Top 10 Ways to Soup Up a Car
By Editorial Staff
Contributed by Paul Seaburn, Catalogs.com Top 10 Guru
The days of Detroit muscle cars roaring down American highways may be over, but that doesn’t mean guys and gals too don’t still dream of souping up their rides to get a little more speed, power and style.
We’re not suggesting breaking any speed laws here, just having a little more fun when you drive. Some of these suggestions can be handled by a backyard mechanic while others should be left to a professional. In either case, get ready to get a little grease on as you soup up your car.
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10. Call in the Air Force
Replacing your standard air filter with a high-flow filter and keeping it clean is a quick and easy way to get a small boost in horsepower and fuel efficiency. Shop in a catalog for the muscle car enthusiast to get the right filters and parts for your model.
9. Go Electric
If you’re driving an older car, you know that the engine is cooled by a fan that is turned by a belt which uses engine power. You can regain some of that power by replacing the mechanical fan with an aftermarket electric fan.
8. Chip Ahoy
The efficiency of today’s car engines is managed by a computer chip which regulates fuel injection. Preprogrammed performance chips are available or you can purchase a programmer device and modify it yourself. If you can’t find the chip, ask a mechanic.
7. Put It On Your Turbo-Charge
Turbo chargers use the exhaust to spin a rotor that pushes more fresh air into the fuel mixture. Aftermarket turbo chargers are expensive and challenging to install because the air intake system and the exhaust system have to be modified, but the performance improvement is significant.
6. Get Exhausted
Once you get more fuel and air into the engine, the next step is to get the exhaust out more efficiently. That starts with replacing the standard exhaust manifolds with exhaust headers that eliminate back pressure. Another boost can be obtained by adding a true dual-exhaust system, but check you local regulations on noise and removal of catalytic converters before doing this.
5. Spin Your Wheels
Where the rubber meets the road is another good spot to soup up your car’s performance. Performance tires improve acceleration and cornering and give better response to the driver in higher speed conditions. On the downside, they wear out quicker and are nosier, rougher-riding and more expensive. Just keeping your old tire properly inflated will also help.
4. Lose Some Weight
Cars are like humans – the less weight they have to carry, the faster they are. Get rid of unnecessary items inside the car and consider replacing the front hood with a lightweight fiberglass hood. If you have to carry anything, put it in the trunk where the weight will help the rear traction.
3. Get Spoiled
Lightweight fiberglass rear spoilers give your car a speedier and sportier look while also offering a bit of aerodynamic performance.
2. Sound Big
A thumping bass speaker that sounds like you’re searching for oil will make your car feel more powerful and move others out of your way – even if it’s just to pull over to put their fingers in their ears. And nothing makes a ride more fun that loud car songs by the Beach Boys, The Boss and the Cars.
1. Look Souped Up
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The safest way to put some ‘hot’ in your hot rod is with flames, stripes and a smoking paint job. This tip isn’t limited to any one kind of car. In fact, even your little four-cylinder snail sedan or eco-friendly hybrid will feel like a muscle car decked out with custom-painted flames.
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