Welcome to the world of car enthusiasts! Are you looking for ways to improve your vehicle's performance? If so, you've probably come across two popular options: cold air intakes and short ram intakes. Both modifications promise better horsepower and torque, but which one is right for your car? In this blog post, we'll break down the pros and cons of each option so that you can make an informed decision. So buckle up and let's dive into the top difference between a cold air intake versus a short ram!

What is a Cold Air Intake?

A cold air intake (CAI) is a performance modification that replaces the factory airbox and restrictive air filter with a larger, less restrictive filter and tubing. The goal of this modification is to increase the amount of cool, dense air flowing into the engine.

The key feature of a CAI is its location in relation to the engine. It's designed to be located away from heat sources such as exhaust manifolds and radiators so that it can draw in cooler outside air instead of hot engine bay air.

By increasing airflow, a cold air intake & Short RAM allows for more oxygen to reach the combustion chamber resulting in better fuel efficiency and increased horsepower. Many car enthusiasts appreciate how easy it is to install a CAI on their own without any special tools or skills required.

However, there are some downsides associated with installing one as well. For instance, if you live in an area with heavy rainfall or snowfall, your CAI could suck up water which would cause significant damage to your engine. In addition, installing one may also lead voiding your vehicle’s warranty so make sure you do proper research before purchasing!

What is a Short Ram?

A Short Ram is another type of aftermarket air intake system that replaces the stock air intake. This modification essentially shortens the length of the intake pipe, which allows for a quicker and more direct flow of air into your engine.

Short Ram intakes are generally cheaper than Cold Air Intakes but do not offer the same level of performance gains. They tend to work best on smaller engines with high revving capabilities since they allow for quick bursts of acceleration.

One drawback to a Short Ram is that it can suck in hot air from under the hood, which can decrease overall horsepower. However, this issue can be resolved by adding additional heat shields or purchasing an enclosed cold-air box.

A Short Ram may provide some slight performance improvements over the stock intake system and is a cost-effective option for those looking to improve throttle response and sound without breaking the bank.

Pros and Cons of a Cold Air Intake

A cold air intake is an aftermarket modification designed to enhance the performance of a car's engine. Here are some of the pros and cons associated with installing a cold air intake.


- Increased horsepower: A cold air intake allows more oxygen-rich, cooler air to enter the combustion chamber which can result in increased horsepower.

- Improved engine sound: Many drivers enjoy the deeper, throatier sound that comes from a car equipped with a cold air intake system.

- Better fuel efficiency: By allowing more efficient combustion, it's possible for cars equipped with a cold air intake to experience improved gas mileage.


- Risk of hydrolocking: Because they draw in colder outside air, there is an increased risk of water entering the engine during wet driving conditions. This can cause severe damage to your car's engine and should be avoided at all costs.

- Potential Check Engine Light (CEL) issues: Some drivers have reported experiencing CEL issues after installing a cold air intake. This may require further modifications or tuning by a professional mechanic to resolve.

While there are some risks involved with installing a cold air intake system on your vehicle, many drivers find that the benefits make it worth considering as an upgrade for their ride.

Pros and Cons of a Short Ram

A Short Ram intake is a type of air intake system that works by drawing in cooler air from the engine bay. This is achieved by replacing the factory airbox with a shorter, more direct pipe that allows for increased airflow to the engine.

One of the main advantages of a Short Ram intake is its simplicity and ease of installation. Unlike Cold Air Intakes, which often require extensive modifications to fit properly, Short Rams are relatively easy to install and can be completed in just a few hours.

Another advantage of Short Ram intakes is their affordability. Compared to other types of aftermarket intakes like Turbo or Supercharger kits, they are much more budget-friendly while still providing noticeable performance gains.

However, one disadvantage of using a Short Ram intake is its susceptibility to heat soak. Since it draws in air from inside the engine bay where temperatures can get quite high, there’s an increased risk that hot air will enter your engine rather than cool air.

Additionally, because it doesn't have as much room for filtration compared to other systems such as Cold Air Intakes or Factory Air Boxes, there's an increased chance for dirt or debris entering your engine causing damage over time if not cleaned regularly.

Ultimately whether you choose between Cold Air Intake and Short Ram depends on what kind driving you want out from your car and how important filtration level versus higher horsepower output when choosing between these two options.

Which is better for your car?

When it comes to choosing between a cold air intake and a short ram for your car, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The decision depends on several factors such as your driving habits, the type of vehicle you own, and your budget.

If you're looking for increased horsepower and improved engine sound, then a cold air intake might be the better choice. This system draws in cool air from outside the engine bay which helps increase combustion efficiency resulting in more power being produced by the engine. However, this added performance boost comes at a higher cost than short rams.

On the other hand, if you're seeking an inexpensive upgrade that still provides some benefits such as enhanced throttle response and quicker acceleration times while not significantly altering stock sounds or appearance then go with a short ram. It's also ideal for those who live in warmer climates since they won't experience any heat soak issues like those with colder weather do when using cold air intakes.

Ultimately, it all boils down to personal preference and priorities. So before making any decisions about which system is best suited for your needs consider these options carefully!


After comparing the pros and cons of both cold air intakes and short ram, it is clear that choosing between them depends on your personal preferences.

If you're looking for maximum performance gains and don't mind a bit of extra noise, then a cold air intake might be the best option for you. On the other hand, if you want something that's simple to install and won't affect your car's emissions system, then a short ram may be more suitable.

Ultimately, it's important to consider what works best for your specific vehicle model and driving style before making a decision. Consult with an experienced mechanic or automotive professional to help determine which option will provide the most benefits