VW Performance Parts – Engine Upgrades

If you're like me you want your car to go faster. There are a few easy ways to get more "fast" out of your volkswagen. Depending on what type of VW you have the selection of parts available to you will vary wildly. There are a lot of people out there tuning their golf / GTI but obviously there are a lot fewer Toureg parts out there.

There is a large community of VW tuners out there and visiting the forums where these people hang out is a very good idea. They can give you an idea of ​​what to expect out of various aftermarket parts. If the part exists the chances are good that someone on these forums has tried it out and written about it. This may sound silly but a couple of the best things you can do to make sure your car is running its best is to get your car a tune up and an oil change. Adding performance parts to a car that is not already running its best is not going to be nearly as effective. Another important but overlooked thing is making sure your tires are properly inflated. This can improve the handling of your VW as well as ensure you're getting optimum gas mileage. Once these basic steps have been completed there's a few other things you can do to upgrade your ride.

Engine / Power Upgrades

1) Upgrade your intake . This can be as simple as making sure your current air filter is clean. The more air your engne can get the better it will run. The next easiest option is to install a high performance air filter that replaces the stock one. These provide better air flow which should increase engine power slightly. The next step after that would have to install a complete aftermarket take system. Cold Air Intakes draw cool air from outside the engine compartment rather than regular systems which suck in hot air from around your engine. Most of these systems are fairly easy to install and can be done yourself in a few hours or less. An aftermarket take can cost anywhere from $ 50 all the way up to $ 300.

2) Upgrade your headers : The headers and downpipe is where the exhaust first leaves your engine on its way towards the atmosphere. Higher performance headers allow more exhaust fumes to escape, which can give a dramatic increase to horsepower. Aftermarket header prices can range from a couple hundred dollars to well over $ 1000 depending on what type of vehicle you have and what brand you choose. One thing to look out for is that cheaper headers tend to have fitment issues (you can not get them to line up correctly for a simple bolt-on installation), and they may have resonance issues. Resonance is caused by the exhaust vibrating the metal and will create a noise that others most people. Headers can be installed yourself if you're experienced enough.

3) Catback exhaust : These exhaust systems start where the headers end. They connect to the Catalic converter and replace the entire exhaust system to the back of the car. Depending on how free streaming the stock exhaust is on your car this may be one of the last upgrades you choose to do. These exhaust systems are not cheap and may require welding and / or professional installation. They usually give your car a higher performance sound over the stock setup. It is also possible to just replace the mufflers if all you care about is the sound.

4) Tires . Probably the most overlooked performance enhancement you can do for your car is to replace the tires. Adding lots of engine power will not do you any good if you can not get that power to the pavement. Replacing your tires with a wider tire or tires with a stickier compound will help you get more transaction. Choosing tires is typically a compromise between Performance, Ride Comfort, and Tread Life. High performance tires do not last as long as regular ones. High performance tires can cost quite a bit of money too.

5) Underdrive Pulleys . You can reclaim some lost power from your engine by installing a lightweight crank pulley. These are made of aluminum and tend to weigh several times less than the stock ones they replace. Underdrive pulleys are slightly smaller than the stock ones, which means they turn the accessories they operate at a slightly lower speed. This is not a problem for most people unless they have a huge stereo system. These pulleys are usually less than a couple hundred dollars, and can be installed yourself. You will need a breaker bar to get the old one off, and a serious torque wrench to attach the new one. The last thing you want is the pulley coming off while you're driving down the freeway!

6) Turbochargers . If you have lots of money and are serious about upgrading your car a turbo kit might be what you need. Turbos use the exhaust from your engine to spin a turbine, which forces air into your engine. This pressurizes the air and improves horsepower dramatically. These are not very likely to be something you would install yourself. They also may require other configurations to your car, so the cost is out of reach for most people.

I hope you've learned some of the basics of how you can upgrade your VW to get better performance out of it. Just remember to do your research before making a purchase, as there are a lot of products out there trying to scam people like us.