From the first time you sat in your first car, you have wanted it to go faster…unless you are a ‘rich kid of instagram’, in which case, no need to read on and enjoy the rest of your day on your yacht. For the rest of us, we crave better performance and this usually entails trolling through autotrader on a nightly basis, just to dream. We decided this was no way to live, so looked into how we can improve the speed and performance of the cars we already have, in a way that doesn’t involve sticking on an over sized spoiler for no actual reason…So let’s jump straight in with the easiest and cheapest and work through to the bigger jobs and find out how to make your car faster for real.
1. Change your spark plugs
These small, unassuming car parts are vital to the performance of your car and like anything they reduce in quality and effectiveness over time. Having a quality spark from your plugs ensures efficient fuel economy whilst keeping your acceleration and power on point. In most cases they can be changed as part of a DIY car service, but do your research properly on how to change spark plugs to make sure you get it right. A misfiring car is not fun to drive (trust me, I’ve been there many times).
Check your existing plugs before jumping in to replacing them by following this spark plug guide.
2. Get new tires
Not the one many of us wanted to read. That bill from Kwik Fit still kicks me in the gut every time I glimpse at my tires, but they are so important to planting your power down. Granted, these could end up being the most expensive option on the list but they are also the most boring, so let’s get them in early.
Increasing overall speed is one thing but enjoying that speed more in the corners is largely down to your tires.
3. Treat yourself to an ECU Remap
This is a special upgrade, especially on newer vehicles, that can literally make your car feel like a complete upgrade. The Engine Control Unit does what it says on the tin and ensures that the engine runs at an optimal level for safety, warranties and even EU & US legislations, which is a good thing for the average car owner and the industry as a whole, but not all of us. The ECU uses software to essentially limit the engine’s power and efficiency performance but as all of know, software can be overwritten very easily – just ask the NHS.
Qualified remap professionals work to create new engine maps that will control the engine at a higher level, a level nearer to what it is really capable of, resulting in more power & torque or if you drive long distances regularly and go to the pub alone, improve fuel efficiency. ECU Remapping is affordable, reversible and extremely quick to achieve, in some cases it can be completed in under an hour.
4.Breath in with a Cold-air intake
Just like us, engines love air, it keeps them alive in just the same way. Installing a cold-air intake will provide greater quantities of condensed air into your hungry engine, resulting in cooler running = better performance. There will almost always be a horsepower increase so couple this with the previous upgrades and you will literally be driving a new car.
5. Fit an exhaust upgrade
Ok so this is like choosing bum implants over a breast enhancement, we get that, but there will be a performance gain on top of the improved sound. Upgrading your exhaust will reduce pressure in the engine and this will generate noticeable gains, generally speaking the more you spend the greater the improvements.
There are many other ways of increasing the overall driving experience of your car, but we believe the above 5 tips are enough when considering how to make your car faster, whilst being affordable, to put of the need for a new car for at least another year of two. The costs are a no brainer if there is some spare cash available.