Vauxhall Cavalier Tuning

"That's a Cavalier attitude."

The Sri 130 was one of the best Cavaliers and if you have a smaller engined Cavalier you should really look out and see if you can track an SRi engine down for a swap. Handling modifications are usually your first port of call for the Cavalier. With its wide track it will corner at phenomenal speeds. You should drop the car by around 37mm and fit stiffer dampers, bigger drops will need other modifications in most instances.

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Turning our attention to the Cavaliers engine we need to get a bit more power out of the top end.

Following our tips for tuning your Cavalier you will end up with a practical scorching hatch that will embarrass bigger modern cars.

Smaller engines do not provide much of a return in terms of power so start with a bigger engine.

Vauxhall Cavalier Tuning modifications.

By raising peak power and improving the efficiency of the engine you maintain economy and reliability. Fast road cams offer one of the biggest performance gains as far as a bolt on part goes.

Stage 1 mods: Suspension upgrade (drop 30-40mm), Panel air filter, Alloy wheels, Remap, Lighter flywheel, Sports exhaust.

Stage 2 mods: fuel pump upgrades, Fast road cam, high flow fuel injector, Power/Sport clutch, Ported and polished head.

Stage 3 mods: Engine balancing, Sports gearbox, Competition cam, Adding or upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Internal engine upgrades (pistons/head/valves).

You will need to ensure that the engine is not starved of fuel so will need to uprate the fuelling. You can get a more snappy acceleration by fitting a fuel pressure boost valve. To get sufficient fuel you may need to uprate the injectors on your engine. A fuel pump will only deliver a finite amount of fuel, so you may need to uprate this.

You need to keep as much low end torque as possible and aim to achieve a long power band across the rev range rather than a narrow top end power spike.

The whole point of our pointers is to give a little insight into the world of car tuning performance parts and point you in the right direction, our forum is where you can ask for more detailed advice and tips on your modified car project, the best sport parts and all aspects of modding cars.

One of the biggest mechanical mods you can do on your NASP engine is to fit a fast road camshaft .

It improves the intake and exhaust durations and pushes up the power if done right. Ideally you'd add other mods and finish up with a performance chip.

We'd also caution you not to go with a motor sport cam as this upsets the engines idling and general town driving characteristics.You will need to ensure that the engine is not starved of fuel so will need to uprate the fuelling.

Using high octane petrol is another option if you find you are suffering from pinking or premature ignition on your Vauxhall project after fitting other motorsport parts.

To get sufficient fuel you may need to uprate the injectors on your engine. Uprate the fuel pump to cope with the extra fuel requirements of your tuned Cavaliers uprated injectors.

Vauxhall Cavalier Intake and Exhaust.

The next area for modification is the intake and exhaust. Induction kits work well on turbo engines and larger engines, for the smaller Cavalier engines you should go with a sports panel air filter. Do not go with the biggest exhaust you can find - the best for power gains are usually between 2 to 2.5 inches.

In nearly all cases of Cavalier tuning your clutch will start to slip and this needs to be uprated - read our article on clutches for more information.

Vauxhall Cavalier Wheel modifications.

The benefits of alloy wheels include a lower unsprung weight and more efficient brake cooling. The downside to large alloy wheels on your Cavalier is that you alter your effective final drive ratio and this will have a detrimental effect on performance. Although some people have gone larger we would stick to a 17 inch rim size as the maximum.

Please join us in our forum to discuss the Cavalier options in more detail with our Cavalier owners. Look at our Vauxhall tuning articles to get a full grasp of the pros and cons of each type of modification.

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