When you buy a car, you’re probably thrilled with your new purchase, but after a while you may grow complacent of the vehicles performance, and feel the need for speed. For car enthusiasts or petrol heads, there are few things more exciting than unleashing the hidden potential that lies under that shiny bonnet. We spoke to the team at Compare.Parts and they’ve provided us with the five most common performance upgrades made to cars today. With an infinite host of options available to you, here are some of the best ways to improve your car’s performance.

1.  Motorsport Grade Wheels and Tyres

The wheels and tyres you choose for your car can have a significant impact on performance and handling. Unless you opt for an upgrades when buying a car, the vehicle will come with factory-standard wheels and OEM approved tyres. These will do the job perfectly for everyday driving, but if you’re keen to push the car to its limits on track, or have increased the power produced by your engine, it’s worthwhile considering investing in high-performance tyres and uprated alloy wheels.

Performance Alloys not only improve the aesthetics of a car; they also reduce the unspring rotational mass by being considerable lighter than cast alloy wheels. Reducing the rotational mass of wheels makes a considerable difference to power and performance and swapping for cast allows to forged lightweight alloys is an effective way to shed weight. When it comes to performance tyres, you can choose from brand or budget tyres, but this is often a classic case of getting what you pay for. For the best results, look for performance orientated tyres. Once you’ve got your wheels and tyres sorted, you should notice a real difference when accelerating, braking and cornering.

2.  Performance Exhaust Systems

Often, we hear supercars before we see them, and this is often due to a free flowing exhaust matched to the vehicles increase performance.

Exhausts upgrades typically fall into two categories:

  • Bolts on – These are made off the car, typically on a jig. They follow the paths of OEM exhausts, typically constructed with better materials, big diameter pipes and free flowing silencers. For vehicles which are upgraded often e.g. the BMW M series of cars, lots of Bolt on exhaust options are available.
  • Custom exhausts are hand built on the car. The existing manufacturer equipped exhaust is removed and a new one is made and fabricated on the car. Custom exhausts are made up of mandrels bends and straights or straight pipework is bent to follow the exhaust path on the belly of a car.

3.  ECU Remapping

The engine control unit or ECU, sometimes known as the engine management unit or EMU, is a computerised processor, which regulates the engine function.

When designing cars manufactures often detune cars in favor of longevity and reliability. Through engine remapping additional horsepower can be extracted. The exact amount is governed by other modifications such as the exhaust system, air intake.

4.  Advanced Suspension

If you’re looking for an effective way to improve handling, increase agility and responsiveness and upgrade performance, upgrading your suspension will achieve that.

Manufacturer equipped suspension on their vehicle is equipped to deal with the challenges of everyday driving. In the vast majority of cases, factory suspension systems cope well with normal driving conditions, but what if you want to take your car for a spin on the track then road suspension may not be able to handle the high

For those keen to improve their vehicles handling it’s beneficial to upgrade the suspension for improved handling and chassis dynamics. Adding springs or coil-overs can make an incredible difference, and those keen to race can also take advantage of advanced suspension that cater to this niche.

5.  Motorsport Brakes

A high-quality braking system is essential for safety, but they also play a critical role on track dealing with constant high speed braking. There are various ways to improve your braking system, including replacing the brake pads with better quality, high-performance components. Once you’ve swapped your brake pads for more upgraded versions, you will notice an immediate improvement when you apply pressure to the brake pedal, as well as a marked difference when slamming the brakes on unexpectedly in an emergency situation.

You may love your car as it is, but what if you could eke out an extra level of performance? Modifying and upgrading cars elevates the performance to the next level, and enables you to enjoy everything the car has to offer. From updating the exhaust system to swapping the wheels and tyres, there are several ways you can unlock your vehicle’s true potential. If you love to drive, or you’re passionate about modifying old or new vehicles, have you thought about making these changes?