Sunday, June 23, 2013

NISMO Stuff Racing Frontier--ON THE DYNO!!

Well now here is something unexpected.

As a team we always believe that the more information we have the better off we are.  So the opportunity to get hard data on the performance of our engine for a relatively low cost could not be passed up.

Kinetic Motor Works in Hampstead, NH, some 15 minutes away from our home, had an open house that included access to their dyno and a deal for $50 for three pulls on their dyno vs. the standard $125 for the hour or so it takes from setup to exit.

Kinetic specializes in Subarus, Hondas and Mitsus for the most part and most of cars on hand were certainly of the road/drag variety though they did have on Ford Focus shell that had been caged and is moving towards a stage rally life.

Following a 490 hp (at the wheels) Toyota Supra and a 300+ hp Audi S4 the NISMO Stuff Frontier was not of interest for its potential results on the fact it was likely one of the lowest hp vehicles ever to be measured on their machine--but at least its height made strapping it down a breeze!!

My biggest concern going into the test was that some 1200+ hard driven stage miles might have caused some sort of internal damage to the engine and reduced its already meager horsepower and left me facing large bill for an engine rebuild. Post dyno test my only concern surrounds how to eek some additional power out of the engine.

As a starting point, Nissan reports that the 2.5L 4 cyl should produce 152 hp at 5,200 rpm and 171 ft. lb. of torque at 4,400 rpm--at the crank.  Over the three pulls the engine produced very consistent results all within 1.5 hp of each other and averaged 132 hp at the wheels at 5100 rpm.  Assuming the "standard" (yes I know this is an inexact method but I'm not pulling the engine to put it on an engine dyno and 15% appears to be the typical rule of thumb) 15% loss of power for a manual between the crank and the wheels this puts the vehicle at 151.8 hp--pretty damn close its original numbers.

Torque is more of an estimate as the only torque readout is done at the same point as the peak hp.  That being said, peak torque appears to be about 148 ft. lb. at the wheel at about 4150 rpm.  With the 15% loss applied this brings the torque number back to 170.2 ft. lbs.  Its scary how using the 15% figure brings both the torque and hp #s right back to near EXACTLY where they were from the factory.

I am now satisfied that the engine is in solid condition and perhaps ready for a few performance upgrades as there has been NOTHING, outside of the removal of the muffler from the truck, done to improve overall speed and power.  Additionally, I now have a great baseline from a machine and shop I hope to use going forward and gauge what the changes we implement do for the overall performance of the vehicle.  Stay tuned (all puns intended here).

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