for the tip! My kit arrived today so I’ll try to get the electrics done this or next weekend so I can get it booked in to have the exhaust fitted, I’ll update this thread accordingly :)

    First thing I noticed was the size of the exhaust tips, are they same size as the original ones?

    Btw, is the CAN BUS accessible once the glovebox has been removed?

    I presume that the cable isn’t long enough to run down the passenger side of the car, along the door sills? (Opposite side to the LHD fitment)


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  19. JLX

    JLX Member

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    They are the same size as the 3.0TDI as they fit the 3.0TDI rear valance perfectly.

    You remove the glove box only and it is accessible from there. There is a single screw for the canbus and it slides out of a supporting piece of metal so can be easily accessed. I didn’t even need to disconnect any cables from the glove box just undid the screws and dropped it down into the footwell carefully.

    Took me a couple of reads of the manual to fully understand the harness. The connection in the boot next to the ground point goes through one of the relays on the drivers side and not the fuse as first assumed when reading. Although 2011 and older models do seem to connect to a fuse also.

    Because the harness needs to come back on itself to be on the passenger side I don’t think it would be quite long enough or it would be very tight.
     
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  20. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Thanks :)

    Btw, does "Engine Sound" option show up in your Drive Select?
     
  21. JLX

    JLX Member

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    No it doesn’t! Wish it did as Dynamic isn’t as fuel efficient but the exhaust sounds the best. It may be possible to add it via VAGCOM but no joy with Carista. If you find out let me know, I’m thinking of the Kufatec upgrade on the controller.
     
  22. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Ahaa, that’s interesting because according to the kufatec site it should show up. Maybe it just needs coding with VCDS.

    I have VCDS so I’ll give it a go ;)


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  23. JLX

    JLX Member

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    I just picked up a Kufatec Sound Booster Pro module with the wireless remote control accessory. I had an offer of £150 accepted on eBay for the two which is a nice saving on RRP as they are listed as new also:

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Kufatec-Sound-Booster-Pro-Remote-For-Audi-A4-8K-A5-8T/162989601241

    The wireless remote control will be useful to change between different sound profiles of the exhaust from the driver's seat or turn off the sound altogether. This will override ADS allowing to still use Comfort or Auto engine modes. I think you still need to pay for their software though to change profiles but will confirm once it's delivered.

    The controller module removes the 2300rpm restriction and boosts the sound but it still doesn't look like there is access to the app/software. The Audi controller and the Kufatec module still need to be sent to Kufatec under part 41174 where they apply a firmware upgrade to allow the software to work.

    If you have an older Kufatec controller module (HW 29/15 or before) you also need to pay for a hardware upgrade (which is currently £35) where it looks like a USB port is added to the device to allow it connect to the mapping software - so something else to look out for although I made sure of this by confirming the HW number on the controller before purchasing.

    $$$$
     
  24. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Progress update from my side:
    Loom now in place and connected to powertrain ECU, power and ground.
    I decided to extend the CAN H + L part of the loom by 170cm, install as per instructions but instead of removing the centre console, I ran the extended part of the loom along the left hand side of the car.

    I ran out of time to mount the controller as it getting dark outside so will continue where I left off tomorrow. I am looking forward to laying the sound actuators in the boot and seeing how they sound, I’ll try to make a small video in case of any interest to anyone :)

    One thing I found whilst digging around on the internet for others installations, on a French Audi forum someone claims that they were able to connect VCDS directly to the Engine Sound System / Active Exhaust module, but needed to make a special loom for it as VCDS is unable to access the Powertrain ECU directly, and were then able to make the changes that Kufatec are charging money for, such as RPM and Speed limiter.

    I will try to translate the info into something readable and share on this thread for others.

    I have controller: HW09 SW17, I also read that this is the latest version of the controller and doesn’t have the RPM/Speed limitation, can anyone else confirm?


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  25. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Good job!

    I just checked mine and it is also HW09 SW17 but definitely has the RPM limitation.

    Very interesting there is a potential VCDS override, this is probably all Kufatec are doing to the Audi controller.

    My Kufatec Power Booster Pro module arrived today and was easily plugged directly into the Audi module. The RPM limitation has now gone and it has definitely increased the dBA of the exhaust. It's still not overpowering which is good but can be better heard.

    The Kufatec wireless remote control accessory that connects directly into the Kufatec module, this turns the exhaust sound on and off but does not change exhaust note profiles. At this stage it's really no useful than drive select other than I could use Dynamic but still have the exhaust sound off. So it does still look like more money to Kufatec to make an additional change to their module as well as the Audi controller to get the different sound profiles (as they request both units are sent to them).
     
  26. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    I managed to find a spare hour to test the sound actuators in the boot so that I could make sure that both outputs from the controller were working, here is the video:



    I didn’t get a chance to see if it cuts out above 2k rpm but it definitely does cut out when you come off the accelerator peddle.

    The car is booked in at Audi here in Prague on the 14th for fitting of the exhaust, I’d do it myself but don’t have access to a ramp or pipe cutter, I’ll update this thread with the results of my visit to Audi :)

    If I decide that I need extra boost or control then I’ll first try accessing the controller via a custom loom with VCDS, thanks for providing detailed info on the aftermarket solutions.



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  27. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Looks great!

    From the manual it was only a very specific model that required pipe cutting. It just bolted straight in on my B8.5 A4 2.0TDI. If you managed the loom you will definitely manage the exhaust as it was a lot easier but at least it's less hassle done through Audi.
     
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  28. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    I’d be interested to know if the 2k RPM limitation is removed even with the aftermarket module disconnected, that would confirm that some settings were changed on the controller and could mean these settings are changeable via VCDS direct access ;)


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  29. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    I wish you were right, the manual confirms that the pipes need cutting on the V6/3.0 TDI models, so I will have to patiently wait for Audi, most unlike me!

    [​IMG]



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  30. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Update:

    Active Exhaust fitted today by my local Audi dealership, they even gave it a full valet, 50 quid well spent :)

    Before:
    [​IMG]

    After:
    [​IMG]

    I’m not happy with the alignment, I need to have a look to see if I can adjust it somehow, anyone know if the exhaust mounts adjust to allow repositioning?

    The sound is good, much nicer, very happy.

    They installed the reducer into the mid section of the exhaust before the pipe splits into two, does anyone know why this is required?
    Perhaps to retain back pressure because the new rear silencers are noticeably smaller than the factory fit items.


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  31. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Also adding some photos from the install of the loom so that you can see the cable route that I took to avoid messing around with the centre console.

    (After extending CAN +/- part of the loom)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


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  32. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Looks amazing!

    Yes if you jack up the back of the car you can reach the rear exhaust hanger for the muffler/resonator, it was 10mm from memory. If you loosen it you can move the exhaust/re-position and re-tighten. You may need to loosen the clamp further down if it requires a lot of adjustment.

    One thing I found was that the kit only comes with one exhaust hanger and you use the one already present on the left-side. Because the hanger is rubber it can drop over time and my left side was hanging slightly lower than the right, you can actually see it in my picture in the original post. I have since adjusted it by moving the exhaust tip slightly. The guide recommended only one pop rivet to secure the tip which I'm glad I did as I was able to re-position the tip slightly by tugging downwards on it carefully and they both perfectly match in height now. If I was to do it again I would probably have bought a new hanger for the left-side and not re-used the old one.

    I was under the impression the middle silencer that came with the kit was for the 2.0 engine only but don't hold me to that. I read on another forum where they had put the exhaust on without this middle box and the car threw an exhaust pressure fault.

    BTW I will test removing out the Booster Pro module to see if the RPM limit is still there or not shortly (haven't got round to it this week).
     
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  34. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Thanks for the reply :)

    It’s interesting how different your kit is to mine, mine had no centre silencer included and the tips are secured each by two rivers.

    Thanks for the tip regarding adjustment, I’ll give it a go and let you know how I get on, I may end up purchasing some new rubber hangers to raise the whole system.

    Btw, does your left silencer hang down slightly lower compared to the right silencer? If you bend down behind the car, so they both hang down at the same level?

    Here are some photos of the right side, tell me if I need to reel in my OCD’s :D

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The installation guide states that it should be aligned correctly so I don’t think I’m expecting too much :)

    [​IMG]



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  35. JLX

    JLX Member

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    Hi,

    I took some pictures of how they are hanging. I would say my right-hand side and left-hand side hang around the same but they appear to be the same as your right-side so I wouldn't personally worry tbh. You could re-position them just by loosening the clamp but it's a pain because the riveted tips would probably need re-aligning also.

    Excuse dirty car:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    One other thing I did away from the manual was my tips aren't centre aligned, I turned them slightly so they protrude with the contour of the valance.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2018
  36. BenC00

    BenC00 Member

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    Thanks for the photos, looks great :)

    I’ll try over the weekend to align mine a little better, I think raising them should do the trick.


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