Browsing: Test & Tune

Rare and different. Two words that epitomize the Nissan Silvia S15. It carries a mystique almost as captivating as Nissan’s Skyline GT-R. Nissan ceased production of the Silvia S14, known in the U.S. as a 240SX, at the end of 1998. America never received the Silvia S15. Like its Skyline big brother, the S15 only saw production from 1999 until 2002. When production of the Skyline GT-R and the Silvia stopped in 2002, the end of an era had arrived. However, America would become familiar with the S15 through its wide use in drifting and time attack. Favored for its…

The Mitsubishi EVO X is still one of the most popular choices for tuners and for good reason. The 4B11T long block has proven to be stout, capable of handling in excess of 500-plus horsepower regularly. Additionally, the GSR model’s five-speed manual transmission is able to hold equivalent power levels when reinforced properly. Combined with the Active Center Differential and Active Yaw Controls, the EVO X GSR also makes for an excellent track car. This all adds up to a space reserved in the DSPORT D’GARAGE for an EVO X of our own. Now that DSPORT Sales Director Wen Lai…

For most of us in the tuning market, warranty claims become a huge hassle when the dealer denies service based on modifications. Although some dealers are “mod-friendly”, service managers come and go and usually the hook-ups don’t last long. In the aftermarket world, tuning companies looking to offer a factory warranty-friendly package must adhere to higher quality, drivability and reliability standards. Text by Jun Chen // Photos by Jun Chen, Richard Fong and Courtesy of Mountune Turbo Advantage From the factory, Ford’s latest Focus ST hatchback boasts a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder EcoBoost engine. While a four-cylinder, front-wheel-drive hatchback platform is…

In our last STI GVB Test & Tune, we increased the EJ257’s operating efficiency with a bolt-on intake system, a high-flow downpipe, and an exhaust system. These bolt-ons netted a peak horsepower gain of just over 31 horsepower but revealed the limitations of the factory intercooler system as the power curves showed signs of detonation. In this segment we’ll explore solutions that allow us to safely increase the EJ’s power output while eliminating harmful detonation. Text and Photos by Arnold Eugenio // Dyno Testing and Tuning by Bill Knose/HG Motorsports The Parts The STI’s top-mounted intercooler sits above the engine,…

The last time we checked in on our Subaru STI sedan Test & Tune project, we extracted an additional 34.5 WHP by simply changing engine oil, installing new spark plugs, fine-tuning the engine calibration and increasing peak boost pressure by only 1.5psi. This time around, we enlisted the services of several bolt-on parts that are common to the upgrade path for EJ257 owners. In this process, we discovered a few more limitations of the factory system. Understanding these limits allows enthusiasts to make the right choices to safely increase power. Text by Arnold Eugenio // Photos by Richard Fong //…

Subaru’s third-generation STI platform was released in the model year 2008 but was initially available only in the 5-door wagon configuration. This lack of choices had many Subaru enthusiasts holding off on purchases until the release of the GVB-coded sedan in 2011. With a few minor facelift and aero enhancements, the 2011-and-up STI models retained the same 2.5-liter EJ257 turbocharged boxer engine with its factory-rated 305 HP power output. The only notable difference between Gen 3A and Gen 3B STIs, outside of the availability of both the sedan and wagon platforms, was Subaru’s switch to a full-synthetic engine oil straight…

In our first Test & Tune with the K20Z3-based Honda Civic Si, we managed to bump up the power production with an overall 12.6 peak whp gained, with sections of the powerband showing increases as much as 19.1 whp. These power increases were realized with basic bolt-on products and an engine-refreshing upgrade to synthetic oil. For this round of parts, we decided to turn our attention to the area in and around the cylinder head to see if a few more aggressive bolt-ons could add power to our naturally-aspirated coupe. Text by Arnold Eugenio // Photos by Jeren Walker, Vinh…

The eighth generation Honda Civic represents a legacy that dates back to the early 70’s. What started as an economy car evolved into the leader of the import tuning revolution of the early 90’s. Even though Subaru’s STI, Mitsubishi’s Evolution and Nissan’s Z have become exceptionally popular in the sport compact segment, an army of Honda loyalists continue to support the Civic banner, and Honda continues to answer with the Si. Text by Richard Fong // Photos by Jeren Walker, Vinh Nguyen and Richard Fong // Wrenching by Jeren Walker K20Z3 Engine The FG2 Civic Si coupe and the FA5…

How refreshing it is to have our Project EVO in the magazine for two consecutive issues. Things rarely go as planned in the world of magazine project cars, but last month things finally started to come together for our Project EVO. To top it off, we finally managed to get over the 300-wheel-horsepower hurdle on XS Engineering’s 4WD dyno. Text and Photos by Michael Ferrara In the beginning of our Project EVO, we had outlined breaking our buildup into three distinct levels of tune. Level One would seek to maximize power with the factory turbocharger. Level Two would look for…

It’s been four issues since we last visited our Project EVO. During this time, the EVO has been involved in one of our most time consuming product evaluations of all time. This evaluation consisted of testing nearly every available exhaust system for the EVO. If you are interested in the results, be sure to pick up the June/July 2004 issue of our sister publication TPR. Text by Michael Ferrara // Photos by Michael Ferrara and Phil Lam PREVIOUSLY… When we last left our Project EVO, we had installed an HKS EVC electronic boost controller, the HKS FCON-V Pro engine management…

For the second month in a row, our STi earned a bye-run in competing against our EVO-VIII. The EVO-VIII has been involved with one of our most-extensive exhaust tests that will appear in our sister publication Tuner Performance Reports (TPR). Text by Michael Ferrara // Photos by Phil Lam As we set out from the start, our buildups will attempt to achieve peak reliable performance in three different configurations. Our first level will involve the parts and tuning that will help us achieve maximum performance from the stock engine and turbo combination. Our next level will attempt to achieve peak…

For our ongoing battle betweeen STi and EVO-VIII, we were planning on having another round of upgrades for both vehicles. However, things don’t always go as planned in the world of magazines. For this issue, our STi earned a bye-run when our EVO-VIII had to be racked for a clutch upgrade. Text by Michael Ferrara // Photos by Phil Lam As we set out from the start, our buildups will attempt to achieve peak reliable performance in three different configurations. Our first level will involve the parts and tuning that will help us achieve maximum performance from the stock engine…

What’s better… Subaru STi or EVO VIII? Both are great cars with tremendous potential for additional power and performance. Over the next year or two, we hope to provide some additional insight to this question by showing the performance potential of each vehicle. Text by Michael Ferrara // Photos by Michael Ferrara and Phil Lam Our buildups will attempt to achieve peak reliable performance in three different configurations. Our first level will involve the parts and tuning that will help us achieve maximum performance from the stock engine and turbo combination. Our next level will attempt to achieve peak performance…

One of the hottest cars for the tuner market is arguably the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII. Its high-output turbocharged four-cylinder engine and all-wheel-drive configuration make it an ideal platform for performance upgrades. In our September issue, we demonstrated some of the performance potential of this vehicle when we evaluated the Buschur Racing Stage 1 performance package. Since that article, we’ve been fortunate to get another EVO-VIII in our stable of performance vehicles. With this EVO, it will be our goal to show case the entire HKS performance parts lineup for the EVO-VIII as we gain first-hand product knowledge and direct…