Bringing the Heat: Under Control!

One of my favorite characteristics of this car is that there is no turbo lag nor sudden burst of turbo action. This has continued with the move to the very strong Precision 5130 turbo. And with this graduated boost application, it is now even better.

Even with the Nismo LSD there was some wheel spin when all 17 lbs of boost kicked in. That is, according to the seat of the pants dyno, being handled better. What is absolutely a joy is that the two issues that plagued the car setup last year are gone. There was a mid-range hiccup that occurred between  5 000 and 6 000 RPM that we could not find and erase. This was not an issue in most track settings where you are going to wide open throttle, but as AES has been analyzing my driving it has been discovered that I am not a ‘pedal to the metal’ all the time driver.

My driving characteristics include a lot of throttle modulations and this was most evident between turn 8 and 9 at Knox Mountain. Video footage from 2017 show me short shifting to move out of the stuttering range and into smoother action, but losing time and ground because of that. This was a section of the track where the full range of the gas pedal was required. The AES Auto tune and the ECUMaster Classic ECU have given me that range.


Here is the dyno run with the car putting down just a little over 300 whp in the fourth gear run on rather old Falken Azenis.

The second issue that plagued the car setup last year was a random and intermittent problem where the car would bog if you attempted anything beyond 3 000 RPM. As you can imagine, this SR20DET was pretty impotent when limited to 3 000 RPM, so we were absolutely being held back. It happened first thing in the morning. It happened late afternoon. When the car was cold. When it was hot. It was the most frustrating ailment ever. It was so random that it made no sense.

Have data logging setup? Have it on the dyno? Then, of course, the car would run perfectly and it would not happen. Have it on a course with thousands of spectators watching – well, okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration but at Knox Mountain, it was likely a couple of hundred – and it would happen. Sigh. Well, the new setup now has a CACC Time Attack plus the Hill Climb completed with absolutely no hiccups. The AES Auto tune and ECUMaster Classic ECU performed flawlessly.

Adding to the excitement of the hill climb was the launch control feature of the ECUMaster Classic. I had no time to practice this so my shifts were delayed and not ideal. This was almost too much excitement for this old guy. Pull up to the start line, mash the throttle to the floor and the ECUMaster revs the car to three grand. It stays there with a bit of popping and snapping but when the car begins to move it allows the full power to hit. This is really a lot of fun but also a great advantage for standing start events.

Working on safety in preparation for the running of the 61st Annual Knox Mountain Hill Climb I upgraded my G-LOC Brake Pad to R16 compound pads that were pre-bedded and race ready right out of the box. I also got a Black Armor carbon fiber helmet to ensure that my head was well protected as I went on to capture first in class.

Ensuring that I was controlling the increased horsepower I made a few changes to the braking system. First off I pulled off the G-LOC Brakes R12 compound pads and replaced them with R16 compound. These pads were pre-bedded and have a temperature rating to 1093°C or 2000F which is an increase over the R12’s 1015°C or 1860°F rating. I like getting my track pads bedded at the factory as it not only means that I can take full advantage of my track time, it means that the pads are fully bedded. That is not always the case when you try to bed in track pads that have an extremely high heat capacity.

I contacted GSpec Performance and let Greg know I wanted a larger brake master cylinder. He knew exactly what I needed and it was in my hands in no time. The increased bore of 15/16″ versus the NX’s factory 7/8″ should handle the need for additional capacity. Plus it literally bolts right in. Perfect.


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