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1G Non-Turbo N/T Horsepower Upgrades

Posted by 19Eclipse90, Mar 22, 2014

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  1. 19Eclipse90

    19Eclipse90 DSM Wiseman

    Joined Sep 29, 2003
    OKC, Oklahoma
    Note from 19Eclipse90: I will preface this article by saying that the most common questions we get concerning making power for a non-turbo DSM ask how to either install a turbo on a non-turbo engine or swap a turbo engine into the non-turbo car. In either case and for either 1.8L or 2.0L N/T equipped vehicles...

    ***READ THIS ARTICLE: Installing a turbo 4g63 into an nt 4g63***.

    Sorry for the interruption; now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

    Non-turbo DSMs that were built from 1990-94 came with either a 1.8L engine or the DOHC 2.0 liter 4G63 non-turbo power plant. The power potential of these cars leaves much to be desired. These motors have higher compression pistons than the turbocharged models, and actually react pretty well to aftermarket mods compared to other non-turbo cars of this generation - it's too bad there aren't more mods for them. To get more performance out of these cars, we've outlined a few possibilities below. Of course, some mods may not adhere to various vehicle emissions laws, so perform at your own risk. If you're looking to make really big power, it might be more cost effective to just buy a factory turbocharged DSM instead of heavily modifying a non-turbo 1G DSM.

    All-Motor Upgrades
    • Air Intake
      Replace the stock air box with a solid pipe and high-flow cone filter.​
    • Cat-back Exhaust
      Replace the stock cat-back exhaust with a higher flowing model.​
    • High-Flow Cat
      Replace the stock catalytic converter with a higher flowing model.​
    • Exhaust Header
      Replace the factory exhaust manifold with a tubular steel header.​
    Note that the above are all bolt-on modifications. It is possible to gain a little more power by doing internal work to the engine to obtain a bit more displacement or a bit more air flow.

    Forced Induction Options
    • Turbo Installation -- Read: The 4G63 NT Engine, and How to make a turbo kit for it!
      In the case of the 1.8L models, refer to Turbo 4G37 [1.8 SOHC] FAQ. For those with the 2.0L non-turbo 4G63, since the motor is basically the same layout as the turbocharged 4G63, it is possible to bolt up factory turbo parts from another car. However, with the higher compression, it won't be possible to turn up the boost enough to gain huge amounts of power. Obviously, the compression can be lowered, many will agree that it will likely be less hassle and more cost efficient to simply purchase a factory turbocharged 1G. Discuss this in our 1G N/T Forum.​
    • Nitrous
      The fastest and easiest way to bolt on big power. It's also the fastest and easiest way to destroy your engine if you don't know what you're doing. Read up on nitrous systems before considering one.​
    • Turbo Engine Swap -- Read: Installing a turbo 4g63 into an nt 4g63
      "This project is extremely time consuming, complex and expensive due to the amount of parts needed to perform the task. The parts alone can range upwards of $5000." -- said someone. **Another note from 19Eclipse90: this amount is quite excessive and would be more on par with buying most of the items brand new from the factory. Read the article above and do some research into pricing of things that will be needed to determine how much it will actually cost.** The basic parts needed are: Engine, transmission, ECU, intercooler (and piping), fuel pump, complete exhaust system, and possibly a few more things not mentioned. The two options above are definitely better choices for the less experienced. Consider the cost of simply buying a factory turbocharged DSM before attempting this swap.​

    **Disclaimer -- This is copied from the site's "Tech Guide: Upgrade Path" section; I am not the author of this information.**
    Last edited: May 3, 2015

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