Improve The Performance Of Your Car With Cost-Effective Upgrades

Published: January 17, 2023
Last updated: February 21, 2024

If your car hasn’t been performing the way it was, it properly needs some attention. A few simple repairs and modifications can have a real impact on your vehicle’s over performance. It doesn’t need to weigh too heavily on your finances. Start with decluttering and cleaning your car. You may also want to consider replacing your older rubber bushings with new polyurethane bushings, changing your filters, among other simpler upgrades.

Consulting with automobile experts, we have here the best and most effective improvements for your car that won’t break the bank.

“There are countless modifications you can make to your car to improve performance, the issue is they can get expensive. Here are a few simple performance modifications that won’t break the bank.”

Tune or Remap

“If you have a turbo car you can benefit from a tune or remap, a tuner will edit the car’s ECU map and you can see large gains without having to install any new parts as the edit how the car delivers power, you can expect to pay anywhere from $200+ for a tune.” (Rob Swinburne)

New Exhaust System

“A new exhaust system is a great and cost-effective way to make more power. With more and more restrictions in place because of emissions and often manufacturers cut corners to reduce costs. Adding a less restrictive exhaust will mean you will make roughly 2%-5% more power and hopefully sound better.” (Rob Swinburne)

Cold Air Intake

“A cold air intake is the last pick for a cost-effective power upgrade. Depending on the size of your engine your power increase can vary. Having a proper cold air intake means your engine gets less dense, more oxygenated air and can make more power.”

Rob Swinburne is a Digital Marketing Apprentice for Surge Marketing Solutions

Intake Products Like Cold Air Intake And Drop-in Filter

“Intake modifications are part of preventive maintenance for the car’s engine. To replace the worn-out factory air-box that sits inside the engine bay, an aftermarket air filter without the induction piping is usually installed. 

“For vehicles used in trail riding, mudding, rock crawling, or even hauling, putting an aftermarket drop-in air filter is recommended. Since dirt and dust often get ingested by the engine, the power is affected and these elements can potentially damage the internals of the motor. The drop-in filters are good at capturing the particles before they get into the engine.” (Jen Demkin)

For Exhaust, Customers Usually Get The Mid-pipe Or Full System

“Exhaust products are popular among car owners. This type of mod improves the performance of the car’s exhaust system and lets the entire engine function better.  Installing an aftermarket exhaust system can unleash the full power of the car’s engine. The full exhaust system provides a more efficient way for the exhaust gases in the engine to escape and helps it breathe a bit easier.” (Jen Demkin)

ECU Tuners and Programmers

“The car’s computer is re-mapped using tuners and programmers. The flash tuner is loaded to the Digital Motor Electronic (DME) through the OBDII port, while the piggyback is plugged directly into the ECU.  The piggyback tuner will change specific sensors and signals of the car. The flash tuner has software that lets you customize and tweak for precision.”

Jen Demkin, Writer for 4WheelOnline

Increase The Flow Capacity Of The Exhaust System

“If you allow more air through the engine, you can increase its performance. The exhaust is more limiting than the intake. This means that it doesn't matter how much air the intake allows if the exhaust system can't reject as much. Consider increasing the exhaust system line size; it can lead to a gain from 1 to 3% horsepower increase.

“Aftermarket exhaust components are generally cheap and changing the exhaust system is not as hard as it seems.” (Ludovic Chung-Sao)

Remap The Software Running Your Engine

“You can consult specific garages that can reprogram the computer running (called the ECU) your engine. It means on the paper that your engine is more capable than what you're getting. In exchange for a few hundred dollars, you can get very impressive gains. But the caveats are that doing so voids your warranty and can lead to extra fees on your car insurance.”

Ludovic Chung-Sao is the Founder of Zen Soundproof

Exhaust Headers, Installing High-Performance Exhaust System

“A few basic and cost-effective upgrades you can do to boost your vehicle’s performance are; installing a cold air intake, exhaust headers (and wrapping them), tuning your computer, and installing a high-performance exhaust system/catalytic converters. Cold air intakes are about the most common and inexpensive performance upgrades you’ll come across. Headers will allow the engine to release exhaust gases more efficiently and by wrapping them, you increase this effect, as well as keep the running temperature under the hood lower.

“Reprogramming a vehicle’s computer can be done for fairly cheap, and there are premade ones that can be purchased so you can handle this by yourself. While a straight pipe exhaust system may be more effective, it is not legal in all states, so a high-performance system with high-performance catalytic converters will allow you to get close and still be cost-effective.”

Mark Beneke is the Co-Owner of two buy-here-pay-here used car dealerships, Westland Auto Sales

Principal Analyst A mechanical engineer by trade, Bobby previously spent over 20 years at automakers giants, where he spent most of his time leading core technology design and operations and the development of new automotive models. He now devotes most of his time to be our go-to guy and Principal Analyst in Keep Driving.
Copyright © 2024 Keep Driving. All Rights Reserved.
DMCA.com Protection Status