In the automotive world, people customize their cars to make their very own. Talking customization, it depends on the person whether he/she wants function or it is the form (Aesthetics) that he/she prefers. But mostly in India, it is later that people are fond of.
Keeping that aside, the other set of people wants more function than the aesthetics from their cars. For those, seeking to increase the performance of their cars, here are 10 mods that actually increase your car’s performance.
Medium or Hard Compound Tyres
The black rubber on the rims is what that transfers the power down on the tarmac. It all depends on how that power gets down on the road. For instance, tyres come in various profiles and size, in the end, it’s what are you looking to do with your car. For you to know for a road car the two types of tyres are the medium compound tyres and hard compound tyres.
Of course, there are the all-weather tyres which we usually have on our cars from the factory. Then comes the slicks for those exciting track days to extract every juice from the engine but these tyres last reasonable less. So, to get the best of both worlds medium or hard compound tyres will do great.
Bigger Brakes & Braided Brake Lines
There is no denying the fact that cars come with a braking system from the factory (DUH). But why we are mentioning it in performance parts? you may ask. Well, there is more to the braking system than meets the eye. Talking about the basics the braking system includes the brake lines, brake pads, and brake rotors. Upgrading any of the three will have a drastic change on the braking performance.
Let’s dive into slight details. The brakes have a better bite when the brake lines are branded. This prevents the bulging of the brake lines, because of which the brakes feel spongy and they lack confidence. Upgrading the brake pads and bigger brake rotors is a slightly expensive affair but will have inspiring braking performance.
Performance High Flow Air Filter
There is a saying in the automotive community, ‘ better the car breaths, better is the car’s performance’. It is the air filter, from where the air enters the intake manifold and the stock air filter is designed to restrict some of the air entering the engine (Fuel Efficiency). Getting a better air filter that let’s more air inside the engine will have a slight difference if the car that has a closed-loop ECU. To extract the most out of the air filter, refer to the next point (ECU or Piggyback ECU).
ECU, here we are referring to the stand-alone ECU that is an expensive artefact. One can also get their existing ECU tuned for the specific purpose, that can be fuel economy, or performance, later one being the preference. But the ECU might or might not be tuneable, it all depends on the carmaker. The thing to keep in mind is that the ECU tuning is a must when installing a better intake (Air Filter) and exhaust system.
If you want to play a safe bet and do not want to void the manufacturer’s warranty, Piggyback ECU can be right for you. That said, Piggyback ECU is usually plugged in the vehicle OBD port and is tuned for a specific vehicle. This usually fools the vehicle’s main ECU by giving false signals to the sensors. This urges the stock ECU to adjust according to those false signals. In turn, enhancing the performance of the vehicle or increasing the fuel economy.
Free Flow Exhaust System
Exhaling is one of the crucial parts of the engine’s respiration. Well, a stock exhaust system has a lot going for it. The exhaust gases from the engine have to pass through various catalytic converters and different baffles before those gases are expelled into the air. Well, these obstacles make exhaust gases less harmful to the environment. Due to these intrusions, some of the performance is hampered. An aftermarket exhaust has a world of a difference in the performance and the throttle response also is crisp. Many aftermarket exhausts also comply with the emission norms with less performance drop.
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In spite of the sold chassis, the car has slight flex when tackling corners at high speeds. This reduces the drivability of the vehicle and also hampers the confidence to take sharp corners with ease. To overcome the flex and make the ride taut and still, one needs to install bracing. What are bracings? well, these are the additional members that run across the width of the vehicle that can be mounted underneath the car or under the hood onto the suspension mounting. This allows the car to have controlled flex making the ride rigid.
Iridium Spark Plugs
It’s okay to assume that the fancy spark plug with 2-3 prongs will enhance the performance of the engine. But let me tell you that it will not increase the performance. There is only one function that the Spark Plus has to perform, it ignites the charge (air-fuel mixture). Or in technical terms initiate the flame front. Be it 3-4 prongs they run on the same voltage and have the same distance.
The only thing that expensive spark plug process is the longevity. A conventional spark plug gets worn with time and a worn-out spark plug will definitely hamper the performance of the motor. That said, an expensive or performance spark plug will sure last you longer and will not hamper the performance of the engine in the long run.
Stiffer and Lower Suspension
The suspension in a vehicle is to provide comfort, Sure! The prime function of the suspension is to set all the 4 wheels of the car grounded on the road. And usually, in India, the suspension is set towards the softer side. But we automobile enthusiasts are ready to compromise on the comfort for performance. So, first and foremost thing to upgrade in a car to make the handling, even more, indulging is a stiffer suspension.
The Suspension consists of two things, a spring and a damper. One can go with the complete suspension replacement and also replacing just the springs could be an option. Because of the stiffer springs, the slow and fast rebound setting both are hampered and most important of all it controls the body roll and the weight transfer. Installing sticky tyres without dragging a better suspension is of no use. A controlled body roll lead to better control and also inspires more confidence when taking fast corners.
Stiffer Sway bars or Anti-roll Bars
With the upgraded suspension we are halfway into reducing the body roll and weight transfer. Next comes the better and improved sway bars. For you to know, it is a large handle bar shaped bar that is connected across the front and the rear wheels.
The sway bar control whether the car will understeer or oversteer. But generally speaking, an FWD car will tend to understeer and to reduce that a stiffer sway bar is the way to go. Similarly, a stiffer sway bar at the rear will reduce oversteer in an RWD.
High Octane Fuel
If the vehicle you possess, desires High Octane Fuel then you have no choice. But if the car is a road car that is made to commute daily, high octane equals money drain as it will not have a major difference in the performance. One should not confuse between high octane or premium fuel. Because here in India premium fuel and the conventional fuel have no difference in their octane number. Those are the additives and detergents that make the premium fuel cost more. The High octane fuel is mainly for the high compression engines. For you to know octane number is the maximum pressure and temperature the fuel can withstand before igniting.
Weight Reduction | Lose Spare Wheel Out
One thing to perform on your vehicle to reduce lap times or overall power to weight ratio is weight reduction. What can you do? You may ask. Well for one, the spare wheel weights about 10-15kgs, the rear seats can also be removed. In the end, for an extensive mod, one can completely strip the interior down. It all depends on what you want, a people’s hauler or a track car. DUH!
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