Every stock car has following limits:
Most of limits were resolved by following upgrades:
- seat upgrade – racing FW – Hajes Inside NM
- brake pads Ferodo FCP1641 DS2500
- stainless steel braided brake hoses Hel
- premium brake fluid Motul
- universal compromise Continetal WinterContact TS850
- Alu-alloy engine cover (most often destroyed part on my car)
- Ekolube Gear and Engine oil additive; it suppose to reduce friction by 70% (update 22/5/15)
- onboard diagnostic system Polar FIS+ Advanced (update 6/6/15)
- light alloy rims and sport tires (update 8/8/15)
- Eibach anti-roll kit – rear (update 2/8/15)
- Eibach anti-roll kit – front (update 8/13/15)
- improved cooling of engine (update 17/9/15)
- ECU remap v1.0 by HR (update 17/9/15)
- ECU remap v3.0 by Miguel C.
- rear brakes upgrade – Brembo + Jurid White brake pads (update 8/4/16)
- Brembo brake pads – Jurid White failure (update 04/06/2016)
- rally suspension Protlum (update 26/08/2016)
- engine oil upgrade – Mobil One Peak Life 5W-50 (update 26/08/2016)
- ATE Powerdisc discs (update 26/08/2016)
- rear brake pads Ferodo DS 2500 (update 06/11/2016)
- Mobil 1 Peak Life 5W-50 aftermath (update 18/01/2017)
- racing brake system for poor (update 11/02/2017)
- brake fluid Castrol React SRF Racing
- new alloy rims OZ Racing/MSW 85 + Yokohama Advan Neova AD08R
- experiment with refurbished Garrett turbo
- rear brake pads Pagid RSL19
- Tilton proportioning valve
- ECU calibration HR_v5.12 from HR
- new tires Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 225/45 R17
- check out latest upgrades and experiments
I just bought this car – it is hard to go back in time. It has got more power/torque but it is stock car with comfort suspension and brakes.
Despite, Skoda Octavia has got vents for brakes, I’ve managed to burn brake pads. Stock brake pads are designed for cold bite and low operational temperatures. Their thermal capacity is easily exceeded but racing-style braking (I should never learn racing techniques during karting).
I was thinking about vRS version but this car is same with smaller turbo (less lag) and brakes – it doesn’t bother me because all will be replaced according HRS and HIN specification. This car has a potential and long way to go – but I am thinking about whether it is worthy. It is still Skoda family car and my heart belong to Japanese warriors – Subaru Impreza, the only real public racing car.
It is real dilemma because costs of upgrades exceeds a value of car – is it worthy on family car?
- six speed gearbox is great but gear ratio is weird – I would rather see 6th gear at about 130kmh, instead on 90kmh
- it has got decent fuel consumption if you keep it at optimal revs – at about 1750rpm (where turbo starts to kick) up to 2000rpm. It can run up to 4l/100km at low revs. On highways at 2500rpm – you are up to 6.5l/100km average.
- it seems to be lazy if you don’t know how to drive it. Turbo has peak torque (limited by ECU maps) at 1750-2500rpm and peak power output at 4000rpm. Simply put, you have to whip the horses under bonnet – it gets wild at about 3500rpm. Be prepared for regular visits of fuel stations because this beast eats about 10-20l/100km. My favourite steep sneaky alpine roads require 25l/100km.
- suspension is horrible – it is like a boat on rough seas.
- brakes are decent for stock car – I can’t wait for brake upgrades.
Limits and solutions
- brake pads – test how good thermal capacity has got stock brake discs. I don’t do tracks – I’m a rally, hillclimb guy. My driving style is biased towards cold bite and intermittent short hard braking periods. We will see how Ferodo DS2500 pads will over heat discs and boil brake fluid. Next step will be racing brake fluid and brake cooling. Since, there is limited grip from stock suspension – rear brakes deliver very little brake output due heavy nose diving. Until sport suspension upgrade – I guess Ferodo pads will do.
- excessive body roll – common improvement is anti-roll kit. Since, it is part of suspension system – it’ll be my first upgrade despite I’m sceptical about any real life advantage except reduced lateral (sideways) roll.
- nose diving – stock cars are designed for comfort and car is decent once it’s fully loaded. Then balance is almost optimal. I drive alone – car handling, braking balance is nightmare. Only solution is sport suspension and arm bushes.
- ESP, ABS, EDL – it is like tourist cameras. All fancy assistants know what to do in standard situations but horribly fails at anything else. I can lock the wheels and ABS doesn’t even notice. ESP + EDL (used in pseudo-AWD systems such as Haldex and quattro) is joke . I got understeer on the snow. Before electronic woke up, I had car balanced out – shocking part is, I was quicker than electronic. I wonder who did set-up thresholds for wheel grip/slip. It is useless for real life driving – that’s why big boys in rally have no electronic assistants!
Goals and experiments
- I wonder how to keep upgrades cheap with decent improvements over stock components
- at the moment, I am not comfortable to spend thousands on this car because I grew up from modifying family cars
- brake system improvements – no brakes, no survival.
- no Skoda alloy rims – I’m quite happy because they are heavy rubbish. Light racing alloys is the only thing I am sure to invest in. It is like you get extra 20BHP once engine has less resistance from heavy stock rims – I believe it is about 5kg on each wheel. G-forces are merciless.
Keep an eye on blog about recent upgrades.