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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 12:55 am 
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Car Model: 2009 9-5 Aero 260 HOT
Looks like I'll be getting a 2008 9-5 Aero in a week or so. Once I've had it serviced and done a few things, I'll be taking it to see Karl for a stage one remap.

I'm after the opinions of people who have already done this and what I'd like to know is - is it worth spending and extra £400+ for a sports exhaust and a fuel pressure reg to go straight to stage 3 and get an extra 25-30bhp (305bhp and 440nm) on top of a straight stage one mod (275bhp and 420nm)? Is the difference considerably noticeable and worth the extra outlay?

Car is a petrol auto with 148k on clock BTW.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 10:20 am 
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A sports exhaust isn't needed for Stg3. The OE exhaust can flow well enough for at least 350bhp which is past that.

Starting at the cheap end.
You will need either a new fuel pressure regulator OR bigger injectors. The standard injectors are close to their maximum at Stg3 and the 3.5 regulator helps out. If you get bigger injectors then the original regulator is fine. Karl will map accordingly.

A fatter 3" down-pipe is highly recommended to help the gasses escape and cool before they hit the rest of the exhaust. I have a "sports" 200 CEL cat in mine which is good enough for MOT time. The rest of the exhaust is fine for Stg3. Though I have gone for something with a bit more burble myself it wasn't needed.

A better intercooler is then becoming a Good Idea. But that can be down to how often you prod the loud pedal with gusto in Spain in the middle of summer or if you drive Miss Daisy in northern Sweden. There are drop-in solutions and cheaper DIY approaches to suit most piggy-banks. I'd recommend the down-pipe before an intercooler if budget is an issue.

For the outlay for your Stg1 from Karl I would get that done first and see how that suits you. You can then be feeding the piggy-bank for some injectors, a down-pipe, an intercooler and another visit to Karl. Is it worth it? Spending what I did on a 2000 makes no economic sense, but it's a hoot and a half. However, it's a lot of outlay to go straight there and find it's not you want in a daily drive.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 10:26 am 
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DeeDub8 wrote:
A sports exhaust isn't needed for Stg3. The OE exhaust can flow well enough for at least 350bhp which is past that.

Starting at the cheap end.
You will need either a new fuel pressure regulator OR bigger injectors. The standard injectors are close to their maximum at Stg3 and the 3.5 regulator helps out. If you get bigger injectors then the original regulator is fine. Karl will map accordingly.

A fatter 3" down-pipe is highly recommended to help the gasses escape and cool before they hit the rest of the exhaust. I have a "sports" 200 CEL cat in mine which is good enough for MOT time. The rest of the exhaust is fine for Stg3. Though I have gone for something with a bit more burble myself it wasn't needed.

A better intercooler is then becoming a Good Idea. But that can be down to how often you prod the loud pedal with gusto in Spain in the middle of summer or if you drive Miss Daisy in northern Sweden. There are drop-in solutions and cheaper DIY approaches to suit most piggy-banks. I'd recommend the down-pipe before an intercooler if budget is an issue.

For the outlay for your Stg1 from Karl I would get that done first and see how that suits you. You can then be feeding the piggy-bank for some injectors, a down-pipe, an intercooler and another visit to Karl. Is it worth it? Spending what I did on a 2000 makes no economic sense, but it's a hoot and a half. However, it's a lot of outlay to go straight there and find it's not you want in a daily drive.


Pretty much spot on I'd say. Having had both I'd have to say no. Your Intercooler will be on borrowed time so factor that in with £500/550 for 3"Dp and 3.5bar fpr and you're looking at not much change from 1k. I did enjoy stage 3 and I did it relatively cheap having a mate make the downpipe for me.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 12:55 pm 
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DeeDub8 wrote:
A sports exhaust isn't needed for Stg3. The OE exhaust can flow well enough for at least 350bhp which is past that.


A 3" downpipe is most definitely needed for stage 3. It's not there to help cool the exhaust gas to stop it being too hot for the rest of the system......... its there to help keep the EGT's down which stops the turbine melting and detonation in the cylinders (which will eat pistons, rods and valves in short order).


Quote:
starting at the cheap end.
You will need either a new fuel pressure regulator OR bigger injectors. The standard injectors are close to their maximum at Stg3 and the 3.5 regulator helps out. If you get bigger injectors then the original regulator is fine. Karl will map accordingly.

I have a "sports" 200 CEL cat in mine which is good enough for MOT time. The rest of the exhaust is fine for Stg3. Though I have gone for something with a bit more burble myself it wasn't needed.

A better intercooler is then becoming a Good Idea. But that can be down to how often you prod the loud pedal with gusto in Spain in the middle of summer or if you drive Miss Daisy in northern Sweden. There are drop-in solutions and cheaper DIY approaches to suit most piggy-banks. I'd recommend the down-pipe before an intercooler if budget is an issue.

For the outlay for your Stg1 from Karl I would get that done first and see how that suits you. You can then be feeding the piggy-bank for some injectors, a down-pipe, an intercooler and another visit to Karl. Is it worth it? Spending what I did on a 2000 makes no economic sense, but it's a hoot and a half. However, it's a lot of outlay to go straight there and find it's not you want in a daily drive.


The rest is fine and sound advice.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 2:22 pm 
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McVities wrote:
DeeDub8 wrote:
A sports exhaust isn't needed for Stg3. The OE exhaust can flow well enough for at least 350bhp which is past that.


A 3" downpipe is most definitely needed for stage 3. It's not there to help cool the exhaust gas to stop it being too hot for the rest of the system......... its there to help keep the EGT's down which stops the turbine melting and detonation in the cylinders (which will eat pistons, rods and valves in short order).


Quote:
starting at the cheap end.
You will need either a new fuel pressure regulator OR bigger injectors. The standard injectors are close to their maximum at Stg3 and the 3.5 regulator helps out. If you get bigger injectors then the original regulator is fine. Karl will map accordingly.

I have a "sports" 200 CEL cat in mine which is good enough for MOT time. The rest of the exhaust is fine for Stg3. Though I have gone for something with a bit more burble myself it wasn't needed.

A better intercooler is then becoming a Good Idea. But that can be down to how often you prod the loud pedal with gusto in Spain in the middle of summer or if you drive Miss Daisy in northern Sweden. There are drop-in solutions and cheaper DIY approaches to suit most piggy-banks. I'd recommend the down-pipe before an intercooler if budget is an issue.

For the outlay for your Stg1 from Karl I would get that done first and see how that suits you. You can then be feeding the piggy-bank for some injectors, a down-pipe, an intercooler and another visit to Karl. Is it worth it? Spending what I did on a 2000 makes no economic sense, but it's a hoot and a half. However, it's a lot of outlay to go straight there and find it's not you want in a daily drive.


The rest is fine and sound advice.

Thanks for the correction about the downpipe McVities. I bought mine well before and put it (someone else spannered) before I put the Stg1 ECU back on. There's an improvement with it even with Stg1. I hadn't realised the importance of EGT up to Stg3. Possibly because it's not mentioned so much and it's taken as read you'd get a downpipe first. My mental Book Of Stuff has been updated.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:19 pm 
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It's the reason a 3" DP is needed for stage 3 (which is really stage 2 but several well-known noughties tuning firms tried to insert a cat-back on a stage 1 map as an interim step, completely unnecessary but now we are stuck with the terminology).

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:51 pm 
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Having upgraded to stage 3 on my first 9-5 Aero, those bits have been transferred across to the subsequent ones. Personally I'd say stage 3 is definitely worth doing, the increased in throttle response (probably mostly due to the 3" downpipe) makes the power come in much quicker :-)

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:33 pm 
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If you know the physics, a bigger downpipe makes bugger all difference to throttle response or even lag......... however the remap which alters the electronic throttle response to pedal movement will make it seem like there is a huge improvement.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:48 pm 
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I’m guessing it’s more aggressive on the stage 3 map, made possible by the lower EGT values due to the bigger downpipe ... ?

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:32 pm 
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Ignition timing is more aggressive I believe, as you suggest due to the lower EGT's........ however, advancing the ignition timing will reduce EGT by itself as more combustion occurs within the cylinder.

I don't think the proportion of pedal movement vs throttle movement is particularly limited by EGT's.
Hopefully at this point Karl might chip in.........

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 8:55 pm 
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Location: North of Aberdeen
Car Model: 9-5 aero sportwagon
I'd think twice about stage 3 if you're after a daily commuter. There's a few posts about overboost with the stage 3 and there's no single solution that I've come across. My 56 Aero is now on 150k miles and I have an ever increasing list of issues, some of which I've sorted previously in the 3 years since I bought the car. I use the car daily and have deliberately stuck with the stage 1 as I'm already spending much of my free time just keeping the car on the road - last thing I need to introduce is another source of problems!

Things I'm revisiting are, reverse sensors, bottom ball joints, drop links, rocker cover gasket, xenon levelling sensor, handbrake cable.

New problems - clutch (stg 1 didn't help) suspension, air con leak (confirmed)

And I sorted a mountain of faults when I bought the car, plus replaced know issues before failure.

I do really like and enjoy the car but after a lifetime of driving quick cars I've never owned one this high maintenance!

The above list is a good £1,200, and after £400 of welding for the last MOT I can't decide whether to cut my losses and move on as I need a daily driver that I'm not spending my free time just keeping it on the road. Only saving grace is it's a manual and low road tax.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 11:25 pm 
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Car Model: 2009 9-5 Aero 260 HOT
Thanks for all the replies and discussion, which have been really useful.

I think that I'm probably best doing the S1 for now and seeing how that goes first. If it had been just the 3" downpipe and cat, I might have been tempted but then there's the matter of a decent IC at another £4-500 and the costs are suddenly racking up when It needs some bread and butter stuff doing first. A new spring - make that a pair then or why not just do all 4 corners and add a set of B4's while it's up on the ramp? Two brake discs - why not replace them all while it's up on the ramp etc.... etc. Then there's a service and auto-box flush..

At least I've ring-fenced the stage 1 spend, so that 90 quid is going nowhere other than Karl's pocket. :lol:


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 11:27 pm 
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Car Model: 9-5 Edna Noob Stage 3
Any level of tune will highlight underlying problems. Admittedly stage 3 more so, but stage 1 or 3 you should be aware that other issues may come up.
The way I see it is that the tune is just highlighting something that was already boogered and would have needed sorting eventually anyway..

scooby dhu wrote:
I'd think twice about stage 3 if you're after a daily commuter. There's a few posts about overboost with the stage 3 and there's no single solution that I've come across. My 56 Aero is now on 150k miles and I have an ever increasing list of issues, some of which I've sorted previously in the 3 years since I bought the car. I use the car daily and have deliberately stuck with the stage 1 as I'm already spending much of my free time just keeping the car on the road - last thing I need to introduce is another source of problems!

Things I'm revisiting are, reverse sensors, bottom ball joints, drop links, rocker cover gasket, xenon levelling sensor, handbrake cable.

New problems - clutch (stg 1 didn't help) suspension, air con leak (confirmed)

And I sorted a mountain of faults when I bought the car, plus replaced know issues before failure.

I do really like and enjoy the car but after a lifetime of driving quick cars I've never owned one this high maintenance!

The above list is a good £1,200, and after £400 of welding for the last MOT I can't decide whether to cut my losses and move on as I need a daily driver that I'm not spending my free time just keeping it on the road. Only saving grace is it's a manual and low road tax.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:39 am 
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Even on stage 1 the intercooler in a 9-5 is on borrowed time, i would start looking for one you can pick up cheap as a spare.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:27 am 
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My car went down a different route. I put in a 3" downpipe with a 200CEL cat first - before remapping or anything else - and the difference was astounding. It is true that a remap makes a difference to throttle response, but well before I did that, the downpipe made a huge difference to the flexibility of the engine. When the Stage 3 map was added, well, that made the car something completely different.

If you use the car as a daily driver St1 tune keeps fuel consumption down. In St 3 one loses about 3-4mpg. Ignore what people say about 'if you don't use the power, it wont use the fuel' - a St 3 map is essentially richer and has higher fuel demands, St 1 too - but it is almost indistinguishable from the normal level of fuel consumption.

Good luck.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:44 am 
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jopo001 wrote:
Even on stage 1 the intercooler in a 9-5 is on borrowed time, i would start looking for one you can pick up cheap as a spare.


Are Nissens IC's any good as a cheaper alternative? Can be had for about 150ish on ebay.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 12:28 pm 
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GoodOldBakes wrote:
jopo001 wrote:
Even on stage 1 the intercooler in a 9-5 is on borrowed time, i would start looking for one you can pick up cheap as a spare.


Are Nissens IC's any good as a cheaper alternative? Can be had for about 150ish on ebay.

I pretty sure you then need to get the pipework to fit it as a front mounted jobbie. Unless the dimensions and connections allow it to be dropped in where the original lived. The D088 was a straight replacement so I can offer any insight as to the work that may be involved.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:16 pm 
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Nissens is most likely a replacement to OE standard, as such it will still probably end up ballooning under the increased boost pressure ... whereas the Do88 unit is sold aluminium (and very heavy compared to a standard item!)

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:19 pm 
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GoodOldBakes wrote:
jopo001 wrote:
Even on stage 1 the intercooler in a 9-5 is on borrowed time, i would start looking for one you can pick up cheap as a spare.


Are Nissens IC's any good as a cheaper alternative? Can be had for about 150ish on ebay.


Nissens make OEM replacements, but they still have plastic end tanks. Will last longer than the original but I would hold out for a Do88 as they are much stronger - the air passages won't balloon (unlike any OEM one).

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:36 pm 
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scooby dhu wrote:
I'd think twice about stage 3 if you're after a daily commuter. There's a few posts about overboost with the stage 3 and there's no single solution that I've come across. My 56 Aero is now on 150k miles and I have an ever increasing list of issues, some of which I've sorted previously in the 3 years since I bought the car. I use the car daily and have deliberately stuck with the stage 1 as I'm already spending much of my free time just keeping the car on the road - last thing I need to introduce is another source of problems!

I upgraded Fb2 to stage 3 at about 70K miles, and kept it to about 142K by which time it was at stage 4 and the b235R was pretty much maxed out. I have a very different experience and would highly recommend stage 3 as the ideal road spec B235. Beyond that you're into potential challenges, but only when things aren't 100% right in the first place.

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