Volvo 850 Tuning

"850 shows aerodynamics are not needed with lots of power!"

Following success in the Touring car championships, Volvo carved out a name for themselves.

Today there are lots of tuning options and upgrades for the 850 and if you choose them wisely you can have an awesome supercar chaser.

Volvo 850 Tuning

Handling modifications are usually your first port of call for the 850. We suggest that you fit uprated suspension and lower the car by 30-35mm. Larger drops require arch work - especially on models already equipped with sports suspension.

Tuning tips and articles

Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums

 

Our aim in 850 engine tuning should be to increase peak power and Torque at the top end.

Spending a little money on the engine and handling will transform your car into a very credible performer.

Smaller engines do not provide much of a return in terms of power, so start with a bigger engine. Engine swaps are a good option if you have a small engine size.

850 Engine Tuning Mods.

The following modifications are usually performed by our members, decide how far you want to go before you begin.

Petrol engines available

  • 2.0–2.5L I5 (93kW–186kW)

Diesel:

  • 2.5L I5 (103kW)

Getting the right mods for your planned usage of the car is vital. Stage 3 (competition) mods just don't work well on the road.

Stage 1 mods: Exhaust, Panel air filter, Remap, lighter flywheel

Stage 2 mods: Fast road cam, ported and polished head, fuel injector & fuel pump upgrades,

Stage 3 mods: Engine balancing, forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Internal engine upgrades (pistons/head/valves), competition cam.

Peak power is good on competition cars but for a drivable and fun car you need a wide torque band and perhaps extending the rev range.

The whole point of our guides is to give a brief overview of customizing upgrades and point you in the right direction, our forum is the place to go for detailed advice and tips on your modified car project, the best sport mods and all aspects of modding cars.One of the most cost effective mechanical mods you can do to your NASP engine is to fit a fast road camshaft .

It maximises the intake and exhaust durations and pushes up the power if done right. Ideally you'd add other mods and finish up with a reflashed ECU. 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.

If you find you suffer from flat spots and surges after your motorsport modifications you should check the fuelling and try a higher octane fuel as well. Improving the injectors is another beneficial modification and will deliver sufficient fuel.

Uprate the fuel pump to cope with the extra fuel requirements of your tuned 850's uprated injectors.

Volvo 850 intake and Exhaust Tuning.

Breathing mods are usually next up. Induction kits only help to boost performance if the air intake is struggling! Adding an induction kit to most low power engines will see NO LOW END POWER GAIN AT ALL. If you have heavily modified your engine and it's need for air INCREASES DRAMATICALLY then an induction kit is the answer and will help remove this restriction.

For most 850 engines TorqueCars would suggest you just go with a washable panel air filter. On heavily tuned engines and turbo vehicles an induction kit will help release the power providing you address the problem of needing cold air.

Sports exhausts generally help improve air flow through the engine but do not go too wide or you may end up will reduce the flow rate. Stick to 1.5 to 2.5 inches as a rule of thumb.

flowed (porting and polishing) the head will allow you to maximise your air/fuel charge. Leave this to a professional though with a proper flow bench and machine tools When you heavily modify your 850 you will often find that the standard clutch starts to slip so get an uprated clutch. The best mods we recommend for your 850 are Remapping or piggy back ecu, fast road cam and air intake and exhaust.

NASP engines do not achieve big power gains if you remap them, unless you have done extensive modifications. With turbocharged engines this is another story. A remapped turbo will give massive power gains and fully release the potential power of the engine.

We've also seen some tuners playing with twincharging conversions and making some seriously high power gains.

The most phenomenal power gains for NASP engines usually involve the addition of forced induction. Superchargers are generally easier to add than a turbo. Turbos provide boost in exponential proportion to th engine speed and this can make mapping difficult.

Superchargers, however will give a boost which is proportional to engine speed so is easier to map. To cope with forced induction you will usually need to decrease the engines compression ratio .

The benefits of alloy wheels include a lower unsprung weight and more efficient brake cooling. It is worth noting that although they can look cool on the 850, big alloy wheels will actually decrease your performance. The larger you go the lower your top speed will be due to the change in your effective final drive ratio. Although some people have gone larger, we would stick to a 16 inch rim size as the maximum.

Please join us in our forum to discuss the 850 options in more detail with our 850 owners. It would also be worth reading our Volvo tuning articles to get a full grasp of the pros and cons of each type of modification.

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One Response to “850 Tuning”

  1. SEAN WILSON says:

    I’m converting my 850 10v to a T5 using a t5 engine, how much of the wiring loom will I need?



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