Nissan VR30DDTT Tuning

"All you need to know about performance parts and tuning the Nissan VR30DDTT engine!"

We get emails with people asking us for some tips on improving the VR30DDTT and which tuning modifications we rate as the best, so we've put together this web page to go over what, we feel, are the primary areas and methods of modifying and tuning on the VR30DDTT engine.

The Nissan VR30DDTT great bases for a tuning project and with a few sensible performance parts like ECU maps, turbo upgrades and camshafts you will noticeably maximise your driving enjoyment.

In this article we look at VR30DDTT tuning and highlight the premier modifications for your car.

History, Power & Specs of the VR30DDTT Engine

This twin turbo engine announced by Infinity in 2015 made headlines and won awards in 2017 and 2018 and grabbed attention, however it is very rare and hard to source, often being snapped up for engine swap projects.

300–400 hp (224–298 kW)

  • 2016-present Infiniti Q50
  • 2017-present Infiniti Q60
  • 2019-present Nissan Skyline

Tuning the Nissan VR30DDTT and best VR30DDTT performance parts.

Best VR30DDTT mods

Just because particular parts are are common on VR30DDTT it doesn't mean its worth having, we will concentrate on the optimum parts that will give your VR30DDTT the best value for money to power increase.

Altering your VR30DDTT camshaft will make a dramatic difference to the engine bhp. Choosing a higher performance camshaft profile raises the bhp accordingly.

Fast road camshafts tend to increase the performance across the rpm band, you might lose a little low end bhp but your higher rpm power will be lifted.

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

A Motorsport and race camshaft is not great driving around busy urban areas. This is because a competition cam causes a very lumpy idle, and makes the car more prone to stall or jerk along in stop start traffic, sadly though many ignore this and end up ruining a perfectly good car and having to revert back to a fast road, or OEM cam profile.

You should ideally optimize your power band to your preferences so for a daily driver stick with a shorter duration VR30DDTT camshaft

Some VR30DDTT engines respond better to extreme cam durations than others.

The engine timing and fuel pump and injectors also have an effect on the power gains you'll get.

Longer 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.

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Best Engine Mods for your car

  1. Engine Tunes - engine tuning/remapping provides the most advantage in terms of cost savings,  aftermarket ECUs, and piggyback ECUs are all alternatives.
  2. Fast road cams are one of the most significant mechanical changes, but they must be installed by someone who knows what they're doing and they are not always easy to source but you might find a local firm to regrind a stock camshaft.
  3. Intake and Exhaust - Note that on their own these mods will NOT ADD POWER in most cases, but they can help enhance power after other mods by removing the restriction.
  4. Upgrades to turbochargers and superchargers - forced induction is the most efficient approach to increase air supply, allowing you to burn more fuel and make more power. It is one of the most costly upgrades but provides the best gains.
  5. Head work - The goals of porting and flowing the head are to get air flowing into the engine while removing flow restrictions and turbulence.
  6. Typical stage 1 mods often include:
    Panel air filters, Remaps/piggy back ECU, Intake manifolds, Fast road camshaft, Sports exhaust header/manifold, drilled & smoothed airbox.

    Typical stage 2 mods often include:
    high flow fuel injectors, induction kit, fuel pump upgrades, Ported and polished head, Fast road cam, Sports catalyst & performance exhaust.

    Typical stage 3 mods often include:
    Crank and Piston upgrades to alter compression, Engine balancing & blueprinting, Competition cam, Internal engine upgrades (head flowing porting/bigger valves), Adding or Upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Twin charging conversions.

    The VR30DDTT engines are fantastic to work on and we're happy to report there is a lot of mods and performance parts out there.

    ECU mapping will help release the full potential of all the mods you've done to your VR30DDTT.

    (In some cases, as the factory ECU is locked flashing is not an option, so an aftermarket ECU is the route to take, and many of these will outperform factory ECU's but make sure it has knock protection and that you get it setup properly.)

    It will usually give you around 30% more power on turbocharged vehicles and you can expect to see around 15% on NA (naturally aspirated) engines, but the end result usually differs on the mods you've fitted and the condition of your engine.

    Getting fuel and air into your VR30DDTT is vital to any engine performance tuning task.

    Intake manifold carry the air during the suck phase from the air filter and allow it to be drawn into the engine and mixed with fuel.

    Shape and rate of flow of the Intake manifold can make a big improvement to fuel atomisation and engine efficiency on the VR30DDTT.

    It's not uncommon that intake are improved through motorsport parts, although a few OEM provide reasonably good intake.

    Adding a VR30DDTT larger valve kit, doing a bit of port matching and head flowing will also improve performance, & more importantly will allow you to get raising the performance increase on other upgrades.

    VR30DDTT Turbo upgrades

    NA (naturally aspirated) engines need quite a lot of work when you add a turbo, so we have a separate guide to help you take into account the pros and cons of going this route on your VR30DDTT

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

    If the engine has forced induction parts are giving better power gains and you will discover turbo charged engines are built using better components.

    There are reliable limits for every engine, with some being extremely strong and some just sufficiently able to handle stock powerSee where you'll find these limitations and upgrade to higher quality components to utilize the power.

    There are many people spending a a stack of money on turbo upgrades on the VR30DDTT only to experience the engine catastrophically fail just after it's first rolling road session.

    Big upgraded turbo units will usually suffer no power at low rpm, and little turbo units spool up much more quickly but won't have the peak end engines power gains.

    Thankfully the world of turbo chargers is always moving on and we now see variable vane turbo chargers, where the vane profile is altered according to speed to lower lag and increase top end torque.

    Twin scroll turbo chargers divert the exhaust gases into 2 channels and direct these at differently designed vanes in the turbocharger. They also increase the scavenging effect of the engine.

    It is not unusual that there is a restriction in the air flow sensor (AFM/MAF/MAP) on the VR30DDTT when loads more air is being fed into the engine.

    We see 4 bar air sensors coping with quite large power gains, whereas the OEM air sensor sapped performance at a much lower level.

    Adding a supercharger or additional turbo will make large bhp gains, although more difficult to install. We have this article on twincharging if you want to read more.


    When you boost the power you will need to ramp up to the fuel delivery.

    More power needs more fuel. It is important to be generous with your flow rate on the injectors.

    The accepted safe increase is to add 20% when fitting an injector, which takes into account injector deterioration and gives you some spare capacity should the engine need more fuel.

    We think this one is common sense, but you'll need to match your fuel injector to the type of fuel your car uses as well.

    All the following flywheel power targets will assume an injector duty cycle of 80% and a base of 58psi of fuel pressure at idle.

    6 Cylinder NA (naturally aspirated) engines

    • 58 PSI 189cc/min 200hp
    • 58 PSI 284cc/min 300hp
    • 58 PSI 378cc/min 400hp
    • 58 PSI 568cc/min 600hp

    6 Cylinder turbocharged engines

    • 58 PSI 227cc/min 200hp
    • 58 PSI 341cc/min 300hp
    • 58 PSI 454cc/min 400hp
    • 58 PSI 682cc/min 600hp

    VR30DDTT Performance Exhausts

    You should look to improve your exhaust if your exhaust is creating a restriction.

    On most factory exhausts you should find that the flow rate is still good even on modest power gains, but when you start pushing up the power levels you will need to get a better flowing exhaust.

    Sports exhausts can help balance the flow of air through the engine.

    But if the exhaust pipe is too large, ie: it's over 2.5 inches bore, you will lose much of the flow rate and end up sapping power and torque.

    Typically exhaust restrictions come around the emissions filters installed, so adding a higher flowing performance catalyst removes the restriction. We note that performance cats perform similarly to decats and have the added benefit of keeping your car street legal, as decats or catalyst removal is illegal in most territories for road going cars.

    Weak spots, Issues & problem areas on the VR30DDTT

    The VR30DDTT engines are generally reliable and solid units, as long as you follow the manufacturers service schedules, and use a good quality oil to ensure longevity. Few problems should happen as long as they are regularly serviced and maintained.

    Carbon build up in the head, particularly around the valves which will sap power or create flat spots, this is a larger issue on direct injection engines but should be looked out for on all engines. We have tips on removing carbon build up.

    Some of our members have had issues with flat spots or glitches after applying mods and upgrades or tuning, this is not usually related to this engines design, so instead see our article on diagnosing flat spots and problems after tuning which should help you get the bottom of this issue.

    Regular oil changes are vital on the VR30DDTT, especially when tuned and will help extend the life and reliability of the engine.

    If you would like to know more, or just get some friendly advice on Tuning your VR30DDTT engine please join us in our car forums where you can discuss with our VR30DDTT owners. It would also be worth reading our unbiased articles to get a full grasp of the benefits and drawbacks of each modification.

    Please help us improve these tips by sending us your feedback in the comments box below.

    We love to hear what our visitors have got up to and which modifications work best for you on your car. Which helps us keep our guides and tips up to date helping others with their modified car projects. Your feedback and comments are used to keep this page up to date, and help improve the accuracy of these VR30DDTT tuning guides which get regular updates and revisions.

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