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Hello , my name is Chris and I'm new to the forum needless to say ... I recently bought a 2001 outback sedan and I'm in love. From what I have read these cars put out 165 hp stock and I just wanted to know if any performance upgrades were around that anyone would recommend that would help me get a few more horses out of my car.
 

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Home (Xtreme Racing Tuning) for programming mods. He mostly works with newer Subarus, but I've been working with him on my 01 VDC H6 Supercharger project and he did a few ROM changes to the fuel map I downloaded with the car still stock and noticed improvements. After the 2nd download, my fuel mileage jumped to 27mpg, the third was just to raise the rev limiter, and initial programming for the SC is still being worked on.

Use the proper plugs, high octane, clean filters and keep the throttle body clean. Stay away from the "gimick" add-ons. Cold air feed works best if you can get the air from the fender area outside the engine compartment.

Put 300k miles on a 99 2.5 and never had to break a bolt on the engine except t-belts, water pumps, alt, hoses...the typical maintenance.
 

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The Subies are designed for efficiency. Everything in the design is to make it perform and last.

The intake tubing on the car is designed for air to travel in the most direct line. With the exception of the resonator built in to some of the models to quiet the intake air, they are highly efficient. To improve the air density, modify the intake to draw air in from the fender instead of the ram mounted above the radiator bracket which heats up the air passing through.

If you are wanting to do away with the filter box at the throttle body, find and older 2.2/2.5 intake duct, 96 to I believe 2000, and close off the pcv ports excepting one for the intake temperature sensor and run the duct over to the fender as the older cars had and then install a filter attachment that allows for it to pull in ambient air from the fender instead of the heated air of the engine compartment.

Otherwise, you could find one aftermarket and modify accordingly.

Attached is a pic of an older model with a 2.2. Maybe from it you can see the difference. (I built that motor and had time on my hands at the time while awaiting the block to be delivered from Oregon. My customer's favorite color is green.)
 

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Thank you very much for your help , and my last question is as far as the exhaust system goes would you leave it stock or is it a particular setup that you would recommend.
 

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The one in the photo has the resonator removed and an 18 bullet glass pack installed where the axle back muffler used to be. Its loud, has the typical boxer rattle/rumble but sounds really good. Really raspy when you let off the throttle in lower gears. You will be heard. Another option would be to mount a "turbo" muffler midway between the engine and rear bumper for a deeper sound. Either way, remove the resonator altogether.
 

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can you lose any weight? seriously, 11lbs = 1 hp.(approx. ) Do you really NEED that back seat?, passenger seat? If you'd always be able to call for help or a tow - lose the spare and jacking gear. Get lighter rims - reduces unsprung, rotating mass. maybe a lighter flywheel, light crank pulley. (these don't ADD hp, but eliminate 'wasted' hp)

and you can definitely put some sportier suspension bits on. get some better tires and maybe upgrade the brake pads. Make the car easier to toss around the corners.
 

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Good one. Just a few more:

Lose the roof rack, front and rear bumpers, no AC needed, eliminate the dash and just go with gauges, rip out the carpet, take out the interior trim. That totals a couple hundred pounds right there. Your VE will skyrocket.

On second thought, who needs gauges? Your supposed to be watching the road.
 

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If by 'short ram' you mean you want to stick a fancy looking metal pipe with a cone air filter in your engine bay, don't waste the money or time. What I've done to my car (based on the OP's work) doesn't add much if any actual HP to my car, but it did give me a bit of an improvement in throttle response and a bit more breadth to the power curve. It's cost me less than any CAI kit I've ever seen, and I don't mess up the engineering of the stock air box nor lose the proper cold air induction of the stock setup. It also sounds fun. :D

I don't understand this hatred of resonators. They're much less restrictive items than a muffler. Combined with a fairly free flowing and yet cheap muffler, they help keep the noise level to something civil yet fun. A glasspack is pretty much functionally like a resonator anyway, so yanking a resonator just to run through a glasspack is pretty much a wash. As long as you still have catalytic converters, especially stock ones, you aren't going to gain substantial overall HP by changing the exhaust on these cars.

Have you checked the head gaskets on that car? If you end up having to do those, you could take the opportunity to see if you can improve flow in the intake and heads a touch. (Has anybody really checked the accuracy of the castings on these engines? On less precise castings, just a 'match port' and cleanup can do surprising amounts of good. On many modern engines though, the castings are so precise there's no room for such a basic procedure.)
 

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Summary: Don't screw with an N/A Outback because it's not going to make much of a difference anyway.

Source: Comparing my point of view on cars from when I was 17, to age 24, realizing how much time and money I wasted.

Spend every dime you can bringing the engine to peak original performance, maintaining it as best you can. It will reward you with years of reliability, and be worry-free as you won't be using any sketchy homebrew (Intakes come to mind) or aftermarket parts.
 

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...be worry-free as you won't be using any sketchy homebrew (Intakes come to mind)...
Yeah, my engine blew up 3 times already because I don't have funny shaped chunks of plastic in the middle of my intake anymore. :rolleyes:
Its just an air pipe. It's not going to cause any reduction in reliability, or increase in wear and tear. Now an aftermarket turbo, supercharger, nitrous - that's adding stress and reduced life to an engine. That's also way more expensive.

My 24 years of driving have taught me a few things. ;)
 

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Yeah, my engine blew up 3 times already because I don't have funny shaped chunks of plastic in the middle of my intake anymore. :rolleyes:
Its just an air pipe. It's not going to cause any reduction in reliability, or increase in wear and tear. Now an aftermarket turbo, supercharger, nitrous - that's adding stress and reduced life to an engine. That's also way more expensive.

My 24 years of driving have taught me a few things. ;)
Actually, a forced induction system on an engine, when properly tuned and maintained will not only last a long time, but with the increase in torque and horsepower comes better fuel economy.

If its built for racing, that's a different category all together since those engines are built for getting all its worth all at once. That's why the engines are taken apart and rebuilt or replaced after a race. Porsche chunks their V8's after a 24 hour run.
 
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