Short Ram vs Cold Air Intake: Which Is Right for Your Car?

Cold Intake Pro
6 min readApr 17, 2023

Are you looking to upgrade your car’s performance but not sure which type of intake to install? Short ram and cold air intakes are two popular options, each with their own unique features and benefits. Choosing the right one for your vehicle can make a significant difference in its power output and overall driving experience. In this blog post, we’ll explore the differences between short ram and cold air intakes, their pros and cons, which cars they’re best suited for, as well as step-by-step instructions on how to install them. So buckle up and let’s dive into this ultimate guide on Cold Air Intake Vs Short Ram!

What is a short ram intake?

A short ram intake is an aftermarket performance upgrade that replaces the factory airbox and intake tubing with a shorter, more direct path from the air filter to the engine. This type of intake system is designed to increase engine power by allowing more cool air to flow into the combustion chamber while reducing restrictions in airflow.

Compared to the stock airbox, which often has twists and turns that can impede airflow, a short ram intake offers a straighter and wider path for incoming air. By doing so, it allows for quicker throttle response and increased horsepower gains.

Short ram intakes are relatively easy to install as they require no major modifications or tuning after installation. They typically come with all necessary hardware and instructions for bolt-on installation.

However, one downside of using a short ram intake is its susceptibility to heat soak. Since it’s located near hot engine components, such as exhaust manifolds or headers, it can draw in hot air instead of cold outside air. This can lead to decreased performance gains on hotter days or during prolonged use.

Short ram intakes are best suited for drivers who prioritize quick throttle response over maximum horsepower gains and live in cooler climates where heat soak isn’t much of an issue.

What is a cold air intake?

A cold air intake is an aftermarket modification that replaces the stock air intake system in a car. The purpose of a cold air intake is to improve engine performance by allowing more cool, dense air into the engine. When you install a cold air intake, it draws cooler, denser outside air into your engine instead of hot air from under the hood.

The benefits of installing a cold air intake include increased horsepower and torque, improved throttle response, and better fuel efficiency. A cold air intake can also improve the overall sound of your vehicle by providing a deeper and more aggressive tone.

There are two types of cold-air intakes: open-element or enclosed box design. An open-element filter features an exposed cone-shaped element which sits within its own housing unit while enclosed designs have enclosures around the filter to isolate it from heat sources in order to keep incoming airflow cooler than surrounding temperatures.

However, there are some drawbacks to consider before installing one on your car such as potential damage caused by water ingestion during rainy weather conditions or hydroplaning situations whereby excess water enters through these systems leading to costly repairs for drivers who don’t take proper precautions like repositioning their filters periodically depending on climatic changes!

Pros and cons of each type of intake

Short ram intakes and cold air intakes are two popular aftermarket upgrades that car enthusiasts often consider. However, each type of intake has its own set of pros and cons to consider before making a decision.

Short ram intakes have shorter tubing than cold air intakes, which means they are less restrictive and allow for better throttle response. They also tend to be more affordable and easier to install. However, because the filter is located in the engine bay where it can draw in hot air from the engine compartment, short ram intakes may not provide as much power gains as cold air intakes.

On the other hand, cold air intakes draw cooler, denser outside air from behind or below the bumper through a longer intake tube into the engine. This results in increased horsepower and torque due to improved airflow efficiency. Cold air intakes also offer better fuel economy by allowing for a more complete combustion process while reducing emissions. However, installation may require additional modifications such as removing certain components or relocating sensors.

Ultimately, choosing between a short ram intake or a cold air intake will depend on your goals for performance improvements versus ease of installation and budget constraints. It’s important to do your research beforehand so you can make an informed decision that best fits your needs.

What type of car is each type of intake best for?

When it comes to deciding between a short ram intake and a cold air intake, the type of car you have can play a significant role in determining which one is best for you.

Short ram intakes are typically better suited for cars that primarily see city driving. This is because they provide improved throttle response at low RPMs, making them ideal for stop-and-go traffic situations. Additionally, short ram intakes tend to be less expensive than cold air intakes, so if you’re on a budget or don’t want to spend too much money on modifications, this may be the way to go.

On the other hand, if your car sees more high-speed highway driving or track use, a cold air intake may be the better choice. Cold air intakes bring in cooler and denser air from outside of the engine bay through longer piping and an insulated box or shield. This results in increased horsepower and torque due to improved airflow into the engine at higher RPMs.

Ultimately, when deciding between a short ram intake and a cold air intake for your car, it’s important to consider your driving habits and what type of performance gains you’re looking for.

How to install a cold air intake

Installing a cold air intake is not as difficult as you might think. Here are some simple steps to guide you through the process.

Firstly, make sure that your car’s engine is cool before starting the installation process. Next, locate the existing air box and remove it along with any attached hoses or clamps. Set these aside for later use.

Now, take out the new cold air intake kit and lay out all of its components to ensure that everything is present and accounted for. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer on how to install each part correctly.

The next step involves attaching the new intake pipe to both ends of your engine’s throttle body using appropriate clamps. Check that all connections are tight but not too tight which can damage them over time.

After this, connect any necessary sensors or adapters onto your vehicle’s mass airflow sensor (MAF) if needed according to instructions from manufacturers’ manual booklet.

Reconnect any hoses or clamps previously removed from your old airbox assembly into their respective positions on your new cold-air-intake setup making sure everything fits perfectly together without leaks!

How to install a short ram intake

Installing a short ram intake is a relatively simple process that can be done with just a few basic tools. Here’s how to do it:

First, locate the air filter housing in your engine bay and remove the old air intake system. This will typically involve undoing some clamps or screws and pulling out the old system.

Next, attach the new short ram intake pipe to the throttle body using a hose clamp. Make sure it’s tight enough so there are no leaks.

Then, attach any necessary brackets for support and install the air filter onto the end of the short ram intake pipe.

Reconnect any sensors or hoses that were disconnected during removal of your old air intake and double-check all connections before starting up your car.

Keep in mind that installation processes may vary slightly depending on your specific vehicle make and model. It’s always important to refer to manufacturer instructions or seek professional assistance if needed.


Ultimately, the decision between a cold air intake and a short ram intake will come down to personal preference, driving style, and the specific needs of your car. If you prioritize maximum power gains or live in an area with consistently hot weather, a cold air intake may be the better choice. However, if you want improved throttle response and don’t mind sacrificing some horsepower at high RPMs, then a short ram intake might be perfect for you.

Regardless of which type of intake you choose, make sure to follow proper installation instructions and take into account any necessary modifications to ensure optimal performance. With either option installed correctly on your vehicle, you can expect better airflow and increased engine efficiency — leading to improved overall driving experience Visit Here



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