Car tuning tips:C16SE Modifications"

C16SE Modifications Guide

How to modify and upgrade the Vauxhall C16SE

"Comprehensive guide to tuning the Vauxhall C16SE engine!"

Our friends at TorqueCars are always getting posts requesting information on how to improve the C16SE from people inquiring about getting more power from the C16SE and wanting to know what are the ultimate C16SE power upgrades. So let us look into Vauxhall C16SE parts and outline the best mods that work on this great engine and point out some frequent tuning mistakes along the way.

The Vauxhall C16SE are fantastic to work on and with the optimum tuning enhancements like ECU maps, turbo kits and camshafts you will definitely maximize your driving experience.

Let us review and look at C16SE tuning and show the greatest mods that work.

When talking about the best parts for your C16SE engine, we are going to concentrate on the parts that give the best power gain for you money.

C16SE induction kits

Improving air intake on the C16SE

You need air matched to fuel for an engine to work. If there is not enough fuel then it will run lean, if there is a lack of air it runs rich resulting in lost power and potentially damaging the engine. We'll pick up on fuelling later in this article but for now we shall look at air supply.

So the fundamental goal to any engine performance tuning task to push air into the C16SE engine but this has a knock on effect with the air flow sensor.

You'll commonly see there is a limitation in the air flow sensor MAF/MAP on the C16SE when loads more air is being pulled into the engine.

When tuning you may well find you need to get an air sensor or flow meter capable of upto 4 bars to cope with quite large power gains, whereas the OEM air sensor limited bhp and torque at a much lower level.

Headers flow the on the suck phase from the intake filter and allow it to be fed into the engine cylinders.

The shape and flow characteristics of the air Intake manifold can make a large improvement to fuel delivery on the C16SE.

On popular production engines headers are ripe for a performance upgrade, although a few car makers provide reasonably well designed headers.

Fitting big valve kits, carrying out 3 or 5 angle valve jobs and porting and head flowing will also increase bhp, this will allow you to get raising the bhp increase on other parts.

C16SE performance cam tips.

Some C16SE engines respond better to extreme cam durations so set your engine up on a rolling road.

The map and injectors and fuel pump also will make differences on the power gains you'll hit.

Altering valve durations can alter the power band and on most engines the exhaust and intake durations do not need to match, although most cams and tuners use matched pairs there are some advantages to extending the intake or exhaust durations.

Significant air intake, and exhaust improvements on the C16SE can be made from camshaft upgrades. Changing the camshaft profile alters the intake and exhaust durations on the engine and can dramatically change the bhp and power output.

NB: Fast road camshafts usually raise the torque throughout the rev range, you may sacrifice a little low end power but higher rpm power will improve.

Competition camshafts, raise the higher rpm power band but as a result the car will not idle smoothly and low end power nearly always suffers.

For a car used daily you must carefully try to match your engines power to your driving style.

I'd be surprised if you have found a C16SE Motorsport cam is a pleasure to live with when driving around busy urban areas.

Stage 1, 2 and 3 mods for the C16SE

Stage 1 C16SE parts:

Drilled & smoothed airbox, Fast road camshaft, Intake headers, Panel air filters, Remaps/piggy back ECU, Sports exhaust manifold.

Stage 2 C16SE parts:

fuel pump upgrades, induction kit, Fast road cam, Ported and polished head, Sports catalyst & performance exhaust, high flow fuel injectors.

Stage 3 C16SE parts:

Adding or Upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Twin charging conversions, Internal engine upgrades (head flowing porting/bigger valves), Engine balancing & blueprinting, Competition cam, Crank and Piston upgrades to alter compression.

Carefully think through your options and then source your parts and set yourself a power target to save yourself from expensive mistakes.

ECU mapping should help to unlock the full potential of all the upgrades you've done to your C16SE.

Tuning tips and articles Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums

You will typically expect to see gains of approximately 20-30% more power on turbocharged vehicles and you can expect to see around 15% on NASP engines, but the end result often differs on the upgrades you've applied and the condition of your engine.

Turbo modifications on the C16SE

To get a turbo working on a NASP engine there is a lot involved, from lowering compression ratio to improved fuel supply and mapping, so we have found a great guide to helpavoid the common pitfalls or end up with an unfinished project because you were not told what you were getting into by doing this on the C16SE.

The more air you can get into an engine, the more fuel it can burn and uprating the induction with a turbocharger upgrade makes major power gains.

When a car is fitted with a turbo parts are relatively easy and turbocharged engines use stronger components.

However every engines will need better parts at higher power limits

See where you'll find these restrictions and fit better quality crank and pistons to handle the power.

There are many car owners spending a a stack of money on turbo charger upgrades on the C16SE only to watch the car literally blow up when it's first rolling road session.

Bigger upgraded turbos commonly suffer low end lag, and smaller turbos spool up quickly but do not have the top end engines power gains.

Thanks to progress the selection of turbochargers is always developing and we commonly find variable vane turbochargers, permitting the vane profile is altered according to speed to lower lag and increase top end bhp.

Twin scroll turbochargers divert the exhaust flow into a couple of channels and push these at differently profiled vanes in the turbocharger. They also help the scavenging effect of the engine.

Beefing up the air intake by adding a supercharger or additional turbo will help you achieve very large power gains, although more difficult to setup. We have this article on twincharging if you want to read more.

Tips about fuel supply on the C16SE

Don't omit to improve the fuelling when you are increasing the performance - it makes the car more thirsty. Experienced mechanics will tell you to over specify your injectors flow rate.

The accepted safe increase is to add another 15% when specifying an injector, which takes into account injector deterioration and gives some spare capacity should the engine need more fuel.

Don't forget that different fuel grades will usually require different settings, a high octane fuel will burn more efficiently than lower octane fuel for example. A car will trim fuel supply to keep within the ideal air fuel mix but at the extreme ends you may need to adjust your injector capacity, or the mapping or you'll get flat spots and potential lean or rich fuel issues..

Recommended C16SE performance exhaust upgrades

We'd only recommend you look to increase your exhaust system with an upgraded one is if your current exhaust is creating a flow problem.

On most factory exhausts you'll find the exhaust flow rate is fine even on modest power gains, but on a serious tuning project with a big boost in power you will certainly need to get a better flowing exhaust.

Do not go with the largest exhaust you can find this will reduce the exhaust flow rate - the best exhausts for power gains are usually between one and a half to two and half inches. Your exhaust design, the bend angles and construction are what have more effect on flow rates than your pipe width to a certain extent. So the exhaust design is a big factor.

Typically exhaust restrictions can be traced to the catalyst installed, so adding a faster flowing performance alternative will help avoid this restriction.

Catalyst removal (NB:catalysts reduce harmful engine emissions) is illegal in most countries and regions.

Faults issues and things to look out for on the C16SE

Like most engines an C16SE, should have few issues if it gets properly serviced and looked after.

We cannot stress enough the need for oil changes with the correct grade of oil on the C16SE, failure to do this will exacerbate engine wear, on a tuned C16SE this is more important than ever and close attention should be paid to your maintenance schedule.

If you are interested in learning more or getting impartial tuning advice for your C16SE why not pop over to the forums at TorqueCars where you can chat about C16SE tuning options and read about others projects who may be planning to do similar modifications on their C16SE.

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