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Why modify a car.....

djh4000

Established Member
It's hardly an obsession releasing the power that's available readily with some simple updates to engine management. Why not have the extra horses is my motto not to mention the better throttle response and smoother torque curves.
 

gangzoom

Distinguished Member
What's the obsession with modifying the car?

If you want it to go faster then buy a faster car.

:D I wish I wasn't obsessed with modifying cars, my bank account would be alot healthier....but once you get to a certain level in performance it's becomes very hard to justify buying/running cars which are quicker. I've now got my 335i to a stage where the only things which are faster will cost significantly more to buy and run...XFR, M5, RS6, so essentially 500bhp+ machines.

Believe it or not my modified 335i (Declared power output of 400bhp) only cost £200 more to ensure than my wifes standard civic. Total spent on the 335i, including buying it, buying and fitting all mods is under £25K...A new 320D starts at £28K. Servicing costs are same as normal, and the car still gets 35-40mpg on a motorway run, so purely interms of bhp/£ its works out cheaper to modify the 335i than to buy and run a M5.....

That is not to say I don't want a M5/XFR/RS6, the plan would be to get one in the next 4-5 years....but will I be happy with a bog standard M5?? I doubt it, tuners have already hit over 650Bhp on the F10 M5, thats only 100bhp off the new £230K Ferrari F12:eek:...Ofcourse I'm sure everyone would love a Ferrari F12, but even sitting in one is probably out of most peoples reach, where as in a few years you be able to pick up a used F10 M5 for new 320D money, and have the potential to tune it to nearly the same power as a £230K Ferrari....tell me thats not a tempting thought :cool:.

I guess you can call me a petrolhead :).
 
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Dave

Distinguished Member
It's hardly an obsession releasing the power that's available readily with some simple updates to engine management. Why not have the extra horses is my motto not to mention the better throttle response and smoother torque curves.

Surely a manufacturer that has spent millions on designing and producing a car has tweaked it to get the *right* amount of horses and reliability?

Besides what's the point unless you do a track day every weekend? There aren't many roads in the UK where you could dream of driving a car properly and legally, not to mention ending up lodging it in a wall.

I'm speaking from experience here because I spent a fortune modifying a car in my late teens and looking back I was a blithering idiot. I just spent the money on a proper car (Corrado VR6) and stopped spending money on silly additions that did virtually bugger all to the performance. Then I got completely sensible and realised that a really fast car is about as useful as a chocolate fireguard.

If we travelled between London and Edinburgh I can virtually guarantee I'd do it as quick in a 1 litre Corsa as you would in your BMW.
 

Dave

Distinguished Member
Sorry for the OT by the way, if a mod could split these posts out in to a new thread it would probably be for the best.
 

gangzoom

Distinguished Member
If we travelled between London and Edinburgh I can virtually guarantee I'd do it as quick in a 1 litre Corsa as you would in your BMW.

Absolutely, you probably get there faster, I rarely go over 60mph on M ways...but thats not the point of, my old Peugeot 106 could do over 70mph, so judging by that no one needs anything more than 60bhp:smashin:

I don't understand why people spend more than £20 on a pair of jeans, or why people like paying £££ to fly out to a island and sit on a beach reading a book.

But that's the fun of life, every one enjoy doing their own things :thumbsup:.
 

Dave

Distinguished Member
Absolutely, you probably get there faster, I rarely go over 60mph on M ways...but thats not the point of, my old Peugeot 106 could do over 70mph, so judging by that no one needs anything more than 60bhp:smashin:

I don't understand why people spend more than £20 on a pair of jeans, or why people like paying £££ to fly out to a island and sit on a beach reading a book.

But that's the fun of life, every one enjoy doing their own things :thumbsup:.

Fair enough.

I have now however got a really funny Ali G style image in my head of you doing 0 to 30 in half a second from some traffic lights. :rotfl:
 

djh4000

Established Member
I'd be amazed if your corsa could get there in the same time as my Beemer if we aren't exactly behaving legal ..... Ahem ! But agree if 70 is your thing then we'd get there around the same time. I have to agree with gang zoom though, sometimes the point is that your car is different and it puts a smile on your face and that's all we can ask for really. And believe me, my car can definitely put a smile on my face and I'm sure it surprises a few others too
 

alexs2

Distinguished Member
:D I wish I wasn't obsessed with modifying cars, my bank account would be alot healthier....but once you get to a certain level in performance it's becomes very hard to justify buying/running cars which are quicker. I've now got my 335i to a stage where the only things which are faster will cost significantly more to buy and run...XFR, M5, RS6, so essentially 500bhp+ machines. .......

I guess you can call me a petrolhead :).

Same here....not too many 500bhp shopping trolleys around,but it is fun,and practical as an everyday drive in a way that a Ferrari or similar might not be.
 

un1eash

Distinguished Member
Your asking on an av forum where people spend thousands to watch TV and listen to music why bother modifying a car. Its a simple case of why not. My cars don't just get me from a to b, there a hobby and i spend time enjoying them and meeting new people.
 

Dave

Distinguished Member
I'd be amazed if your corsa could get there in the same time as my Beemer if we aren't exactly behaving legal ..... Ahem ! But agree if 70 is your thing then we'd get there around the same time. I have to agree with gang zoom though, sometimes the point is that your car is different and it puts a smile on your face and that's all we can ask for really. And believe me, my car can definitely put a smile on my face and I'm sure it surprises a few others too

Perhaps it's simply about perception and need.

When I had my Corrado I was living with my parents and could easily afford the £1800 a year insurance and associated costs of running it, not to mention that it was a fantastic car. Then i got a house and kids and unfortunately now my car is simply a means of getting me and the family from A to B, safely and as efficiently as possible.

I do appreciate a nice motor (which is why I have a 3 series Beemer) but just can't appreciate why people spend money on modifying a perfectly good car.

It seems a standard thing whenever someone on here asks about this car or that and someone always says "buy this, get it remapped". I just don't see the logic I'm afraid. Same thing when people put tractor wheels and ridiculously skinny tyres on a car, or a personal hatred of mine, window tints. :mad:

As I said, manufacturers spend millions on developing a vehicle and I refuse to believe that they would deliberately make a vehicle under perform.

I know I probably sound like Victor Meldrew but there we are. I did all sorts to a Rover 214, alloys, spoilers, bodywork, lowered it, steering wheel, gear knob, filter, exhaust and you know what? It was still a ****** Rover 214 which looked like a 4 year old had gone to town on it. It sounded like a lawn mower and performed like one but I still thought it was the mutts. I spent thousands and simply look back and shake my head, what an idiot.:facepalm:
 

Dave

Distinguished Member
Your asking on an av forum where people spend thousands to watch TV and listen to music why bother modifying a car. Its a simple case of why not. My cars don't just get me from a to b, there a hobby and i spend time enjoying them and meeting new people.

Yes but people don't buy a sub then drill extra ports in to it or buy a TV then remap the internal electronics do they?

This is my point, I understand nice cars and enjoying them. I don't understand buying a car and feeling you have to fiddle with it to make it better. Just buy a better car. :)
 

Dave

Distinguished Member
They do. It's called getting it ISF calibrated

Touche. :D

Seriously though, I think ISF calibration is more like adjusting the seat. There's nothing inherently wrong with it, it just needs adjusting to get the best out of it.
 

NewBeetle

Distinguished Member
Any different to buying £300 interconnects to eek out a little more performance? Or an external DAC to improve on the one supplied inside the the CD player?
 

Dave

Distinguished Member
Any different to buying £300 interconnects to eek out a little more performance? Or an external DAC to improve on the one supplied inside the the CD player?

Yeah because I'd never do either of those things either.

I'm not criticising anyone that does, I just don't understand it especially in relation to cars. There's always a faster car so why not just buy one?
 

NewBeetle

Distinguished Member
Yeah because I'd never do either of those things either.

I'm not criticising anyone that does, I just don't understand it especially in relation to cars. There's always a faster car so why not just buy one?

I can understand people wanting to have a 'sleeper', I've never modded a car myself but it's always gone on. The idea of an everyday car that was faster than it was designed to be has always had attraction for many. I remember my uncle fitting twin webber carbs to his MK1 escort.
 

KelvinS1965

Distinguished Member
Any different to buying £300 interconnects to eek out a little more performance? Or an external DAC to improve on the one supplied inside the the CD player?

Or adding an external video processor for your display or an EQ device for your subwoofer (for example an Antimode)? Neither strictly necessary but I can confirm that they take the level of the display and subwoofer up a number of levels. In the former case better upscaling/calibration adjustments than even the most expensive TV.

FWIW I've modified my personal cars: My RS2000 will have a free flowing stainless exhaust when i put it back on the road; to make it sound better and perhaps a fraction more power. Improved brakes since the standard ones aren't that great despite the light weight. My Z3 now has a strut brace to help strengthen the bodyshell which reduces scuttleshake and polybushes to sharpen the handling. I've not modified the engine as such since it's the 3.0 straight six so goes well enough for my abilities. :)
 

Daddy k

Distinguished Member
I had a 225bhp Audi TT.

I got it remapped and a few other tweaks.

On the way home it was amazing!

I was sat in 6th gear, 70mph. Put my foot down to try it out without dropping gear, and it pulled better than if I had dropped it down 2 gears in standard form.

Transformed the car and made audi's choice of tune seem boring and a let down.
 

djh4000

Established Member
Dave said:
Touche. :D

Seriously though, I think ISF calibration is more like adjusting the seat. There's nothing inherently wrong with it, it just needs adjusting to get the best out of it.

Remapping a car is simply doing the same as your point here, just an adjustment to get the best out of it. I too used to go the full hog when I was younger except the fluffy dice ! But I'd no longer do that or feel the need. My car looks standard, it just goes quick when I feel the need. Plus the cost isn't that great when you consider the gains compared to when I used to change everything in the past for minimal gains.

A good map can transform a car and just because the manufacturer sets it to a standard value, the variations in market and climate and fuel conditions mean that you can tweak settings to your likings as one size doesn't fit all. As for transporting your family safely, I totally get that and that's why I have a modded 5 series as its fast, comfortable'ish and practical.
 

alexs2

Distinguished Member
Yes but people don't buy a sub then drill extra ports in to it or buy a TV then remap the internal electronics do they?

This is my point, I understand nice cars and enjoying them. I don't understand buying a car and feeling you have to fiddle with it to make it better. Just buy a better car. :)

Maybe not,but as others have said,we spend loads on cables and so on,and then there's the modding brigade for amps and tuners(for those that still have them!),and those guys will spend huge amounts upgrading PSUs and so on.

Having said that,and admitted to both modifying cars and building and modifying valve amps,I hate cars that rub along the ground or have stretched tyres and all that goes with it.

It is,as you said,more a matter of taste and what you want.
 

un1eash

Distinguished Member
Lots of manufacturers use the same engine and have different states of power, BMW have been doing it for years. The 2.0i in a Z4 is 147bhp, the same engine in a 320i is 170bhp, in the 118i its 130bhp for example.
 
I'm considering a remap and new exhaust system although both will be official BMW performance parts...

BMW M Performance Parts : Product highlights BMW 1 Series (3-door)

Quite a lot of money for an extra 20bhp / 40Nm of torque but will keep the BMW warranty. The car will still be showing 119g C02 so still £30 a year tax. Not bad for a 200bhp/420Nm engine :devil:

I've also spent nearly £2000 on a sound system for the car but only as I stupidly forgot to add the BMW Harmon Kardon system :facepalm: don't worry no silly barry boy subwoofers just a rather nice front end system to blast a bit of Emeli Sande out :D:D
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
Besides what's the point unless you do a track day every weekend? There aren't many roads in the UK where you could dream of driving a car properly and legally, not to mention ending up lodging it in a wall.

If we travelled between London and Edinburgh I can virtually guarantee I'd do it as quick in a 1 litre Corsa as you would in your BMW.

I agree with your first point.
I only have 163bhp at the moment, there's rarely a clear enough road to use that for any length of time, never mind more.
I also agree, to a degree, with the A to B argument.
Although having done Aberdeen to Ipswich in a 1.1 Peugeot 206, and not taking much/any longer than I would in a more powerful car, it was quite a strained journey as the car was struggling to maintain my required cruising speeds.

The same argument goes on in the bike world, some people just like saying they have xxx bhp at their disposal.
I prefer smaller bikes that you can ride hard, not big bikes where you go around on part throttle all the time.

I'm afraid that when it comes to big bhp figures, I always have a little snigger.
I'm way past that, I've seen/heard it all before.
I used to instruct at bike trackdays and still take part.
Nothing better than targeting a 'big bhp boaster' and going past them.
Car or bike, power makes you lazy.
Why practice braking or cornering if you can lazily blast down a straight.
I like to say these people have "more skill on straights"

Edit, and out of any performance increasing part, exhausts bug me the most, 100%
 
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