Most of car enthusiasts don’t get to modify their cars. For some, it’s just too expensive, others don’t have support from family members, but if you’re one of the lucky ones who can actually modify their car, here are some important things you should know about tuning. First things first – plan your upgrades and do it one step at a time. The worst thing you can do is to start upgrading one part, and move on to the next without finishing.
Upgrade your intake system
The main goal when upgrading your intake system is to let the air in without or with minimum restrictions. Stock intake systems are made to let enough air in and to restrict dust from entering the engine. Aftermarket air filters, for example, let more air in, and stop even more dust particles from entering the engine. A naturally aspirated car can gain up to 10 horse power just by changing the stock air filter for a new aftermarket performance air filter.
Do a full service
This is a common mistake by many car owners, including myself. Before you start upgrading anything, be sure that your car is completely serviced and without any faulty parts. More power can cause serious problems if your car isn’t perfect, so make sure you have a healthy base to start from. By changing your oil, filters, belts and pulleys, you will be sure that your car will run smoothly. You could even feel a difference in performance when you service it, so start from there.
Upgrade your exhaust system
Upgrading the intake as well as the exhaust system will let your car breathe in and out more freely. With less restrictions, the car will have more power. Stock exhaust systems are usually made in a way to reduce noise and CO2, but it restricts airflow as well. With an upgraded exhaust system, airflow is not restricted as much, and the engine can breathe out freely. The sound the car will make after upgrading is just a bonus.
This type of performance upgrade is getting cheaper and more available by the day. Although the performance boost is better on diesel cars, it’s a great investment. More and more tuning companies offer plug & play tuning chips for a lot less money than you may think. With an investment of around 150-200€, you can get an instant power boost of 30% and 15% better fuel economy. People who drive more than 20.000km per year will have a return of investment in little more than 12 months. Sounds too good to be true, but it’s possible.