Now that we've sorted out all of our '02 C5's minor mechanical issues, it's time to get busy with some basic performance modifications. The intake tract is usually a good place to start if you're looking to strap on some extra power without delving into your engine's internal components. Based on numerous positive reviews and an eminently reasonable price tag (around $950), we decided to start with one of FAST's 92mm LSX intake manifolds.

For our baseline dyno testing, we contacted Enhanced Street Performance Inc. (ESP) owners Dave Brady and Greg Gemme. Their shop had been mentioned on the Corvette Forum in an extremely positive light, and, coupled with its proximity to this author's house, it seemed like the natural place to go. Getting right to work, ESP performed some pulls, suggested a few fuel-system-maintenance items (see "Fuel for Thought," Sep. '10), and followed up with another round of testing once our LS1's FI setup was back in peak condition. Brady and Gemme were great to work with, and even took the time to explain what kind of power gains we could expect from our new intake. (As we'll see in our next installment, they were spot-on with their prediction.)

This month, we begin our installation with a look into what it takes to remove the OEM parts and prep the engine for its new mouthpiece. Believe it or not, the install itself takes very little in the way of time. And while it may look daunting, anyone with a set of GM Service Manuals (available from Corvette Central and other large Vette-parts retailers) and the correct tools should be able to have his or her car up and running in a weekend or less. With that, let's get our C5 going faster and breathing easier.

Editor's Note: Since this story was written, FAST has replaced the 92mm LSX with a 102mm version. This new intake is also compatible with the LS1 engine and should perform at least as well as its predecessor in that application.