What does a larger intercooler get me? - Subaru WRX Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-01-2010, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
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What does a larger intercooler get me?

I just read the post by synolimit and think he is doing way more than I ever dreamed of doing to my car, but a question came up on Friday I wanted to ask about. Synolimit did do the larger intercooler, but also more than I'm doing so I want to find out about it as a stand alone part.

I have a '10 WRX and after much research am doing the following mods (1-4) were my primary. 5-6 just popped up last week and I want some advice. This will probably be it for my mods, I want some more performance and better handling from the car, but don't want to get too involved due to other commitments with life/work, etc... Typical 44 y/o male with family obligations type stuff, but I'm not through having fun yet.

Following mods:

1.) Whiteline sway bars w/Kartboy endlinks. Don't need engine mods of the handling isn't there, so this is the first mod I wanted, will have them in next week.

2.) Ixiz pitch stop. The first thing I did myself to a car in 25 years. Easy swap and it was an immediate improvement in the driveline.

3.) Accessport. I am at Stage 1 93 octane now. This is the gas I can get here in Texas, so it's what I use. See #'s 5 and 6 below for related questions. I wanted to stay at stage 1, but if stage 2 is not much more of a problem, why not. Please read on.

4.) Shifter bushings. I put the front in already, can't quite figure out how to get the rear in yet. A great quick mod and noticed immediate improvement over stock.

5.) Cobb downpipe. Next Friday. This leads to the next question, this is where I was going to stop with the mods, but don't want to stop short of noticable improvements with a little more effort.
I am going to have MZM in Austin do this one because I heard it's a little more complicated than I have time for. When they came out to look at my car, they noticed my '10 has a larger turbo than previous models and said that a larger intercooler would greatly help. WHY? and WHAT WILL IT DO FOR ME? If this is an easy modification that will give me some solid gains, can't see a reason not to do it, even if it wasn't on my list above. Can someone help me out here? Worth it or not? Is the turbo on an '10 that much bigger than an 08 that it would matter with regards to this part?

6.) Upgrade to stage 2 with the downpipe on. This was also recommended, though it wasn't on my list. Something I should go for? I am not going to do anything other than the downpipe to the exhaust, but like #5 above, don't want to walk away from it if it's something easy that will get me a little more power.

Any information would greatly be appreciated. I have searched these topics online for a while, but they are always tied to greater modifications. Since this is where I want to stop, my questions are a little different.

Thanks again for the help,

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post #2 of 7 Old 05-01-2010, 10:42 PM
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Yes, the 09 and up has a larger turbo than any other generation WRX's. It's the same turbo as the STi's get, just with a different compressor housing. It might take a bit off the top end but it can still throw down the power.

On the intercooler, I've done mine and it's been a huge part of my build. There's a few reasons you want to do one.

1- Doesn't have the plastic end tanks that tend to pop off with higher boost over 17 or so psi.
2- Actually has less boost drop over the core than the stock intercooler, aka the turbo has to work less to get the same results
3- Better cooling over the stock intercooler, so you have lower intake air temps which allow you to run more boost and timing which equals more power
4- Larger core gives you the ability to cool more air at a given point in time, so a larger intercooler is better for a larger turbo that can flow more air.
5- Install takes literally 10 minutes... Just use some motor oil to lube up the exit port on the TMIC to help it slide on the throttle body... It's a tight connection.

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post #3 of 7 Old 05-03-2010, 04:04 AM
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in for later...

also, does the Perrin top mount fit in the stock location without any mods? It seems like this is the only brand that people are using if they are sticking with a top mount. anyone care to post up some side by side shots of stock vs. perrin?
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post #4 of 7 Old 05-03-2010, 08:36 AM
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Perrin TMIC Installed

That's the thread I did when I installed mine. There's a few comparison shots in there.

Also, look at the Process West TMIC... It's quite a bit larger, and comes with a new hood scoop ducting setup to cover the whole TMIC. It came out a couple weeks after I got the Perrin and I probably would have got that over the Perrin since it's so much larger.

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post #5 of 7 Old 05-03-2010, 09:11 AM
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OP, everything RWD said about aftermarket is correct. only difference between a top mount and the front mount is the heat soak the TM will get like in traffic, drag racing staging lanes, on the dyno. the dyno is the worst place to get it because the tuner will have to back off some timing and stuff which will be a loss in power. the daily driving and traffic will hurt a TMIC over anything. dont know why someone would need max power in traffic but you get what im saying.

i just also love the look! frees up so much more room in the engine bay and you can get at stuff so much easier!! finding deals matters too. the process west TMIC is probably the best one you can buy but is costs the same as a TurboXS FMIC. that right there seals the deal!

Scott-2011 WRX 335HP 394TQ 93 VF52!
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post #6 of 7 Old 05-03-2010, 09:43 AM
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And the WRX 08 and up TMICs have just about no piping at all. Which means it normally has a lot better throttle responce over a FMIC. I mean, its all about what your after. FMICs are prone to stone and road damage way more than a TMIC. Realistically it shouldn't hurt your dyno results that much if your tuner has some big ass fans that will cool it off, as if the car was moving in real life. Most tuners will have that. Not a lot of people should be worried about what their tmic is doing sitting still in traffic. The guy in front of you can be shooting his exhaust straight into your FMIC for all that matters. There is pros and cons to everything.

Back OT, Rcrswetdream covered most of the plus sides to upgrading your I/C to a bigger one. Its normally not done unless your willing to do a lot more to your car. But, I'm sure it can't hurt much to a stock stage 2 set-up either. It'd just require the tuner to adjust the OTS stage 2 map for the larger I/C. You might squeeze out some a few more ponies and if you live in a hot climate it'd be a benefit.

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post #7 of 7 Old 05-03-2010, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the information guys. Some stuff to think about...

I'll probably do it, mainly for the heat and traffic down here in Texas, but it wasn't on my list of must have's when I started. Now it seems that the marginal cost is only a few hundred dollars anyway.

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