Modifying a car with racing upgrades is a great way of improving its performance, but there is much science involved to make the upgrades work successfully. Here are a few pointers worth considering.
The heart of any motor car is the engine, and it is here that most power modifications take place. The internal combustion engine works on the Air in – Air compression – Fuel input and ignition – Exhaust out principle, which is shortened to Suck, Squish, Bang, Blow. It is at the Air Intake and Exhaust stages that most racing modifications start.
Standard engines are often strangled by their factory fitted air filters and exhaust pipes, so this is the most traditional method of gaining more power. A free flowing air filter coupled with an after-market exhaust system allows the engine to breathe, releasing extra horsepower. Further additions, such as high compression pistons, bespoke ignition gear and turbochargers are also common and require professional setup facilities to create the optimum performance envelope.
Wheels and tyres
Power in the engine does not necessarily translate to performance on the road or track. Investing in a set of tyres and wheels that enhance traction while reducing drag is a sensible option. A high-quality set of tyres can bring increased acceleration as well as better traction through corners. The improved road manners not only result in a higher overall speed but also boosts driver confidence.
Having dealt with gaining some extra power, it is important to consider additional braking ability and a brake upgrade is essential. Although it may be regarded as a primary safety feature, enhanced braking also improves the overall vehicle performance envelope by allowing later braking into corners and reducing the chances of brake fade.
As in the case of wheels and tyres, the suspension system is a vital element in getting power to the road. Sloppy or worn springs will cause reduced power transmission and can result in dangerous high-speed cornering manners. A standard racing modification is to fit stiffened suspension units that help alleviate cornering problems and assist in transferring power to the road.
There are many racing modifications available and it is worth researching the subject before making a decision. Torque Cars offer an unbiased opinion and plenty of advice.