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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all, I’ve only just got into the mechanics. I’m wanting to add power to my Opel Corsa 1.2 2003. Just wanting advice on what I can do to add power and what parts I need to buy and any links would be very helpful where I can buy these parts. Looking to add hopefully an extra 30-50 hp
 

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Getting power out of a small atmosphere is a lot of money for little result, you can look for collectors and dblilas admission and nothing else, because if you talk about repros you will get € 400 for 5 or 10cv
 

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Yes, a naturally aspirated 1.2 doesn't give you a lot of options - certainly to get 30-50hp. Adding a turbo (the Clio 1.2 is 75hp, the 1.2TCe 100hp and the torque increase also helps oomph) would lead to all sorts of engine management headaches. Swapping in a larger engine makes me question if you really need to hold onto your car when a 1.8 C could be found for less cost and effort.

A cone filter, exhaust modifications, there are a handful of hp available. One thing I would suggest, and hear me out, is to make sure it's running cleanly. Even a bottle of Redex (£4 normally, often £2 on promotion at Tesco) does more than most with an older car that hasn't had much attention. Fresh sparks, clean air filter - make sure the obvious has been done first before considering costlier options. You won't make a rocket out of the 1.2 Twinport, but it can keep up with the traffic reasonably enough if in good shape.
 

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To gain that much power on a small N/A engine will be costly. If you stayed N/A even more so and it would become a bit of a handful as a road car as the engine idle rpm and top rpm would be a lot higher.
DBilas do a full turbo kit for this engine and you can send the ECU to them to be reprogrammed to suit it. This is still not cheap, for the off the shelf kit you would be looking at £3500+ for starters.
Due to the high costs and minimal gains most people opt for an engine swap to the Z18XE which can be had as a kit for around £500 and only take a day or 2 to do.

There has been other who have built home brew turbo kits for the Z12XE and seen total gain taking the engine up to 120-130bhp but you would really need to know what you are doing to do this at home and be able to weld to make exhaust parts.

Let us know what you decide to do and keep us posted. (y)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yes, a naturally aspirated 1.2 doesn't give you a lot of options - certainly to get 30-50hp. Adding a turbo (the Clio 1.2 is 75hp, the 1.2TCe 100hp and the torque increase also helps oomph) would lead to all sorts of engine management headaches. Swapping in a larger engine makes me question if you really need to hold onto your car when a 1.8 C could be found for less cost and effort.

A cone filter, exhaust modifications, there are a handful of hp available. One thing I would suggest, and hear me out, is to make sure it's running cleanly. Even a bottle of Redex (£4 normally, often £2 on promotion at Tesco) does more than most with an older car that hasn't had much attention. Fresh sparks, clean air filter - make sure the obvious has been done first before considering costlier options. You won't make a rocket out of the 1.2 Twinport, but it can keep up with the traffic reasonably enough if in good shape.
Thank you for the advice. I think ill
Just stick a high performance intake on the car and that’s about it. I know I already put a bottle or red ex in the car and I did feel the difference. It’s a relatively clean engine anyway with only 54,000 miles
 

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Discussion Starter #6
To gain that much power on a small N/A engine will be costly. If you stayed N/A even more so and it would become a bit of a handful as a road car as the engine idle rpm and top rpm would be a lot higher.
DBilas do a full turbo kit for this engine and you can send the ECU to them to be reprogrammed to suit it. This is still not cheap, for the off the shelf kit you would be looking at £3500+ for starters.
Due to the high costs and minimal gains most people opt for an engine swap to the Z18XE which can be had as a kit for around £500 and only take a day or 2 to do.

There has been other who have built home brew turbo kits for the Z12XE and seen total gain taking the engine up to 120-130bhp but you would really need to know what you are doing to do this at home and be able to weld to make exhaust parts.

Let us know what you decide to do and keep us posted. (y)
To gain that much power on a small N/A engine will be costly. If you stayed N/A even more so and it would become a bit of a handful as a road car as the engine idle rpm and top rpm would be a lot higher.
DBilas do a full turbo kit for this engine and you can send the ECU to them to be reprogrammed to suit it. This is still not cheap, for the off the shelf kit you would be looking at £3500+ for starters.
Due to the high costs and minimal gains most people opt for an engine swap to the Z18XE which can be had as a kit for around £500 and only take a day or 2 to do.

There has been other who have built home brew turbo kits for the Z12XE and seen total gain taking the engine up to 120-130bhp but you would really need to know what you are doing to do this at home and be able to weld to make exhaust parts.

Let us know what you decide to do and keep us posted. (y)
Thanks mate for the advice, I think I might just keep it stock or just put a high performance intake on the car. With only 54,000 miles on the clock it’s still running really strong anyway
 

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Making sure it has had a full service and a clean throttle body will be the best thing.
Adding a panel filter like K&N or Pipercross will help as will a good quality exhaust system such as a Piper cat back one.
I had those mods on a Z12XEP and they gave another 5bhp gain over rated factory power.
One thing I did find just by chance was in skimming the cylinder head by 0.5mm the low down torque was improved and it doesn't feel like it's going to stall as easy now when pulling away.
(cam shaft snapped and head needed skimming as a result, done another 46K miles since this and she runs great)
 

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If you really want to get power without risking reliability, change the engine, you cure yourself of expensive mechanical problems and you will win
 

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Tuning chips only really add extra to turbo engines, and even then I'm not keen. Many are just resistors that trick the ECU about the temperature and increase fuel supply which is a bit rubbish for £70, although some claim to do a bit more sophistication. If you're thinking of those ebay <£10 jobs that plug into the OBD2 port - no, definitely not. There is no way that any box plugged in there can order the ECU around in real time, so instead they just randomly flash LEDs to make you think it's doing something. There's a YT video where an example is taken apart and the PCB really is just a random on/off generator for the connected LEDs. Quite funny how some of them get "immediately noticed the improvement" ebay reviews which either proves (a) psychological placebo effect or (b) Google's Mandarin-English translator is getting better.
 

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And btw, although it's much more relevant to a diesel engine, the Redex and a throttle body clean will make a difference. 54k miles is great in many ways but, on a 19 year old car, suggests it may have spent a lot of time pootling short distances and turned off again. A good blat with some detergent additives will clear a lot of semi-burnt crud out and there may be a need for getting a good scrubbing brush out.
 

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To make an engine, a single engineer does not work, nor a computer, nor 10, nor 20, the whole plant works to develop a 0 engine, components guide it to where the car is sought and seek the maximum possible performance for minimum consumption If you change parameters, change reliability, you risk increasing the efforts of connecting rods, pistons, cylinder head ... everything An atmospheric engine works with little air, that is why it does not suffer as much variation as a turbo diesel, which needs a lot of air pressure, that is why diesels emit more black smoke, due to lack of air, than a gasoline, which uses less or nothing because doesn't need much air With which, if you can fit X in the conbustion chamber, you cannot put Y, because you break the stoichiometric relationship so that it works well, so with a repro you only win 5 horses up or down The only thing you can do is help the piston to suck the air into the chamber more easily, with intake manifold, wide and short intake, high flow filters ... and help it to expel the gases, exhaust line, collectors, catalyst high flow ... everything else, put more gasoline, repro, chips, or high octane gasoline if the manufacturer does not recommend it, is silly. That is why it is more recommended to install another motor according to what has been studied A f1 engine, without going any further, gives so much power because they are not made to last, if it breaks after two hours to the trash, and if it lasts three then three A car has to make sure that you have reliability under any use, that's why you have 75 and not 130, because 130 would not reach 10 years or 5 do not do experiments, neither you nor a reprogrammer, put collectors and exhaust line, but you will not get to half a second or one in a circuit.
 

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Actually, Jewels has reminded me of something not too expensive, not very skills-intensive and not going to affect your reliability. The standard air intake on the C is quite restrictive. Even if you use a panel filter as z22se suggests, there are a couple of other things that will add to it. One is that, inside the air filter holder, it continues (inexplicably to my mind) to a cylindrical tube shape. When I am in dusty, sandy Malaga, most of the airborne crud clogs up a pretty small circle of the filter and the rest looks fresh. If you look at Rust Locker's video, from around 2:40, you'll see what I mean
So, if you continue, you can very simply take off the top half and, with a Dremel, get rid of the pipery altogether if you like. I'm not sure if it adds >0.1hp but I also can't see why the intake carries on being so restrictive in the box where the actual filter is, so nothing much risked, IMO. Also, if you search this forum a bit, some people used to get Vectra C front intakes mated to an Astra G (IIRC) junction that joined it up to the C airbox. The Vectra intake sucks in more air.

Without doing anything else, I doubt if you'd see any big gain. I assume that the standard Corsa setup is adequate for the engines in there but free flow of air in and exhaust out gets a bottleneck or two out of the way and worth at least looking up.
 

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This way is to channel the air at maximum power, if you remove it you will obviously have more flow but more air turbulence, in mechanical theory you will get half NM or something else without it but in power or high flow the turbulences will slow down the channel of air causing you to lose nobody is so stupid to put something in the car and make it work worse, things are studied by something, like bmw and its double collector
 

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As OZ says you can remove the tubes from the airbox base and lid. They mainly increase induction noise once removed partly due to turbulence part down to making inlet tracked shorter. Questionable if you get any power gain on such a small engine.
If you follow the air feed back from the airbox to the front of the car on the smaller models it is behind the top of the bumper, larger engine'd Corsa's have a hole in the bumper here so make a hole in your bumper. Its covered by the bonnet when its shut any way but it will allow more cold air in. The ECU will adjust the fueling to suit, gains will be tiny but every little helps.
DBilas also do a full N/A upgrade kit which is claimed to gain 30bhp on a stock engine. It costs near on £3000 for all you need though.
 

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In astra G zafira At the intake it goes to the hood grill without any closure, years ago I learned of a 1.2 that opened in the defense and little noticed, it began to realize that the filter got more dirty and ended up covering the defense of Again, what I did was open the part of the tube from below, at low or city levels it can suck heat from the radiator, but on the road or highway when taking air from the grill it already sucks what enters and does not have direct intake with the dirt
 

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Andyhst8, my sad addiction for scouring all Corsa bits on ebay turned up this

I don't know if it appeals, if it's priced reasonably and if it'll give you bang for buck (z22se will have a better placed opinion than mine) but I do flag up relevant stuff to threads unless I get a "cease and desist" notice.
 

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Those manifolds are around £809 new and come with a software/remap if you send ECU to DBilas for it. power gains are a bit optimistic, 5-10BHP gain is more like it after the remap. with their cams you might see the gains they claim?
I had 1 of their manifolds on the Z22SE engine and it was 6bhp less than the stock manifold after a custom remap by Courtenay Sport on the rollers. The claimed DBilas software from the then UK dealer gave less power than the stock GM software and made the car hard to drive below 3000rpm.
engine in dbilas inlet.jpg
 

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I found the most cost effective item to upgrade the performance of a 1.4 litre or below is a downhill run, ideally on the exit of a roundabout as this seems to increase propulsion. Almost feels like it has guts.

Of all the cars I ever drove, the most enjoyable was a Corsa C SRI with the 1.8 litre engine.
Not sure if it was just the engine that made it so much fun but it did feel considerably lower to the ground than the standard.
It felt like I was driving a go-kart. I miss that car.

So if there is as others suggest a conversion kit for a 1.8 litre as cheap as what is mentioned, I would do that no questions asked.
 

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Those manifolds are around £80 new and come with a software/remap if you send ECU to DBilas for it. I had 1 of their manifolds on the Z22SE engine and it was 6bhp less than the stock manifold after a custom remap by Courtenay Sport on the rollers. The claimed DBilas software from the then UK dealer gave less power than the stock GM software and made the car hard to drive below 3000rpm.
So someone on ebay is selling a lemon, without even the remap, for 2.5x the new price? I'm shocked - I never knew that happened :LOL:

Sorry to waste time - it's not my area. Coincidentally, (I mentioned the Renault 1.2 TCe early on) a 1.2TCe engine with turbo is ending in a few hours with no interest. If I had any ability at all, I'd consider taking it down to Malaga and swapping it in for my Modus 1.4. Better economy, more power and torque (the 1.4 power line is just a steep gradient all the way to the redline). I hired a Megane with that engine for a month and it's quite a transformation from the N/A 1.2
 
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