It's one of the oldest horsepower tricks in the book: A low-restriction, free-breathing intake system makes power. The late-model Z28 is designed to meet performance parameters that have little to do with how much power is put to the rear wheels. Noise and fuel economy are two of these performance benchmarks. For those of us who'd gladly trade a little more intake noise (heck, we like the noise in the first place) for quicker throttle response and a lower e.t., SLP Performance Parts offers several components that, when used in combination, can add at least 20 rear-wheel horsepower to your Z, whether it's box-stock or has a stroker 382 like our cover and feature car has.
"That's a pretty conservative figure, we think," says Brian Reese, SLP's chief engineer. "Any LS1 car with these parts will make 20 more horses at the wheels. Depending on the exhaust system and any other tuning tweaks, you'll probably see more." Better still, they're parts that are so easy to install they almost redefine the term "bolt-on." Although the parts we'll install in this story are available separately, we suggest getting them all as a complete package. They work best together, and that starts with the less restrictive air cleaner box.
Unlike the stock box, which is designed as much to silence incoming air noise as it is to funnel the air, SLP's box has none of its muffling, restrictive baffles or chambers. It's just a simple, effective housing that covers SLP's low-restriction, reusable air filter. Backing that up is SLP's cold air scoop, which slips between the core support and the radiator. This stainless steel funnel directs air from beneath the front bumper directly into the bottom of the airbox. Because of the Camaro's bottom-breathing radiator rake, the scoop doesn't block any air to the radiator. It's a neat, simple, and effective piece.
We topped off the air intake upgrade with a new, larger-diameter mass air meter. SLP uses an 85mm (stock is 75mm) OE mass air meter for 6.0L truck engines, which is manufactured by General Motors supplier Delphi and recalibrated by SLP for the F-car (without the calibration, the engine wouldn't make any more power). SLP also supplies the necessary adaptor bellows and wire harness to plug the air meter into the Camaro.
Now that the engine breathes better, we need to make sure the air can get out better. We saw some interesting options at the SLP shop and we've included photos of them. The install of all the intake parts takes about an hour, maybe a little longer if you have fight to stretch and fit the stock bellows over the end of the mass air meter. Even those with limited wrenching talent will find these parts a breeze to install, easily accomplished in a garage or driveway.