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After six months of driving my ST stock I have decided it's time to treat myself and the car to a bit more unlocked potential.

My question is exactly how should I go about it?

I was going to fit all the parts and then map it last however this seems to cause various issues ie running rich off the downpipe, CAIS MAF problems so I am looking for some clarification - what order should I carry out my mods in (aiming for around 300bhp)

I want to use a Dreamscience Imap having added a GGR CAIS, Airtec Intercooler, Cat back exhaust and downpipe, and a block mod. Is this a feasible setup? Are there better options out there for around the same total money? I'm new at this, please be nice :lmao:
 

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Personally, I would either save up for it all to be done in one go, OR buy the additional parts individually, hold them until you have everything and then... do it all in one go.

I changed piece by piece on my Astra VXR previously and it just didn't feel right, you don't feel too much of an increase, you become susceptible to faults as the car isn't used to a certain piece of hardware. You can get 300-320 BHP with circa £2k from pretty much each tuner give or take their own differences. I would suggest also getting a sports cat, as upgrading either side of the CAT and then leaving the middle makes no sense to me personally.

I have a KMS Thunderstorm turbo-back exhaust with 200 cell sports cat, Group A Induction kit setup, Turbosmart 50/50 recirculation valve, Airtec Stage 2 intercooler and stage 2 remap. Running anywhere between 300 and 330 (need to get it on a dyno).

You may also find that the clutch will slip in higher gears, I experienced this as soon as I got my Stage 2 package, you need to drive with the power as opposed to the torque. You will need to budget for an RS clutch too (circa £850/900) fitted .
 

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If it's a 2007 car, it's due a cambelt anyway... so having the block mod done costs peanuts extra - so at least that's not too bad.

Agree with @JJB on the RS clutch and the sports cat.

Maybe doing stage 1 (260bhp ish) then stage 2 (300bhp ish) is the way forward?
 

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If it's a 2007 car, it's due a cambelt anyway... so having the block mod done costs peanuts extra - so at least that's not too bad.

Agree with @JJB on the RS clutch and the sports cat.

Maybe doing stage 1 (260bhp ish) then stage 2 (300bhp ish) is the way forward?
What's mentioned here is a good way around it depending on your timescales, if we're talking years, then getting the stage 1, and easing up to stage 2 is feasible. If it's over the course of 6 months you'll find yourself paying for 2 remaps
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Personally, I would either save up for it all to be done in one go, OR buy the additional parts individually, hold them until you have everything and then... do it all in one go.

I changed piece by piece on my Astra VXR previously and it just didn't feel right, you don't feel too much of an increase, you become susceptible to faults as the car isn't used to a certain piece of hardware. You can get 300-320 BHP with circa £2k from pretty much each tuner give or take their own differences. I would suggest also getting a sports cat, as upgrading either side of the CAT and then leaving the middle makes no sense to me personally.

I have a KMS Thunderstorm turbo-back exhaust with 200 cell sports cat, Group A Induction kit setup, Turbosmart 50/50 recirculation valve, Airtec Stage 2 intercooler and stage 2 remap. Running anywhere between 300 and 330 (need to get it on a dyno).

You may also find that the clutch will slip in higher gears, I experienced this as soon as I got my Stage 2 package, you need to drive with the power as opposed to the torque. You will need to budget for an RS clutch too (circa £850/900) fitted .
I'm going to wait for the clutch to go and then just replace it with an RS one, that way I can justify the expense to myself.

In regard to the cat, if I take my tune off or go for a low power tune ie the performance+ for long stretches of motorway driving would the mods throw up an error code? I have read that a downpipe without tuning causes issues, that a CAIS can depending on the positioning of the sensor etc so if I drop below a reasonably powerful tune will I have the christmas tree effect on my dash?

Looks like I'm stockpiling parts until I can afford to have it all done, cheers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What's mentioned here is a good way around it depending on your timescales, if we're talking years, then getting the stage 1, and easing up to stage 2 is feasible. If it's over the course of 6 months you'll find yourself paying for 2 remaps
I was planning over a year to a year and a half. If I'm using a flash map like the IMAP would this change the way I have to apply tunes? Or is it just a case of matching hardware to software?
 

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Might be worth calling a few places and see if they'll do a discount on a 0-to-stage 2 package...

Alternatively, Christmas is a good time to pick up some decent discounts.
 

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I'm going to wait for the clutch to go and then just replace it with an RS one, that way I can justify the expense to myself.

In regard to the cat, if I take my tune off or go for a low power tune ie the performance+ for long stretches of motorway driving would the mods throw up an error code? I have read that a downpipe without tuning causes issues, that a CAIS can depending on the positioning of the sensor etc so if I drop below a reasonably powerful tune will I have the christmas tree effect on my dash?

Looks like I'm stockpiling parts until I can afford to have it all done, cheers.
The thing is with the clutch, if you're doing long motorway mileage you're going to be finding yourself dropping gears just to increase a little bit of speed. At 70mph it is drive able, but it is highly recommended to switch the clutch either before or shortly after tuning. It's not going to be a situation where it's all of a sudden one day going to pack in (although there is a chance of that), but it will become less and less drive able. I'd budget it for it anyhow... I had the same thoughts about the clutch and 3/4 weeks after tuning I'm thinking of getting it changed sooner rather than later

I don't know about it throwing up codes, however logic tells me that if the cat is mapped in, it's mapped in, the car will not throw codes. I've heard stories of people doing a cat back and sports cat etc. getting it mapped, and then revisiting the down pipe and/or decat afterwards which is what makes the car throw the codes up. I've got a sports cat, it's been mapped with a sports cat on, and it's not throw a code up to day.

About the timescale, the IMAP should be fine, but you'd need to match the associated software to the hardware you have, like you mentioned, to get the most out of your car.
 

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Where are you located pal?

Going to sound boring here, but sort the car out first.

Have it checked out by a specialist, change the tyres, check all your bushes, all your suspension is in order etc etc etc.

Personal opinion mod wise, sort handling out first before adding more power. You will find that a well sorted ST handling wise will run rings around much more powerful ST's running standard suspension.

B12's, rear ARB and updated bushes will create a great handling car (well, for a heavy front wheel drive car, a type R the st is not, no matter what you do).

Stage 1 map should be enough for most people and will give the biggest "bang for buck" - personal recommendation would be to use Collins. All other engine mods will increase power (obviously) but you won't feel a night and day difference. Still noticeable just not standard to stage 1 noticeable

If you can't afford the full exhaust, go for a down pipe and sport / race cat - the catback does nothing other than loud noises.....
 

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Where are you located pal?

Going to sound boring here, but sort the car out first.

Have it checked out by a specialist, change the tyres, check all your bushes, all your suspension is in order etc etc etc.

Personal opinion mod wise, sort handling out first before adding more power. You will find that a well sorted ST handling wise will run rings around much more powerful ST's running standard suspension.

B12's, rear ARB and updated bushes will create a great handling car (well, for a heavy front wheel drive car, a type R the st is not, no matter what you do).

Stage 1 map should be enough for most people and will give the biggest "bang for buck" - personal recommendation would be to use Collins. All other engine mods will increase power (obviously) but you won't feel a night and day difference. Still noticeable just not standard to stage 1 noticeable

If you can't afford the full exhaust, go for a down pipe and sport / race cat - the catback does nothing other than loud noises.....
South East

It had a full £300 inspection and has done about 1000 miles since it passed perfectly. It's not the money outright as much as it is bang for buck, I'd like a good deal of performance and a pleasing noise as well as a degree of choice but I also don't want to break the bank as I do have other responsibilities :lmao:
 

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Any suggestions? I don't know much about handling mods
Things you'd want to look at initially..

Shocks/Springs (get a set where the two are matched for biggest improvement)

Front bushes (these leak anyway so best off getting rid of the standard) - can also get an entire wishbone replacement inc all bushes for a reasonable price...

RCA kit (if lowering)

Front & Rear Droplinks

Anti Roll Bar

Some parts above you could get away with if the parts haven't failed (bushes/droplinks) - but they do totally transform the car and are well worth the investment.

I'd also make sure your discs/pads are up to scratch before adding more power (standard ford parts are fine unless you're tracking if you do need replacements)

Finally, make sure you're running some decent rubber - (PS4, Contisports etc) - get the absolute best you can afford. ST is a performance car and needs performance tyres!
 

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I largely agree with @mofisto - check the bushes and get some decent suspension on the car. Worth joining STOC to get discounted prices from A&K (Andy) on here too.

My opinion...

  • Make sure the car is a good solid base - check bushes. Hardrace stuff (A&K again) is really nicely made.
  • Get the cambelt and block mod done
  • Get an intercooler from A&K
  • Optional: CAIS for sound
  • Get a handset to remap to stage 1
  • Be prepared for clutch to start slipping. To a degree you can drive around this for a bit
  • Get some decent suspension (I don't agree that an uprated ARB is required with appropriate suspension, but many will disagree with me)
  • De-res the standard exhaust for a few cheeky pops and bangs
  • Enjoy, and consider stage 2...
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I largely agree with @mofisto - check the bushes and get some decent suspension on the car. Worth joining STOC to get discounted prices from A&K (Andy) on here too.

My opinion...

  • Make sure the car is a good solid base - check bushes. Hardrace stuff (A&K again) is really nicely made.
  • Get the cambelt and block mod done
  • Get an intercooler from A&K
  • Optional: CAIS for sound
  • Get a handset to remap to stage 1
  • Be prepared for clutch to start slipping. To a degree you can drive around this for a bit
  • Get some decent suspension (I don't agree that an uprated ARB is required with appropriate suspension, but many will disagree with me)
  • De-res the standard exhaust for a few cheeky pops and bangs
  • Enjoy, and consider stage 2...
Thank you, exactly what I was looking for.

Would just getting front bushes suffice or would I need the whole set. As for suspension could I get away with like £300 eibachs or is that not substantial enough?
 

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I'd agree with a lot of the comments especially the stage 1 remap being the biggest bang for buck, once I'd got to stage 3+, the best mod was as Alex has mentioned, the B12's and rarb. The B12's are a great compromise between being not too hard as to effect comfort around town but good handling on a spirited A road drive. Polybushing the front end is a great start, I went for the hardrace wishbone setup which with the B12's and elevate rarb, the difference was night and day. :)
 

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Thank you, exactly what I was looking for.

Would just getting front bushes suffice or would I need the whole set. As for suspension could I get away with like £300 eibachs or is that not substantial enough?
First off, do the bushes need doing? If not, they can wait - that said I've just refreshed the rear on my car and it feels so much better.

In my opinion, if you're going to do it... replace the suspension, not just the springs. A&K do Bilstein and BC Coilovers... and there used to be group buys on here too. As I've said, Christmas is good for offers and bargains. :)
 
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