Tuning Essentials: Performance #2

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PERFORMANCE! HORSEPOWER! TUNING! $12,000 ENGINE REBUILD, SOOOOOON! Apologies, I got carried away watching Regular Car Reviews on YouTube. The truth is, little gets us – the PASMAG crew – more excited than the prospect of taking apart a car with the intent of putting it back together to go faster, handle better, and stop quicker. It’s a great feeling to see a well-executed project come to fruition. With that said, success only comes with strategic planning, realistic budgeting, and choosing the proper (not always the most expensive) components for your driving aspirations.

Our Ultimate Performance Guide is set to help you tackle all those things and more. With buyers guides, 101s, and words from some of the most influential tuners and shopkeepers in our industry, we’ve put together an issue that tackles many of the common issues associated with tuning projects.

For starters, we dive into the empty engine bays of some of the most popular platforms that are awaiting upgraded power. Ryan Basseri, head of Rywire, and Eric Daoust, owner of Teknotik, give us the down-low on everything from Civics and B18s, to 240s and LS V8s, to the issues of bigger power plants in smaller cars. Later on, our Performance on a Budget feature looks at where you should – and shouldn’t – be putting your money as a novice or first-time builder. Time to start saving, folks.

Builder/tuner extraordinaire Niel Tjin has been making waves in the industry since it began, and his latest endeavors have seen him working on some of the auto manufacturing industries most prized possessions. He’s been working closely with Ford for much of the last five years, and we look at the air ride Mustang GT that started it all. Never thought air would complement horsepower? Find out more inside.

Next – or NEXTMOD, we should say – we visit those JDM specialists to get a glimpse inside their shop and some of the gems within. These guys have stayed true to themselves since the beginning, and now have one of the most stacked performance vehicle lineups on the continent.

In our Legends Series last issue, we looked at racing and tuning veteran Kenny Tran. This time, we’re featuring his 1,000+ horsepower Jotech Stage 6-S GT-R. Continuing the Legends Series for this issue, we have a long and intimate chat with engineer and building mastermind Bisi Ezerioha of Bisimoto Engineering. If you’ve ever wanted to know where the incredible creativity stems from one of the industry’s best, you’ll want to read this.

Stephen Papadakis has already been the focus of our Legends Series in the past, and this year he’s looking at adding another trophy to his mantel by capturing a third Formula D title with the Scion tC2. Tanner Foust and Fredric Aasbo give us their professional insight on just how capable the tC is. If you’re looking for a new project car, this might be what pushes you over the edge.

Of course, you can’t perform if you don’t have the proper upgrades, so our Buyers Guides this issue feature the best of the necessities: intakes, exhaust, forced induction, engine essentials, drivetrain, chassis, aero, suspension, brakes and perhaps most importantly, oil and lube. It’s importantly to keep everything slippery and wet, because A) you’ll get more power, and B) it’ll prolong the life of those (not too cheap) upgrades you just laid down some serious cash for.

It used to be that performance was based on one thing: horsepower. Now, we know that it’s but a fraction of what makes you go fast. From exhaust to ECU tunes, suspension and brakes, and a little word from the wise, we hope this issue lets you see the whole picture of how to maximize your ride, and most importantly, the fun you get out of it.