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Custom Turbo Application

  1. Mar 7, 2009 #1
    The 2003 Cadillac Deville is equipped with a DOHC 4.6 litre V8 engine rated at 275 horsepower. There is a lack of aftermarket support for the Northstar engine, so there are very few options i the way of performance improvements. I am of the understanding that any car can be turbocharged and, although I understand the basic principles of turbocharging, I have not worked on a custom turbo application. My questions are:

    1. Would a custom turbocharged or remote turbocharged setup be possible with this car?
    2. If so, how much would this project cost?
    3. Where can I learn the instructions to make a custom turbocharged installation (I have experience with automotive mechanics)?

    Thank you.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 8, 2009 #2

    Ranger Mike

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    can appreciate your wanting to juice up the Cad..but it is not as cut and dried as it used to be..Engineers spent huge dollars and mucho time developing the engine,by changing any one component of the engine will throw everything else into a state of unbalance and confusion.

    Yes, you can have a custom installed bolt on a turbo..may even look semi factory..but..ride, drive line noise, gas mileage and total driveability will suffer..all turbos have a degree of lag time from pedal down to take off..I suggest you check out http://www.performancechipsdirect.com/Cadillac/ for a cheap computer chip..add 50 HP and dramatic performance...if still not satisfied..go to Jegs.com and get a nitrous set up..you can dump a nitrous charge to the intake and really kick up the power..for a brief time..depends on size bottle
    both can be easily removed and engine returned to stock if you want to sell the car..a butchered up turbo installation will always look cobbled up and in my opinion ..not the way to go..
    but your call

    or sell the CAD and buy an Hemi!!
  4. Mar 9, 2009 #3
    Yes, it would be possible. Your biggest problem would be tuning the computer to keep the A/F ratio correct. Maybe build a megasquirt EFI system for it? Be prepared to spend probably $2k or so to do it all right.
  5. Mar 9, 2009 #4
    It all depends on how much you want to spend and how mechanically savvy you are. It also depends on the application. How much extra power do you want, do you want this at the top end, etc?

    Adding a turbo to a na car is not trivial in the slightest, you have problems with cooling, compression ratio, possibly uprating components etc and then you have the delightful task of plumbing the thing in.

    As opposed to buying a chip as ranger mike suggested go for a custom ecu package (such as megasquirt). It has far more flexibility and is ultimately a more useful tool, but you have to build and wire it in yourself.
  6. Mar 9, 2009 #5
    I'm curious to know how a custom ecu package would work to improve horsepower and how much gain in power I could see. I'm open to this idea if it provides good gains and saves money. The Cadillac is my favourite car; I wouldn't want to change to a Hemi chrysler so any improvement is good. :)

    I would be satisfied with 350 horsepower, top end or low end it makes no difference. 400 would be nice. I've heard that nobody has "cracked" the Northstar PCM therefore chip tuning is not done. Could a custom ecu package be made?
  7. Mar 10, 2009 #6
    A custom ECU allows you to to fully control the fuelling and spark timing (and other assorted goodies) and can tune it for max brake torque. This is basically what an off the shelf chip does (most are ******** and wont do a damn thing though), but they usually piggyback on the existing ecu.

    You are unlikely to see a massive increase in power with an engine map alone (10% maybe), as its a fairly modern car it's likely to be tuned coming from the factory.

    The advantage of a programmable ecu is that if you did go down the turbo route you can simply remap it and drive away.
  8. Mar 16, 2009 #7
    you could either go supercharger or turbo either one will get you there with ease, but the amount of work(if your taking one on yourself) can be a bit daunting, mainly lots of reading and Money(emphasis on money). and if you decided to let someone else do the dirty work add another few grand. a good site to google is homemadeturbo they've got sucess stories and other people in the same exact boat as you.
    i can relate as i have plans for more than double my current power production but that also entails a rebuild from the ground up to handle the tremendous stresses it will have to handle.
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