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Old 30th November 2007, 17:53   #31
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I will stay within the topic itself and stay away from the turners part of it:

The words of one old man said that we are always in a race to be faster/better and we take our own routes to achieve the same. Wouldnt you love it if your car could go faster than a ferrari at 1/100 of the price. Yes you would but it has to be RELIABLE.(now who can produce more power without adding stress to a given engine, hence how can a modded car be reliable) Typical engines are designed to go till about 120% of their production figures (at least in India) and not beyond and manufacturing process being suspect you will be forced to accept this wether you like it or not. I do personally know owning a modded car requires way more attention to detail if you want it for a daily drive and no you cant push it day in a day out (so what is the use of owning a modded car).

Here in India as elsewhere in the world tuning has primarily been for the posers (read non racers) and key tuning worldwide has been focussed on commercialised products that could be bolted on, and most major tuning is driven by sponsored cars on street and on track.

Not everywhere does one get to mod cars like they typically would and know how to take care of modded rides like how an auto / company dealer would take care of a stock car. Here it has always been more difficult to do the same as one is constantly tied up for sourcing parts that are not available or lack of experience in maintaining a modded machine. Which turns out to be the biggest problem when you own a modded ride.

So if you sit down and think you can build a rocket but remember it was designed for a 1 way trip but if you have build a shuttle you need to think of a million more failure areas so as a statistical person a stock powerful car with basic addons which are known not to go wrong would be the best bet.

As for tuners always remember the tuner can only be as good as you are with your car and not more. Hence be smart detune after each race and let the engine survive till when the power is needed again until then milage jindabad.
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Old 30th November 2007, 19:04   #32
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[Quote/]I do personally know owning a modded car requires way more attention to detail if you want it for a daily drive and no you cant push it day in a day out (so what is the use of owning a modded car).[/quote]

One guy I know of has a modded car that is pushed to its limits day in and out. As in at the redline each time. So much that its expected to blow itself up anytime. But the ride till date remains a daily driver and has been clocking close to 1500kms a week without missing a beat. Only regular oil services & brake pad replacements so far.

I guess in the end it all depends on your tuner. Lucky bloke got a good tuner. Or rather a very sensible tuner who perfectly understands what the bloke wants and what the car will be put through.

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Old 30th November 2007, 19:22   #33
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Psycho, thanks for your response. I would like to give you the example of my MX-5. A friend of mine wanted more power from his but did not want to pay anyone for it. He rigged up a turbocharger set up himself and when finished and tuned properly this 116hp car, that delivered about 90hp at the rear wheels, was putting out 220hp at the wheels or about 285 at the crankshaft.

But the turbo system was unreliable and kept blowing seals, plumbing would come loose, and the ECU tuning was amateurish so the car would not run properly most of the time.

So if amateurishly done, its a bad situation.

But then you also have an MX-5 tuner called Flying Miata that is in the business of modifying this car. THeir max version puts the 1.6L MX-5 at 300hp (crankshaft) and it is dead solid reliable, street drivability is unaffected, it runs on premium gas, and the fuel economy is decent unless you use the power all the time. And this is without touching the internals of the engine. IF you choose to touch the internals, they will build an engine with forged low compression pistons, forged piston rods, reinforced head bolts, strengthened crankshaft elements. THen the boost can be turned up from 12 psi of the standard engine version to 15, 18, or over 20psi, and the car's put out an easy 400hp. from a simplistic 1980s engine design.

How did they do this. By doing a good thorough engineering job, and lots and lots and lots testing including on the racing circuit. They had or developed expertise in engines, forced induction, heat transfer, and ECU programming.

Today's cars in India, many of them, have engines far more advanced than the old MX-5 lump. They have much more advanced metallurgy, superior head designs, advanced electronics controls, and there is no reason that a skilled tuner could not get these engines to be reliable while producing 50% to 150% more power than stock, without touching the internals.

Of course all this R&D work and testing and use of quality components costs money. For the MX5, you can get low pressure Turbos that boost power by about 30% for very cheap, intermediate turbo and supercharger set ups, and the uber powerful systems I mentioned above. costs range from Rs70,000 to Rs 2.2lacs, not counting labor. at the low end of that that you get a basic small 6psi turbo, no intercooler and a piggback ECU. at the high end you get a bigger 12psi turbo , intercooler, advanced replacement custom ECU, high flow injectors, hi flow fuel pump, intake exhaust, etc. All of this is for engines without any internal modifications. Of course for a car with this 12psi turbo, you also need to invest in clutch upgrades, brake upgrades, and suspension upgrades, so that drives up the price by another lac or so.

It seems that tuning in india is limited to race cars that don't have to last long or be trouble free for long, and the attitude in India is that modification is not suitable for road use.

But this is not true. the 120% rule is not true if the people doing the tuning has the expertise and they put in the time to do testing and ensure reliability.
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Old 30th November 2007, 20:49   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkanitkar View Post
Fuel Consumption, my friend.
In a country like India, where even a Lambo owner is asked what average does he get from the car, the main factor remains to be the FE of a car. This, given to a general perception that 'modify kiya hai toh average kam dega'.
yes, I can just imagine that, given the disastrous price of fuel compared to Indian incomes.

I remember the first time I saw a 911 was at 2nd Indian Auto Expo (then at the pragati maidan, don't know if its still held there). Porsche had brought a 964 generation 911 Carrera 2 and a 968 and I charmed the desi guard to let me sit in them. I met Adil Jaldarukhanawala, the editor of Car and Bike International, then the hottest car magazine in India, and he behaved like an arrogant jerk when I introduced myself and held out my hand to shake.

Anyway, I hung around the porsche stand for a bit and this short fat balding middle aged guy came and approached the German who was Porsche's representative.

short fat bald middle aged man: "waaat is thee speshal feeechur av this carrrr?"

stiff assed German: It hass a two hundredd aiiteee tooooooo hosspawr flet sssixxx enjn, it isss caipaibl off zero to one hundredd in fife secundss, itt ken brrreak ffrum one hundredd in.....

short fat bald middle aged Indian (interupting): waaat this carrrr neeed far Indeeean cundishians is a sixtee harspawar deejal ingun!


You should have seen the German's face, not to speak of my surprise. a Porsche 911 with a 60hp diesel engine?!

But from that guy's perspective, it must have made perfect sense. The Indian perspective on vehicles is very different from the world of fast cars.

But I still feel that as India is getting more connected with the global economy, as modern cars are spreading, and Indians have more money to spend, the interest in modifying cars has to grow. It may be too early now, but it has to happen I believe.

Even in the US, 99.999% of the cars are not modified. But even so, enough are to create a huge industry of tuners. If Indian car enthusiasts aren't demanding it yet, I feel its because they haven't yet gotten a chance to visualize the possiblities.
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Old 30th November 2007, 21:46   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harbir View Post
But this is not true. the 120% rule is not true if the people doing the tuning has the expertise and they put in the time to do testing and ensure reliability.
Wide Band Tuning Kit with Data Logging: $799
ECU Scanning Tools: $200
Dyno: at least $20,000
Facilities: $ 15,000
Machining Equipment: $ 20,000
Parts Stocking: $ 15,000
etc...

So costs are sky high anyway to do it scientifically / equally to what we see out of India.

Expertise : ? number of engines blown in each make to test true limits
Time: each engine 1 person year * ? number of engines
(above 2 points you mean max power per engine type)

What about the additional add ons like brakes, suspension, meters, electronics, rims rubber etc,etc,etc...

PS:

Reliability: Who defines this Tuner / Owner / Driver / Public

Please read at any garage bills that say: No gaurantees once the car leaves the garage, And I know this to be true mostly worldwide.


I do hope you realise as to what I am getting at. At the end of the whole list came the word reliability (which is an ambiguos term as compared to BHP / Torque / 1/4 mile timeslip etc...)

PS: Why blow money (in India) when you dont get anything back other than satisfaction. There is no major prize money if you compete, no sponsors, little or no events (I mean official drags / auto crosses / hill climbs, as these are the only places you can take a non roll caged car, the only benefit being that there are trackdays that happen now)


Another point: I find driving a 150 bhp/ton car itself gets tough through every day traffic and you cant open it up all the time so why even bother for more on the streets out here.

Last edited by Psycho : 30th November 2007 at 21:49.
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Old 30th November 2007, 22:14   #36
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Psycho, its not cheap. will need serious investment, no guarantee of returns. So cost, I agree, nobody wants to put their money on the line to rest a very uncertain, probably non existent market.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Psycho View Post
PS: Why blow money (in India) when you dont get anything back other than satisfaction.
You think most people in Japan, US, Canada, Europe, Australia who tune their cars do it for anything except satisfaction? In fact, most tuned cars do not enter any competitions except autocrossing or runs at the drag strip for which there is no reward except the satisfaction and time slip that shows what time you ran.

I am just not convinced that if given the opportunity, at least some Indian enthusiasts would not be happy to hop up their street driven cars. If people can appreciate the pleasure of a 120hp engine over a 75hp engine, they will appreciate how their 75hp car drives when upped to 120hp
Quote:
Another point: I find driving a 150 bhp/ton car itself gets tough through every day traffic and you cant open it up all the time so why even bother for more on the streets out here.
I don't know about where you live but I am from north India and when there, I can always use a lot more power than I have expereinced in any car I've driven in India. Mostly for two reasons.

1. overtaking acceleration. traffic coming, have a 5 second window, can I pull out, accelerate pas the bus or two trucks and get back before the oncoming bus hits me? The more power the merrier.

2. I am doing 120-160km/h but every few seconds, I am having to brake for obstacles. Its a constant, accelerate, brake, accelerate brake thing. Everytime i gain speed, I have to lose it. I don't want to go faster than 120 -160 for the sake of safety, but if I could get up to that speed more quickly, it would be fantastic.

No, you can't go more than 40-60km/h in most city situations. Perhaps the days are gone when in Delhi you could head out at 3am to wide empty roads and blast around at ultra high speeds. But atleast I can put power to a lot of good use in India. Driving in the mountains, added power would be SO valuable for passing slow vehicles.

I get that most people can't be bothered with tons more power. But I maintained that many would be very glad to have it.
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Old 30th November 2007, 22:17   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkanitkar View Post
Now, due to the hype it generates, its common to mod a ride to certain extent ( Intake kits/ FFEs )

Summed up : Modding a ride : Fashion to some, Passion to some !
Very well said!!! Down here even a bloke next door who doesn't know what are the 4 strokes of a ICE proudly declares that he has a "header,filter" installed in his ride. On asking if he has seen any results, reply is "car is moving man". On asking what rpms are the gains most evident in, the reply is "Dunno all that". So you can judge what an average modder's tuning knowledge is limited to.
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Old 30th November 2007, 23:43   #38
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@Psycho - that sums up the issue very well !!

Quote:
yes, I can just imagine that, given the disastrous price of fuel compared to Indian incomes.
Actually, its the mentality that we have here. Fuel is not yet looked at as a commodity. Some even make it sound like an extravagance.

Quote:
waaat this carrrr neeed far Indeeean cundishians is a sixtee harspawar deejal ingun!
LOLz .. what else ?


Quote:
The Indian perspective on vehicles is very different from the world of fast cars.
It might sound off topic but, I feel it is somewhat related to the industrialization progress in US of A and European countries. We had a limited number of mechanical/ automotive industry in India almost till the late 70s. And to some extent, this forms the base towards further experimentation ( read : engine tuning/modification ) and generation of interest in this field.

Quote:
Originally Posted by doomsday View Post
4 strokes of a ICE
hehehe.. that was pretty confusing for me at first..

Quote:
Originally Posted by doomsday View Post
"car is moving man"
even if at a snails pace..
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Old 1st December 2007, 00:12   #39
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Personally, I'd love to own a hardcore modified ride thats my pride and others' envy. That is if I was very rich, had other cars as my daily drive with the one car set aside as the weekend modded ride, and not having to worry about things like resale value, mileage and reliability.
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Old 1st December 2007, 02:07   #40
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India is starving for some serious tuning..

There is a niche market (not really a niche, considering the number of people in the country with a massive appetite for just about everything related to the subject or performance on multiple levels..ranging from just increasing FE to actually giving "spidermans" latest acquisition a run for his money)

The new genre of so called "tuners" is well aware of this market and have become the "go to" people in the country and have been making their name at it...Good and bad...

The most important aspect of tuning in India is sourcing parts...the funding for these parts is not necessarily the problem...there are plenty customers in the metros who don't mind sheeling out mad money to save the trouble of importng stuff for multiple reasons..(which i am sure that the people in the business of tuning are well aware of and have already started milking the cow...no offense to anyone..I WOULD DO IT TOO...If i had the time and resources)

the second MOSt important aspect is getting these "highly recommended" parts on your cars...with a ZERO tolerance for compromise on the customers side...This is where the tuners and the customers need to be PRACTICAL..This is where all the Failure / success clause comes in.

I am delighted to notice this APPETITE off late and to see people with more money spent on engines and other mechanical components rather than spending on visual mods as the case was a few years ago..not to mention a dozen sub woofers coz the bass wasn't enough to make ones ears bleed...and as you all know...the visually satisfied lot of people comprise of another niche as well.. another market to be capitalized on..which is also being done...perfect for those who just want to have a flash ride...and more importantly seem have a higher level of satisfaction than people who decide to go out of their way to derive 200 + bhp out of a city / lancer / baleno and what not..

I actually pity the a certain person in bomaby who got a dyno setup to tap this lot of power hungry enthusiasts as he saw a market for it...but the fear in the minds of these enthusiasts to face the reality of their POWER : EXPENSE ratio has not been realised. (this puts both - the tuner and the customer on a tight spot...THE SO CALLED "DARK SIDE OF TUNING".

There a handful of people in every metro who have managed to squeeze the best out of their machines and still have some regrets in terms of comfort, drivability, practicality etc etc...

the Indian tuner market is not at par with countries like the USA, UK or Australia where one can just walk into a halfords or a UAS or CRD (tuners in Oz) and point and shoot and drive away with an extra XXX bhp or XXX level of lateral g's..etc etc..OUR PRODUCTION CARS ARE NOT MEANT FOR IT!!!!!..The market is simply not big enough for car manufactures or performance parts manufactures to consider offering them in our markets..

This situation is most favorable for our upcoming genre of tuners...IDEAS FOR SMALL BUSINESS UNITS ANYONE!!

to sum it up...There is a massive hunger for performance tuning in India...It's just lacking a proper homogolation of AVAILABLE RESOURCES (all sort of resources..)

Cheers..

P.S. This post is a result of personal experience and some good beer!!! aND i am NOT necessarily content with either!!!


Word of advice - DO YOUR RESEARCH!!!!!!

Last edited by R32_GTR : 1st December 2007 at 02:17.
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Old 1st December 2007, 03:52   #41
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Originally Posted by R32_GTR View Post
the second MOSt important aspect is getting these "highly recommended" parts on your cars...with a ZERO tolerance for compromise on the customers side...This is where the tuners and the customers need to be PRACTICAL..This is where all the Failure / success clause comes in.
R32,

Thanks for your reply. This is the most perceptive response. Atleast till tuners gain the size to be able to do testing before releasing, customers will have to participate as guinea pigs. I see that happening here in the US all the time. THe most enthusiastic customers particpate and put up with the the problems for the thrills, and they get first call on upgrades, improvements etc. They help fund the development, and with their tolerance for imperfection, they help perfect the systems. When perfected, the systems are sold as packages, ready to bolt on to any car, but at substantially higher prices.

If Indian enthusiasts don't have patience for participating in the development, they will have to live with what they can buy at the dealership.
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Old 1st December 2007, 12:28   #42
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Quote:
I actually pity the a certain person in bomaby who got a dyno setup to tap this lot of power hungry enthusiasts as he saw a market for it...but the fear in the minds of these enthusiasts to face the reality of their POWER : EXPENSE ratio has not been realised. (this puts both - the tuner and the customer on a tight spot...THE SO CALLED "DARK SIDE OF TUNING".
True. U can't just tune a car and say it has certain amount of power, unless you dyno test it.

I recently posted a thread on how fuel additives and octane boosters were tested in a lab and found to reduce overall power by 2-6% (while the fine print on the containers boasted of upto 10% increase).

Diff engines react differently to the various modifications done to them.

When a 850bhp Supra does 12.8 secs to the 1/4 mile, you know things aren't the way they are made to believe.

Shan2nu
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Old 1st December 2007, 15:40   #43
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Well as far as i have seen the tuner side in bangalore its been steadily growing and i do know of some tuners who do a really good and reliable jod and have access to some top notch equipment if the need arises. But look at the options that we have as cars we have in our industry, i had been through of more than 2 years of searching for baleno bolt on stuff till dec06...
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Old 22nd July 2008, 00:48   #44
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I just wanted to put a word regarding ECU tuning and upgrades that many companies provide. I lived in the US for over a decade and have experience with many high end electronics that mainly came from europe in the Biotech/pharma industry. As a hobby I have been a car enthusiast and worked part time with a company that is California based and are experts in ECU programming. Most tuners install chips that void warranty and I am not saying they aren't good, but any mod to the stock ECU leads to many complications which are either immediate or start with wear and tear in time. It also greatly depends on the gas quality, octane standards etc.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Actually, there are a handful of serious tuners in India. But yes, the numbers are surely limited in comparison to the market demand. For each big metro, you could count the serious tuners on your fingertips, with most of the best located down south.

Last edited by GTO : 22nd July 2008 at 12:48. Reason: Do NOT attempt to market your wares on Team-BHP
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Old 22nd July 2008, 13:21   #45
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I just saw this thread for the first time. As far as the question of the thread, that's not a yes or no question. It seems as if the poster is trying to see if the business opportunity might be there for him in India. Answer is, maybe, but it's a long hard road, no matter where you want to open/run a tuner shop, it's a test of your commitment and ability both. It will also take MUCH more money then most will ever guesstimate when putting together some initial numbers of starting and running this kind of business.

Will there be a market for this kind of business to live and strive at some point, yes, I believe so, is the market there now.. no, I don't think so. That is if you want to try and sustain yourself as a newcomer in the tuning world in India(or any new market), and primarily do nice/hardcore setups only. The market will mature, but that only happens when others stick their heads out and try it for themselves and basically teach the community at hand the basics of that world(which is what is happening now). At some point, the comfort level starts to sink in for more and more people and this kind of business can have enough business to succeed.

I personally am keeping an eye on the market, and would consider an operation within India. But I don't see it at a point where what I do can be sustained in a profitable manner at this time. However, I am proud of all of those currently brave enough to step out of the norm and do what seemed impossible in India not too long ago.

PS: I have many more comments/concerns about variables which make the Indian market different/harder to build and ensure reliable setups in, but I'll save that for some other time maybe.
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