Who ever said that diesel engines were stuffy and slow and meant only for tractors and heavy trucks? In recent years, this form of propulsion has really come into its own and it's amazing just how much performance you can extract from them, by just making a few simple adjustments or adding specific parts. How can you get the most out of your power plant?
Start by looking at your fuel injectors. If these are stock parts, consider swapping them out for special performance versions. Some people estimate that you can increase your engine's capability by up to 100 hp. Essentially, these upgrades are designed so that fuel is delivered through the nozzles at the right pressure and in the right direction. Make sure that you adjust your mapping, to compensate for this change.
Turbochargers can really make a difference. These products force additional air into the engine's combustion chamber, providing more oxygen and regulating the internal temperature. This, combined with upgraded fuel injectors will really make your engine sing.
Exhausting Your Options
While you've got so much action going on within the engine, don't forget to allow for the exhaust. When you upgrade its capacity, a larger volume of gases can be handled and this will balance out the extra tweaks that you have made on the input side. The bigger exhaust will also help keep the engine temperature in check. Your output system is equally as important, if you want to achieve true horsepower gains.
Fine Tuning with Additives
Finally, consider introducing certain additives to your diesel fuel. These can balance the "burn rate" when the fuel enters the ignition chamber for greater efficiency. Some additives act just like octane booster does in a petrol engine and may improve the drivability of the vehicle.
Some people start with the additives, just to see what type of performance gains they can get this way, before starting to modify the engine and exhaust systems. This is a good way to approach improvements if you are on a budget.
The Bottom Line
All in all, you could get a much smoother engine which runs quieter, is reasonable in terms of fuel consumption and gives you a lot more underneath your right foot.
What's for You?
Have a word with your parts supplier to see what additional work could be possible, in order to give you your freedom. You'd be surprised at just how perky your diesel could become.