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Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8] 

 

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 Post subject: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 3:46 pm 
Oompa Loompa
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Hello, first time poster here.

I just bought an AU series 1 XR8 the other day, and am feeling its not much better than my AU series 2 straight 6 (ex-police)

The torque is a clear improvement, but the car doesn't really feel like a V8.

Are there any simple, relatively inexpensive upgrades or modifications I can engineer to give it just that little bit more grunt? Any general suggestions about the car itself?

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:04 pm 
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Heads, cam, intake and exhaust. But cheap mods, no.

You could always do a set of 1.72 rockers. yours should only have the 1.6's in it, so these will be a step up.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:09 pm 
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CRL13X wrote:
Hello, first time poster here.

I just bought an AU series 1 XR8 the other day, and am feeling its not much better than my AU series 2 straight 6 (ex-police)

The torque is a clear improvement, but the car doesn't really feel like a V8.

Are there any simple, relatively inexpensive upgrades or modifications I can engineer to give it just that little bit more grunt? Any general suggestions about the car itself?


Engine you have is a 185Kw, don't take this the wrong way but should have tried to get an AUII or III. Maybe you got it cheap. The AUII XR6 is probably quicker than the XR8.

As Dave said, heads, cam, Exhaust etc.

Do the intake and exhaust first, try and get a set of decent extractors and change the MAF and Throttle body.
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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 5:28 pm 
Oompa Loompa
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Ride: Falcon AU I XR8

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Yes, you are right, I know the AU II or III are much better in comparison.
Also, again you are correct about it bring cheap. I got it for about $3500, so its not exactly an expensive purchase.
I bought it mainly because it sounds nice and runs well, the body is in very good conditions, with the paint in reasonable condition.
Also it had a body kit and 18" Mags, so it looks the part at least.


I was definitely considering the intake, and was wondering what the advantages of a pod filter would be over the standard air box. If any. As for the exhaust, I don't know for sure yet (haven't researched it yet) but I think it has a sports system installed.
I'll try to find exactly what it has before posting next.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 5:39 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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If the engine is mechanically sound I would leave the engine alone and fit a centrifugal supercharger. Excellent bang for the bucks, and if/when you sell the car you can take it off and get most of your money back. There are bolt-on kits for stock engines you can fit yourself that will add about 80-100kW. The engine then behaves just like a stock engine until you get on the gas pedal. I would add a set of crane cams valve springs & retainers p/n 44308 as a precaution

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 11:04 pm 
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don't worry about doing a pod filter. Get youself a Edelbrock RPM II manifold. Thats more the intake I was refering to, the actual intake manifold. The explorer you have on there now is an ok bit of gear but there is much better options out there than stock.

A set of AFR 165's will wake it right up, or you could alos go trickflow 170 TW heads.

It all depends on budget. You need to give us an idea of whats in your pocket so we can tailor an answer to suit.

A CF Charger is cheap, but it will cost as much as the car to buy, then tuning.

A set of 1.72 rollers by comparison is cheap, you can pick up a set of scorpions for under $500 from the US delivered.

What are your expectations and budget? Your not going to be able to simply slap on a pod filter and change an exhaust tip and pick up any noticable power. Its a V8. Power costs money.

Just build a stroker for it. something 363ci will wake it right up.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2014 7:21 am 
Oompa Loompa
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Ride: Falcon AU I XR8

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Budget wise, I was figuring cheap, since the car is still going to have to be a daily driver. This isn't yet a toy, so I can't really splurge on it. I was figuring if I went $500-$1000 should do something. I know most modifications start from about a grand, but I'm not looking for excessive power, just enough to make it fun (in the right places of course)

Since I haven't had the car long, I don't know if its stock, but I can be fairly certain it is.
On the weekend I'm gonna get the spanners out, but until then, work takes all my daylight.


I cannot test the car properly yet either, as I've ordered 2 new rear shock absorbers, and until I install them, the roads here are far too bumpy and throw me everywhere even with driving easy.
Once the suspension is tight however, I will be giving the car a workout. The old highway I live on is the perfect test. Sharply inclined corners, banked curves and a few decent straights plus good elevation changes.


Anyway, back to the topic, I probably can't (read don't want to) spend a lot on this car. I'm looking at buying something newer (and manual) before doing so.

E: here's the engine bay.
Image

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2014 6:54 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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With your $1k budget I'd install a set of 4.11 diff gears and have your LSD checked/overhauled. You will get a good response, but be prepared for cruise RPM around 2350 at 100kph. 3.9 gears would be about 100RPM lower

You'll need several thousand dollars to do anything meaningful with the engine - alloy heads, intake, rockers, small parts & fitting is an easy $4.5k and you still have a used short block. A SC is around $5.5k, but second hand can be cheaper. A 363 is probably close to $10k using a budget BOSS 5.0BB block. For comparison I build a budget 347 that makes about 260kW for around NZ$3400 + an AU 5.0 core motor. There is no labour cost included, but I will spend around 12 hours in total

 

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XA Faimont 351C, AU2 XR8 Manual 5.0, DA LTD 5.0, Mk1 Capri 5.0, 1995 Mustang 5.0, EF2 XR8 Manual, EF2 Fairmont Ghia 5.0, AU3 XR8 Auto, AU2 XR8 Auto, AU2 XR8 Manual Ute, TE Cortina 5.0 Manual, DU LTD 5.0 soon to be manual

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2014 10:14 pm 
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Horsepower costs money its simple.

You can get complete 347 short motors for around 5k, you still use your top end and accessories, Expect about 370-400HP at the fly.

My 347 build cost almost 9k including heads, not including installation. After I got the final bill, I just stopped looking at $$ and wanted it running.

Even a set of diff gears will wake her up though.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 4:23 pm 
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Ride: ford falcon au3 xr8

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CRL13X wrote:
Budget wise, I was figuring cheap, since the car is still going to have to be a daily driver. This isn't yet a toy, so I can't really splurge on it. I was figuring if I went $500-$1000 should do something. I know most modifications start from about a grand, but I'm not looking for excessive power, just enough to make it fun (in the right places of course)

Since I haven't had the car long, I don't know if its stock, but I can be fairly certain it is.
On the weekend I'm gonna get the spanners out, but until then, work takes all my daylight.


I cannot test the car properly yet either, as I've ordered 2 new rear shock absorbers, and until I install them, the roads here are far too bumpy and throw me everywhere even with driving easy.
Once the suspension is tight however, I will be giving the car a workout. The old highway I live on is the perfect test. Sharply inclined corners, banked curves and a few decent straights plus good elevation changes.


Anyway, back to the topic, I probably can't (read don't want to) spend a lot on this car. I'm looking at buying something newer (and manual) before doing so.

E: here's the engine bay.
Image


with around $1000 to spend your not going to be able to do much.
if it still has stock exhaust you could upgrade to a single 3" or duel 2.5" and some high flow cats, or no cats if you hate the environment. that's close to $1000 there
small things like fitting a ba xr6 turbo snorkel to the factory airbox will get a bit more air in, and is pretty cheap to buy..
then there is things like j3 chip or dyno tuning , that's anywhere from $400 to $1500 depending on what you choose to do, like tune it your self or pay someone.
then there is heads, cam, rockers ect then your up into the $2500-3000+ area..
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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 4:26 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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I ended up taking my std xr8 from 15.4's to 14.3's with these mods

Quarterhorse (tuned by me)
Dual 2.5'' exhaust with 2.5'' cats
1.72 yella terra roller rockers.
3.91 diff gears

The car already came with genie e series headers so i didnt need to buy headers, i also played around alot with different fuel types e85,100ron,98ron...

But in the end 98ron made the most power while also running the best time, this of course was over a period of two years.

I believe adding a stally to that would have gotten me a 13.99, none of this is cheap by any standard but you dont have to dump 10g's into your car to have some fun and crack a 13
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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 6:42 am 
Oompa Loompa
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Ride: Falcon AU I XR8

Location: Wootton
NSW, Australia

Thanks for the suggestions everyone.

After a little mechanical work on the car, it turns out the lack of power was being caused by a dirty throttle body, incorrectly tuned throttle and incorrectly tuned oxygen sensor.

The car runs much nicer now and I'm happy enough with the power output.

Quick question though, while getting new shock absorbers in the rear, my mechanic noted I will also need new shock mounts and an exhaust system. It appears the exhaust had been bodged up.

Any suggestions on where yo get top end mounts and any recommended exhaust? I don't want the factory exhaust which was a stupid two into one design.

Thanks

 

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Owner of a 1992 EB Falcon, 2000 AU series II falcon and now a 1999 AU series I AU XR8

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 4:28 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Manta do a dual 2.5'' cats back mandrel bent for around the $800ish mark, im not sure on shock mounts though.
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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 6:09 pm 
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rear upper shock mounts are not available anywhere..
ford dont sell them anymore and no one makes them aftermarket..

only option is to find good used ones ....
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 Post subject: Re: Looking for small power improvements [1999 AU I 5L XR8]
Posted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 11:15 pm 
Oompa Loompa
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Ride: Falcon AU I XR8

Location: Wootton
NSW, Australia

That's kinda disappointing. My mechanic did suggest eBay when telling me to get some, now I guess I know why.

As for the exhaust, found a place not too far away that quoted me an entire exhaust, mufflers included, installed new, for around $500. 3 inch single pipe.

 

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