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National Driver

1667 Posts


Posted - 03 Jul 2007 :  11:32:43 PM  Show Profile  Click to see nodg's MSN Messenger address Send nodg a Private Message
Even if you have a small budget, you can still easily make your car perform much better than standard. There has been quite a few threads on 'how do i make my car faster' so ill take the pain out of the guess work and reveal what modifications the trusty v6 and v8 respond well to.

First things first, you need your car to be fully serviced to obtain maximum satisfaction,

Many differant types of mods make your car perform better so ill split it up into 3 sections, basic mods, mechanical mods, and suspensions mods

2.5 inch sports exhaust with 1 muffler and no resonator(v6) $250, 3.0inch single exhaust with 1 muffler and no resonator(v8) $360, The v6 and v8 vn-p's share basically the same exhaust system. where the v6 breathes at a mid rate, the v8 suffers drastically with too much resistance.

POD or CAI $100-$150, good quality pods can be purchased for around 100 dollars, people brag about cai's but in my experience they only come into play at night when its really cold, they also cost much more.
To accompany the pod, a heat shield should replace the fan shroud, this will absorb engine heat and allow cooler air to be sucked through the pod, for cold air expands quicker thus making more kilowatts! They are easy enough to make and install yourself, if not a engineerer will make one for you.

Custom 'off the shelf' memcal $450-$650, if your not modifying the engines internals or adding forced induction an off the shelf chip is the best bang for your buck, over the years performance shops(powerchip,chiptorque) have made and tested their own programming for the v6-8's that have basic bolt on's. I have tried 2, powerchip and chiptorque, the powerchip wins by a long shot and set me back $450. They achieve this by air/fuel tuning, advancing the timing and disabling some fetaures on the standard programme.

Higher flowing injecters will allow more fuel into your motor even with standard ecu's. Basically any injecter will fit but the highest flowing injecter in the v6 range is the mitsubishi 3.5 v6. Not sure whats best for the 5litre but i found that xr8 injecters work a treat.

Stage 2 shift kit $150 and bigger servo $40 for your th700, a shift kit accompanied by a high performance servo eliminates shift lag, it also shoves your car forward when it changes, this is achieved by modifying the valve body to increase fluid preasure. Only reccomended on an auto that is in excellent condition because if theres a weak point, the box will deteriorate. Should be installed by someone who is familiar with cars and can work things out for themselfs. otherwise an auto transmission specialist will install it for you, this includes a basic service $200. upon installing your transmission kit, you can play with your kickdown cable to rev your car out to 5800rpm in each gear, which i find is the maximum torque range rpm. A shift kit will shave anythign up to a second off your 0-100 times.

Sports wheel $50-$300 Boss kit $50-$150, might not sound like a mod but the smaller wheel is firmer and gives you more control of your car in corners, straight line performance isnt everything.

225/60/15 $100-$300(new) each on pursuit rims $10-$30each, wider wheels gives you so much more traction and cornering ability compared to the 205's its not funny, pursuits are the rims of choice for there durability.

Another note, after internals have been changed go straight to either a 3inch single exhaust system, or twin 2 1/4 inch pipes with dual cataylic converters


Depends how far you want to go, both the v6 and v8 are strong but when you start cracking 300kilowatts you would want to strenghtening the block, but thats another ball game. Its reccomended that the above mods be installed before continuing with the mentioned below. If you are continuing to change engine internals a custom tune on a dyno is compulsory $200-$1500. A aftermarket computer system or piggy back further allows you to play with the engine memcal programme.

Camshaft $1200-$1600 fitted. The camshaft controls when and how much the valves open/close, fitting a lumpier camshaft basically allows the valves to open more and for longer.

Higher flowing heads/roller rockers $1600-$3000 fitted, installing this mod with the cam shaft will minimise valvetrain friction and improve efficiancy, larger and better designed ports allow more fuel and air in and out of the motor. Shaving a few thou off the heads and using a smaller head gasket will increase the compression ratio, increasing the ratio with the same amount of fuel crammed into the combustion chamber will force the pistons up and down harder and faster, this will make your engine rev up quicker and spin the crankshaft quicker and more effortlessly

Twin throttle bodies $600-$2500 for parts, adding a second throttle body allows twice the amount of air to enter the intake manifold than standard. all previous mods listed are allowing the motor to breathe in and out easier and at a higher rate, in other words more air is needed to reduce induction restrictions.

VL turbo diff $1200-$1500, these differentials are scarse and expensive but offer a taller ratio which is better for take off, is 28 spline which is standard in the v6's so it will take a bit of a thrashing. With this mod, the acceleration rate increases but top speed is reduced slightly. Another advantage of the vl turbo diff is that its shorter than a vn-p one allowing wider wheels to be put on without tubbing.

Forced induction $2500-$8000, comes down to personal preferance you just need to decide. Turbos run off the exhaust system and suffer from low down turbo lag which increases as you increase the boost. On the other hand a centrifigal supercharger runs off the crankshaft via a belt and is operational from idle. Id much prefer a supercharger with a blow off valve than a laggin turbo any day. A cheap and very easy option that doesnt require a memcal tune is the popular toyota super charger kits that bolt staright on $900 new.


Believe it or not but decking your car with suspension modifications increases your et times just as much as cornering abilities.

Lowering your car $0-$1000 fitted, easiest way to minimise body roll. .Theres the cheap way and a proper, more expensive way to do this and ive done both and can say the more expensive way gives alot more performance wise as well as improved comfort.
The cheap way is to 'accurately' oxy torch a few coils off your existing *****y springs, i dont reccomend it.
The proper way is to buy the thicker and more durable springs that have adiquate coils, eg king springs. rear springs can be installed by the home mechanic but the fronts require a special tool which compresses the spring in the mcpherson strut assembly. Lowered/shorter and beefier shocks are a must, not only do they perform much better but they dont flog out in a year like the standard ones installed with lowered springs!

Strut brace $150, Not only looks good but eliminates body roll and holds the front towers straight, makes for quicker takeoffs and better cornering, actually when you learn to 'use' the strut brace you can corner twice as fast and tight as a standard vn.

Adjustable panhard rod is reccomended when you lower your car, even with skinny wheels youll need to slightly realign your diff because every single lowered car is affected even though its not highly noticable.

v8 swaybars(v6)$cheap and z bars $40, get front and rear v8 sway bars for your v6 to further improve stiffness and cornering ability, the thicker sway bars and z bars take alot more to flex and holds your car firmer than the v6 ones.


When going 18's or bigger youll find that tyre scrubbing is a big issue, front and rear camber kits align your hubs to reduce scrubbing out and allows the fitment and operation of 19-20's. kits can be bought and installed at home for around the $300 mark, could even be cheaper these days.

Will add more o the list but i think these mods are as far as youd want to go without a complete overhaul. is not liable for any damages occured during modifications or work on vehicle!
do at own risk!


Edited by - trizo on 04 Jul 2007 02:11:39 AM
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National Driver

1667 Posts


Posted - 04 Jul 2007 :  10:32:02 PM  Show Profile  Click to see nodg's MSN Messenger address Send nodg a Private Message
MISTYPES IN LAST POST- On the first line of the suspension mods i was meant to write decrease et times instead of increase

Also forgot to add to the basic modifications extracter modifications, assisting in directing the flow of burnt gases to your tailpipe by making less bends in the collecters and has much more 'swoop', redesigning the headers to optimumly swirl the gases out your tailpipe reducing backpreasure and resistance. Extracters are noticed when your higher in the rev range, the revs climb alot quicker than the standard headers. Extracters from vn-vr will fit you vn-p commodores and range in price from $300 second hand to $800 new. fitment is harder tnam it looks you need to lower your steering rack and takes up to 3 hours to put in, a exhaust specialist would fit a set of extracters for 800 new

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