Toyota NZ Tuning

"All you need to know about performance tuning the Toyota NZ engine!"

Our aim here is to review NZ tuning and provide tips on the best upgrades.

Toyota NZ have loads of potential and with the ultimate uprated parts like remapping, turbo kits and camshafts you will greatly improve your driving pleasure.

History of the Engine

1NZ-FXE: from December 1997

  • Toyota Prius (XW10 & XW20)
  • Toyota Prius
  • Toyota Aqua
  • Toyota Yaris
  • Toyota Corolla (Axio/Fielder)
  • Toyota Sienta (2nd generation)

1NZ-FE: from July 1999

  • Toyota Vios/Belta
  • Toyota Yaris/Echo
  • Scion xA/Toyota ist
  • Scion xB (1st generation)/Toyota bB (1st generation)
  • Toyota Raum
  • Toyota Porte
  • Toyota Platz
  • Toyota Auris
  • Toyota Fun Cargo
  • Toyota Premio
  • Toyota Allion
  • Toyota Corolla (Axio/Fielder, RunX, Allex)
  • Toyota Sienta
  • WiLL VS
  • Toyota Probox
  • Toyota Ractis

1NZ-FXP: from 2017

  • Toyota JPN Taxi (AP10)

1NZ-FTE: from 2004

  • Toyota Vios Turbo (Thailand)
  • Toyota Vitz RS Turbo (Japan)
  • Toyota Corolla Axio GT (Japan)

2NZ-FE: from October 1999

  • Toyota Yaris/Echo/Vitz
  • Toyota Vios/Belta
  • Toyota Platz
  • Toyota Porte
  • Toyota Corolla (E140), Pakistan only
  • Toyota Corolla (E170), Pakistan only
  • Toyota bB
  • Toyota Ist
  • Toyota Corolla (E120), Japan and Middle East only

Tuning the Toyota NZ and best NZ performance parts.

Best NZ upgrades

Just because particular upgrades are popular with NZ owners it doesn't mean you should fit it, we will ultimate upgrades that will give your NZ the biggest power gain return for your cash.

Significant gains on the NZ can be made from camshaft upgrades. Altering the camshaft profile alters the intake and exhaust durations on the engine and can dramatically change the bhp and power output.

Fast road camshafts tend to raise the performance across the rev band, you may lose a little bottom end bhp but the high end rpm power will be lifted.

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

In a car driven daily you need to match your torque band to your cars usage.

I would be surprised if you find a NZ Motorsport camshaft is a pleasure to live with when in heavy traffic.

Some NZ engines respond better to different camshaft durations than others.

The map and fuel pump and injectors also will make differences on the power gains you'll hit.

A longer valve duration 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.

Stage 1 mods: Panel air filters, Remaps/piggy back ECU, Intake headers, Fast road camshaft, Drilled & smoothed airbox, Sports exhaust manifold.

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

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

The NZ engines are fantastic to work on and thanks to their popularity there are quite a few choices of parts and performance parts out there.

Remaps allows a tuner to to establish the full potential of all the modifications you've fitted to your NZ.

It will usually give around 30% more power on turbocharged vehicles and you can expect to see around 15% on NASP engines, but the outcome usually differs on the modifications you've applied and the condition of your engine.

It is the main goal to any engine tuning job to pull more fuel and air into your NZ

Intake manifold flow the air during the suck phase from the filter and allow it to be drawn into the engine cylinders.

The shape and flow rate of the Headers can make a big improvement to fuel atomisation and engine efficiency on the NZ.

On popular production engines intake headers are begging for motorsport parts, although some car makers provide reasonably well designed intake headers.

Big valve conversions on the NZ, doing a bit of 3 or 5 angle valve jobs and porting and head flowing will also boost performance, and importantly will raise potential for a greater performance increase on other modifications.

Turbo upgrades

NASP 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 NZ

It is common that there is a restriction in the air flow sensor (AFM/MAF/MAP) on the NZ when loads more air is being drawn into the engine.

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

Adding a supercharger or additional turbo will make large bhp gains, although more challenging to setup. We have this feature on twinchargers if you want to read more.

Fuelling

Don't forget to improve the fuelling when you are increasing the bhp - it makes the car more thirsty. We would recommend you to over specify your injectors flow rate.

The rule of thumb is to add another 20% when specifying an injector, this takes into account injector deterioration and affords some spare capacity should the engine require 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.

Exhaust

You only need to to replace your exhaust if your exhaust is creating a restriction.

On most factory exhausts you'll find the exhaust flow rate is still ok 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 balance the flow of air through the engine.

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

Usual exhaust restrictions come around the catalysts installed, so adding a better flowing sports alternative will help avoid this restriction.

Weak spots, Issues & problem areas on the NZ

The NZ engines are generally reliable and solid as long as they are regularly serviced and maintained.

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

For more information on Tuning your NZ engine please join us in our friendly forum where you can discuss tuning options in more detail with our NZ owners. It would also be worth reading our unbiased tuning 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 mods work best for them on each model of car. Comments are used to improve the accuracy of these NZ articles which are continually updated.

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