Daewoo Lanos Tuning – Intelligent Performance – Part One

Anyone can purchase a bunch of bolt on MODS and make their car faster. What if you don’t have that much money to spend on the car or the car is like a Daewoo Lanos and doesn’t have much aftermarket support? Also, how do you know what MODS will give you the most bang for the buck? For this article, I dive into Daewoo Lanos Tuning. Grab a pen and paper and your notebook and enjoy while I focus on the MODS most people can do, without spending lots of hard earned cash and still get some great results.

Since the motor is basically a big air pump, the first thing I will work on is the breathing. Increasing the volumetric efficiency on a newer car does not have the results it would on say an 80’s car, but it’s still the best place to start. The goal is by allowing the engine to breath more easily, it will breath more and hence, more power.

Notes regarding performance testing: For a baseline run, all I have is the 0-60 times I took soon after buying the car. For a more accurate 0-60, I should have a space of road that I can go both directions and take the average, but that’s not available. All the 0-60 times are taken from a specific stop sign where I’m not breaking the speed limit. Also, since the car is an automatic and doesn’t have enough power for wheelspin, the times are very consistent. Future MODS should have the other information as well.

Stock Quotes

0-60: 11.5

30-70 MPH Time: 11.5

Ambient Air Temp: N/A

Air Intake: The first thing to do is look at the stock system and see where there might be any obvious points of improvement. While looking over the Daewoo, I noticed an air box muffler prior to the air box, wrinkled intake line, and a 2″ diameter tube going into the intake box. I’ll try to address all of these to find where the most restrictions are. Another way to check would be making a “manometer” which would measure the pressure drop in inches of water. This can be made with a 20 oz soda bottle, clear tube, wooden dowel, and some food coloring.

Air Box: The first MOD was done within a few days of buying the car new. Simply remove the intake muffler that resides in the fender, and place the flared piece directly on the air box to draw cold air from the fender. It’s important to retain the stock position when drawing in the air since the air in the fender is much cooler than that in the engine bay. For every 4 degrees C, that the air is cooler, that is about a 1% power increase. Though the results are not very good, the sound was much better, but still not well enough. Not bad for a free MOD that just took a little time.

Air Box

0-60: 10.5

30-70 MPH Time: N/A

Ambient Air Temp: N/A

Exhaust: The exhaust for the most part looks pretty good, 1.75″ and crush bends. I really don’t think a new exhaust will do much for this car, but there are some areas that can use some tweaking. The first is the CAT right after the exhaust manifold. While this is great for emissions, it’s too restrictive for performance reasons. Also, since the car is a LEV, removing this CAT might not have that bad of an effect on emissions. Also of course is the stock muffler which as a general rule, especially on cheap cars, is restrictive. Finally some mild porting to the exhaust manifold might yield a little bit of power.

Muffler: Stock mufflers are generally rather restrictive. From an automakers standpoint, people are more interested in a quiet car and one way to make a car quiet is with a cheap and restrictive muffler. I simply cut off the old muffler and welded on a 2.25″ straight through design muffler with a “ricey” tip. Normally I would not buy that particular type of tip, but I got the muffler used with the tip already on it. The resulting sound is non intrusive.


0-60: 10.7

30-70 MPH Time: 11.76

Ambient Air Temp: 50F

Location Of Probe / Hi Lo

Temp @ Airbox: 58.4C/137F 8.6C/47F

Temp in Airbox: 41C/105.8F 5C/41F

Temp in Fender: 23.1C/73F 7.4C/41F

You might be wondering why it’s a little slower on the 0-60. Well, in True Portland style, the testing was carried out during rainy conditions which led to wheelspin.

Click here for Part Two of this Article.