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Old 07-18-2021, 08:57 PM   #1
427
 
Drives: Camaro
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Need 20 more reliable HP

I raced my car stock in the Big Bend open road race in the 140mph average class and did well with the stock engine averaging 143.9 all out on the 59 mile run down in the morning. On the morning run it hit 154mph top, but mostly would run 148-150 on most of the straights. I'm running the 150mph average class in October, so I need 160mph top speed ability. I think 15hp would likely get me 160, but 20hp would be better! I've looked at the Mishimoto intercooler and induction tube between the air box and turbo. Also thought about deleting the cat for the run. Currently the engine is stock (2020 6 speed stick) with only a thermostat change. I will be adding a trans cooler as it ran over 270F on both runs in April. Would the intercooler and intake tube be worth 20hp?


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Old 07-18-2021, 09:13 PM   #2
95TA - The Beast
 
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Regardless of what you do, you won't make any more power unless you get a tune.

Power output is tune limited in these cars. Regardless of the modifications, the computer will only allow the powertrain to put down what it wants it to.

Find a reliable tuner, or get a canned tune from a reputable tuner that will stand by their tune (ie, tell them what you want it for and make sure they will tell you that you will run safe and without issues for what you want to do).

I doubt you need to make any modifications outside of the tune. Just put a K&N filter in the stock airbox, get a good tune (personally, I recommend Trifecta) and you should be set for your goals. Couldn't be easier.
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Old 07-19-2021, 05:59 AM   #3
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Add a Flex Fuel kit and a tune. +80 to 100 HP.
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Old 07-19-2021, 06:49 AM   #4
buckwam
 
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How reliable is a tune from a reputable tuner? Has anyone had mechanical or electrical issues running a tune on an otherwise stock setup?
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Old 07-19-2021, 07:37 AM   #5
427
 
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This is what keeps me away from tuners! I'm sure if I can increase the flow of air the mass air meter will give me the fuel. I'm running 3000+ elevation also, so the engine is moving less air and making less power than a stock one where I race it. I contacted a tuner when I first bought the car, they told me the engine would blow up if I drove it above 120mph, so I have very little confidence in tuners.


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Originally Posted by buckwam View Post
How reliable is a tune from a reputable tuner? Has anyone had mechanical or electrical issues running a tune on an otherwise stock setup?
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Old 07-19-2021, 07:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 427 View Post
This is what keeps me away from tuners! I'm sure if I can increase the flow of air the mass air meter will give me the fuel. I'm running 3000+ elevation also, so the engine is moving less air and making less power than a stock one where I race it. I contacted a tuner when I first bought the car, they told me the engine would blow up if I drove it above 120mph, so I have very little confidence in tuners.


Kurt
Don't let one bad apple define an entire community. After all, you don't do that with a dentist or a contractor either when you happen upon a bad one. There are quite a few reputable tuners mentioned repeatedly in these forums, and I'd think most of them offer remote tuning as well as reliable advice, so you may not even need to drive too far.

I can't decode this statement of yours, though: "I'm sure if I can increase the flow of air the mass air meter will give me the fuel"—the mass airflow sensor does not give or command fuel, it is an input source to the ECM that then decides on fuel flow based on the tune. Even then, if there's more air pulled in, the entire fuel system must be capable of supplying the required amount of fuel. Also if you add a flex fuel system, more fuel volume will need to be moved, given ethanol's lower energy density.

All in all I would definitely find a tuner and work with them before making any of these changes.
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Old 07-19-2021, 09:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 427 View Post
This is what keeps me away from tuners! I'm sure if I can increase the flow of air the mass air meter will give me the fuel. I'm running 3000+ elevation also, so the engine is moving less air and making less power than a stock one where I race it. I contacted a tuner when I first bought the car, they told me the engine would blow up if I drove it above 120mph, so I have very little confidence in tuners.


Kurt
I had a dual 93 octane/ E46 tune in my 2008 Saturn Sky Redline. It was a Trifecta tune. Completely reliable and never had any problems. E46 tune probably added at least 50 hp to the wheels.
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Old 07-19-2021, 12:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 427 View Post
I'm sure if I can increase the flow of air the mass air meter will give me the fuel.
That is a COMPLETELY wrong statement in regards to the newer motors and computer controls (ie, ECM).

The computer can and DOES limit power output based on what it is programmed to produce. All of the newer computer setups are torque-limited. ie, if the computer expects 250ft/lbs at 3500rpm, it will scale up or down to meet that 250ft/lbs.

That is not to say it can MAKE extra HP just because you program it, but if the combination of parts will make the power commanded, it will do it. If the parts are making too much power, than it will REDUCE the power output down to the level commanded.

That is why a tune from a reliable tuner is REQUIRED to produce anything more than programmed stock. Most tuners will tell you that GM "left a little power on the table" with these setups, so getting your extra 15-20hp/tq should be well within the range of doability on a stock setup.

As I said, put a K&N filter in, a good tune (I recommend Trifecta, as they tune EVERYTHING, not just WOT) and you should easily get what you want.

If the tuner you talked to acted so flippant and irrational, it goes to show how little confidence they have in their tune. It does not represent what is available out there.
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Old 07-19-2021, 02:29 PM   #9
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A downpipe and tune should get you more than what you're looking for. It's what I did and I'm happy with the butt dyno. If you can/are willing to deal with ethanol, I would recommend that as well. As others have stated, a tune is required to see any gains in hp or torque.

I will also say that doing high-speed/highway pulls is known to kill the LTG motor. Really any direct injection turbo motor will suffer from the same fate.
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Old 07-19-2021, 05:32 PM   #10
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I added a K&N filter, ZZPerformance intake tube, and ZZPerformance throttle body, and then did the remote tune from ZZPerformance. Its like driving a completely different vehicle. I'm not sure on HP gain, but I wouldn't doubt it gained 20+ hp. All in all, cost about $1000 installing myself.
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Old 07-19-2021, 07:43 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahbb33 View Post
I added a K&N filter, ZZPerformance intake tube, and ZZPerformance throttle body, and then did the remote tune from ZZPerformance. Its like driving a completely different vehicle. I'm not sure on HP gain, but I wouldn't doubt it gained 20+ hp. All in all, cost about $1000 installing myself.

ZZP is the one that told me over 120mph will break the engine, although I'm sure the gains are substantial. I suspect they know the tune well, so I can't use that as I'll be running well over 120mph if all goes well!
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Old 07-19-2021, 07:54 PM   #12
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I'll likely remove the cat and add the higher flow intercooler as well as the tube between the air box and the turbo. Ethanol won't add any power without adding boost, and my injectors aren't big enough stock. When I race it I run VP performance unleaded because it's available at the race and I know it will give me a better safety margin.

What I'm doing is holding my engine basically wide open for a touch over 20 minutes, this is well within the limits of this engine. Before the engine can be installed in a car they must run 100 hours at WOT at 110% of rated HP going between peak HP and peak TQ. I'm running below peak in my car because of the elevation, I'm hoping I can get near stock power levels as that will give me the speeds I need!


Kurt
Quote:
Originally Posted by foshjowler View Post
A downpipe and tune should get you more than what you're looking for. It's what I did and I'm happy with the butt dyno. If you can/are willing to deal with ethanol, I would recommend that as well. As others have stated, a tune is required to see any gains in hp or torque.

I will also say that doing high-speed/highway pulls is known to kill the LTG motor. Really any direct injection turbo motor will suffer from the same fate.
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Old 07-19-2021, 08:09 PM   #13
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Again, without a tune you won't see ANY power gains.

A high flow intercooler is fine if you want to add it, but again, it won't gain you anything without a tune.

I also agree that for longevity you don't do E85. If the factory were to have added E85 as an option, I would say it was safe, but for an aftermarket "add-on" I would not. Regardless if it uses factory parts, it wasn't offered from the factory stock.

In regards to your goals, a tune is the only way to net what you want. It is just the way it is.

You observations of them running at 110% of rated HP for 100 hours is correct, but that is on an engine dyno in "stock form". They do not do heavy-run endurance testing like that on a track or street. Certain vehicles do, but not anything with a LTG platform in it.

The real reason for the bad rap on these engines is the fact that they ran a turbo on a motor with non-forged pistons or rods. That is TOTALLY ignorant.

Also, to clarify, direct-injection is NOT the reason you can't run these WOT extended. It is the lack of forged internals.

Actually, run one of these at WOT for extended time and you will have ZERO carbon buildup. Probably one of the best things you can do to keep things clear, as low part throttle and off-throttle is exactly how the carbon builds up in the first place.

If you really want to be serious about racing like this, bite the bullet, pull the engine, put in forged rods and pistons, get a larger intercooler, put a tune on it and be done. It would be bullet-proof, you could have them add in a good 30hp/tq beyond stock and totally be in the range you want without worrying.

Also, you stated the injectors are not large enough. That is a totally wrong statement. There is a margin built into all production vehicles. You can easily add 100hp and torque without needing larger injectors on a forged bottom end. You will need a larger turbo for those levels, but that is it. Also the tune becomes critical if you choose to run the stock catalytic converter at WOT on a setup with that much power for that much time, but that would be the only concern with that setup.
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Old 07-19-2021, 08:31 PM   #14
427
 
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It will gain power if I increase flow
The injectors aren't big enough for E85, that's what I said
I won't be changing the tune, just some parts
I have done the 110% testing, it is much harder on parts than what I do.
I have a car I'll be racing, but I have it in a million pieces right now! I bought the Camaro so I could keep doing my license runs, eventually I'll be running unlimited in my Malibu.


Kurt

Quote:
Originally Posted by 95TA - The Beast View Post
Again, without a tune you won't see ANY power gains.

A high flow intercooler is fine if you want to add it, but again, it won't gain you anything without a tune.

I also agree that for longevity you don't do E85. If the factory were to have added E85 as an option, I would say it was safe, but for an aftermarket "add-on" I would not. Regardless if it uses factory parts, it wasn't offered from the factory stock.

In regards to your goals, a tune is the only way to net what you want. It is just the way it is.

You observations of them running at 110% of rated HP for 100 hours is correct, but that is on an engine dyno in "stock form". They do not do heavy-run endurance testing like that on a track or street. Certain vehicles do, but not anything with a LTG platform in it.

The real reason for the bad rap on these engines is the fact that they ran a turbo on a motor with non-forged pistons or rods. That is TOTALLY ignorant.

Also, to clarify, direct-injection is NOT the reason you can't run these WOT extended. It is the lack of forged internals.

Actually, run one of these at WOT for extended time and you will have ZERO carbon buildup. Probably one of the best things you can do to keep things clear, as low part throttle and off-throttle is exactly how the carbon builds up in the first place.

If you really want to be serious about racing like this, bite the bullet, pull the engine, put in forged rods and pistons, get a larger intercooler, put a tune on it and be done. It would be bullet-proof, you could have them add in a good 30hp/tq beyond stock and totally be in the range you want without worrying.

Also, you stated the injectors are not large enough. That is a totally wrong statement. There is a margin built into all production vehicles. You can easily add 100hp and torque without needing larger injectors on a forged bottom end. You will need a larger turbo for those levels, but that is it. Also the tune becomes critical if you choose to run the stock catalytic converter at WOT on a setup with that much power for that much time, but that would be the only concern with that setup.
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