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So there is a huge debate that is going on in my mind. I have a 2006 Ford Fusion SE 5 Speed Manual and I want to get it to "breathe" a bit better. I would love to add some MPG and while Im at it, some more Horsepower. Now I know that I didnt buy a sports car and it is not capable of being totally suped up and I know that either of these products will add tons of extra performance. But, I really am debating whether or not to get the K&N Drop In Air Filter or the Steeda Cold Air Intake Kit. Can anyone please give me their opinon and possibly first hand knowledge with either of these? I know that the Steeda CAI Kit is a bit pricy for the performance gain it will give me, but pretend that money is not an object here. What would the Steeda Kit do differently than the K&N filter? What info could you guys give me out there....Thanks alot! I will look forward for some info! 8)
 

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I have an SEL V-6 mated to an automatic but I believe my experience may be relevant (and possibly helpful). The combination of the
Steeda CAI and SCT tunes will render your Fusion considerably more responsive and therefore pleasurable to drive. If at present you
can afford only one mod I would recommend the SCT tuner. Its immediate effect will suprise you but your endeavors will not stop there; you will purchase the Steeda CAI in short order and finally a less restrictive catback exhaust (I recommend Magnaflow). I am quite pleased with my car's performance thus modified and I NEVER purchased a K&N panel filter. Good luck.
 

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The K&N will filter less than a stock paper filter, but its reusable and as you said, will let the car breathe more in.
The Steeda CAI will also do that, but it will also cool the air that enters the engine, as well as give you more air to the engine and to the MAF as a cone filter can retrieve air from a greater area.
 

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[quote author=Crystallas link=topic=76918.msg1393124#msg1393124 date=1178608567]
The Steeda CAI will also do that, but it will also cool the air that enters the engine, as well as give you more air to the engine and to the MAF as a cone filter can retrieve air from a greater area.
[/quote]
I disagree with that it will cool the air that enters the engine. Why? Because the "tube" that speeda makes is made out of aluminum which transfers heat much better then plastic(the stock piece). Also if you look here
http://www.fordfusionclub.com/index.php?topic=70698.0
At the picture of it installed it does NOT block the air from the engine compartment very much at all(look towards the front of the car). So air heated from the radiator will enter the engine more easily. The best thing that the speeda unit has going for it is it filter because it allows more air to pass through it then the K&N, but lets face it, your intake is much like an exhaust, or even water hose for that matter, it will only flow as much as it's least restrictive point. The MAF sensor housing, or the throttle body is the most restrictive part of the i4 fusion's intake.
Plus on top of that, if you had the Speeda unit and live in a dusty area you will pull more dusty into the filter through the engine compartment.
Even though you said price shouldn't be the issue, I'm concluding that it is. Therefore, I would go with K&N, but only because of price. Now if they were the same price, or price truly wasn't an issure, I would buy the Speeda unit and customize shroud around the filter so that it blocked the air from coming from the engine compartment by extending shroud further towards the front of the car.

[quote author=fusion66 link=topic=76918.msg1393021#msg1393021 date=1178601707]
I have an SEL V-6 mated to an automatic but I believe my experience may be relevant (and possibly helpful). The combination of the
Steeda CAI and SCT tunes will render your Fusion considerably more responsive and therefore pleasurable to drive. If at present you
can afford only one mod I would recommend the SCT tuner. Its immediate effect will suprise you but your endeavors will not stop there; you will purchase the Steeda CAI in short order and finally a less restrictive catback exhaust (I recommend Magnaflow). I am quite pleased with my car's performance thus modified and I NEVER purchased a K&N panel filter. Good luck.

[/quote]

I have the SCT unit on order for my I4 fusion and can let you know how that goes later. But from what I've heard I would have to agree that the SCT tuner is the best bang for this car you can get. Just if you get it keep in mind that the stock tires on the SE are only rated fro 118MPH.

I hope my input helped, and note that I'm not trying to diss the Speeda unit, I just personally think it's not worth the money between what you get and what you pay for. We are all here for fun, and to help people. That's why you have many opinions from many people. The saying two heads are better then one applies here. Oh, and check out my new quote below, tell me what you think of it.
 

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The topic or question concerning hot air entering an engine with an open air intake vs. a closed air box (i.e., stock system, volant, etc.) has been debated quite a bit over on the www.Fordtruckworld.com board in the past.

Those of us that purchased a CAI like the Steeda system for our trucks initially worried about the hot air entering with or without a heat shield. I, for one, ran the AirForceOne instake tube with the S&B open end air filter on my truck without any heat shield and it flowed more air than the stock air box (per dyno results by AF1). Discussion on the topic by knowledgeable persons identified that at 35 mph a vacuum is created on any given vehicle which removes the "hot air" from underneath the hood and allowing a cooler air intake. If memory serves me correctly, as much as 10 degrees cooler would be the air temperature entering the air intake/engine. However, sitting at idle (i.e., stoplights, etc.) or when in traffic at slower speeds, the heated air from underneath the hood would then be an issue while not as much from a closed intake system.

The Steeda CAI should provide an increased air flow capacity than the stock air box with a K&N filter. How much better? Steeda advertises 6-7 hp increase (based on their test with the Focus) while K&N advertises, what 5 hp increase? Again referring back to the trucks, dyno tests results revealed generally only 1-2 hp increases with the K&N and the Volant intake systems vs. 5-7 with an open CAI. The problem associated with the dyno testing was sitting on the dyno didn't allow the vacumm theory to be created although fans were utilized to blow air on the front of the vehicle during the test. This was an article written in the Ten magazine "FordTruckWorld" about 2 years ago.

I would have gone with the Steeda system, however I did not want to hear the moan of the open air intake.
 

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I have the K&N drop in and i did it at more of less the same time as my muffler, and air silencer delete. Doing all 3 of those things withina few days did make a little diff. I was getting 22 to 23 MPG with about half city and half hwy. Now i am getting 24 to 26 driving the same route. For me price was a big factor. I love the look of the steeda and the sound but for $200 shipped i am not going to get it. I am sure i have close to the performance and sound of the steeda now so unless someone makes a knock off for $50 i will keep my K&N.
 

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why not? you wouldn't neccessarily need the one tube but atleast you could put the airfilter in the fender wall, the main tube i was interested in is the one with the maf hole to put the sensor in and on the other end is a grommet to put the oil line in. this is a way better option than the steeda intake because it stops you from using the black plastic tubing with the upper air resonator and all thos ripples which disrupt the air flow as it enters the throttle body.
 

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[quote author=cedub69 link=topic=76918.msg1427954#msg1427954 date=1179791032]
why not? you wouldn't neccessarily need the one tube but atleast you could put the airfilter in the fender wall, the main tube i was interested in is the one with the maf hole to put the sensor in and on the other end is a grommet to put the oil line in. this is a way better option than the steeda intake because it stops you from using the black plastic tubing with the upper air resonator and all thos ripples which disrupt the air flow as it enters the throttle body.
[/quote]

From what i have read others have tried to use this kit and the MAF is in the wrong location so you will get a check engine light as soon as you start the car. a true Cold Air Intake is better than a Short Ram Intake with a heat shield yes. But until someone makes one for the Fusion the Steeda is the only thing out there.
 

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i would like that short ram but it's tooooooooo much money.....steeda is smoking CRACK selling it at 2 bills :p
 
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