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I purchased my 2010 GT 2.5L about 6 months ago. I love it but I would like to be able to squeeze a bit more performance out of the engine and improve fuel efficiency somewhat. I live in South Florida. I have been told that for other cars, such as Mitsubishi EVO and Subaru STI, there are things you can tweak & add on to do this:

* Reflash the ecu computer with an edited firmware (to adjust fuel/air mixture). I understand there is software that can do this by connecting a cable from your computer to the ecu.
* replace the stock air filter and intake with a higher performance model.

I am not looking for anything extreme. I am only looking to make some smart, light tuning adjustments to improve on what is already a good performing car. Another 20-30 hp would not hurt either.

Anyone knowledgeable with ideas?
 

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please learn to use the search function in teh future.

as far as reflashing goes, there appears to only be one company that does it (see link below). the aftermarket market is huge for the evos and wrxs, which is why they have a ton of different options to choose from.

there's a huge selection (http://mazda3revolution.com/forums/2010-mazda-3-discussion/4118-2010-mz3-performance-parts-list.html) of CAIs (cold air intakes) and SRIs (short ram intake). do research on both and take your pick.

and i can tell you that you're not gonna get anywhere near 20-30 hp of bolt-ons, which is pretty much all that's available right now.
 

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Andrew
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First start would be to replace the intake. Short Ram or Cold Air is up to you. I personally like the deeper tones of the short ram intakes. CorkSport and Simota are popular on this board, can't go wrong with either, really.

Exhaust...a lot of the models for the 2nd gen appear to be axle back exhausts so far, not full cat backs (except for the CorkSport one, i know there are others (magnaflow??)). A custom one could even be made at an exhaust shop.

Those would be the two i would look at replacing first. Those alone would probably show gains of maybe 10 horsepower to the wheels, more if you're lucky...it is hard to push horses out of a naturally aspirated engine. There is no standback ECU system yet, although hypertech is working on their product i believe, which will show ~10 horses? hopefully.

Eventually a header will be available.

Lighter wheels could also show improvement.
 

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does corksport make clip on exhaust because i wanna be able to replace the old one if i decide to return my carB
 

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it is hard to push horses out of a naturally aspirated engine.

Lighter wheels could also show improvement.
i wouldn't say hard; just expensive. for example, you could increase the compression, but to do that, you'd basically have to rebuild the engine with stronger internals.

also, the difference light weight wheels would make is next to unnoticeable. if you're gonna go with weight reduction to increase speed, you'd have to gut the interior to notice any significant change.
 

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is the high flow or race pipe better? and are they more exspensive?
 

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I've been looking for information related to DIY tweaking of the 2.5l Mazda L5-VE engine control unit in my '10 Mazda3 s Sport. I don't expect to go anywhere near it just now, but someday, who knows. What I've found, so far:

There are one or two tuning shops or services out there on the forums/Internets that have offered this service. With at least one, you do have to remove the ECU and ship it to them, I assume along with logged realtime wideband O2, EGT, etc. performance data generated using the right kind of dynometer. Dynatronics (San Antonio, TX) is one such shop, having announced the "MZR 2.5l" ECU was format was 'cracked' this past July.

The Tactrix Openport 2.0 may have evolved around Subaru and Mitsubishi platforms, but it appears to have been used successfully on some recent Mazdas. The Epifan EcuEdit project may have started in the Subaru camp, but has branched out to MazdaEdit, whose 2009 compatibility included 1st mazdaspeeds, CX7, RX8, mazda3, mazda6, and the mx-5.

This is bleeding edge stuff, and it's not clear to me from what I've found there is support for 2nd gen mazda3's yet, including out 2.5l L5-VE's ECU. It isn't clear if that means the hardware interface won't work to read/write the firmware tables, or if it's that they're in a format and/or envelope that hasn't been deciphered yet. This isn't surprising, if the 1st gen layout as described by dynotronics is any indication: "thing is, the MZ3 has something like 83 maps for the early model, and the ms3, has over 200! So you have to be able to find the correct map to do what you want, and I can tell you, it ain't easy!" Suffice to say, if the MazdaEdit software hasn't been developed to support the L5-VE, assuming you can still read the tables, you're potentially talking about some hex editor fun just to hopefully figure it out. Even if it does work, anecdotal evidence suggests it's only marginally more helpful than the hex editor. Unfortunately, your car's engine is the alpha test, so this is not really 'consumer-friendly.' Apparently this all came about by Mazda and Subaru both using "Denso with a Renesas SHxxxx chipset" ECUs. Anyway, even if all this matures a bit, or has matured, to a nice editing interface, it's still essentially brain surgery on your ECU's programming; it takes methodical care and access to the right dynometer to come up with alternate values for the ECU tables.

I'm hopeful that there'll be some nicely polished affordable software to do it, and that tune shops in general start offering it. If you need the dynometer anyway, that'd be the obvious place to get an engine tuned, right? But having the software yourself for minor tweaks and to track changes, verify tuning changes, well, that couldn't hurt, could it?

But yeah, what the others said, relatively speaking, this is probably not a performance mod starting spot. But the above stuff and similar projects seem totally worth keeping an eye on over the next few years.
 

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Thanks to Akrynym and others for your suggestions. I will probably start with the intake, then exhaust thereafter. The ecu will wait until there is a more user friendly method (via cable connected to laptop) or easier shop/dyno version...
 

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ZOOM ZOOM
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is the high flow or race pipe better? and are they more exspensive?
the racepipe is $60, while the high-flow cat is $260. installing the racepipe removes the stock cat and will add slightly more hp (due to less restriction in the system), but it may not be legal under the emissions laws in your state or county - if you are planning on going this route, check with your mechanic first!
 

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I purchased my 2010 GT 2.5L about 6 months ago. I love it but I would like to be able to squeeze a bit more performance out of the engine and improve fuel efficiency somewhat. I live in South Florida. I have been told that for other cars, such as Mitsubishi EVO and Subaru STI, there are things you can tweak & add on to do this:

* Reflash the ecu computer with an edited firmware (to adjust fuel/air mixture). I understand there is software that can do this by connecting a cable from your computer to the ecu.
* replace the stock air filter and intake with a higher performance model.

I am not looking for anything extreme. I am only looking to make some smart, light tuning adjustments to improve on what is already a good performing car. Another 20-30 hp would not hurt either.

Anyone knowledgeable with ideas?


I think 30 hp may be a little too ambitious.

if I'm not mistaken, the CorkSport short ram intake, for instance, will give you about 10 hp, and the CorkSport cat back exhaust will add another 4 hp. the intake & exhaust will set you back about $700-$900 depending on the configuration you choose for the exhaust.

Hypertech makes a well-regarded programmer, but it is not yet available for the 2010 2.5L engine. A rep from Hypertech said on another forum that they are working on it, and it will be available soon. The unit for the 2.3L engine yields 6 hp & 7 ft.-lbs. torque with regular gas and 7 hp & 10 ft.-lbs. torque with premium gas, to give you an idea of what to expect. here's the link to the 2009 unit: Hypertech. I believe it costs about $500.

so for about $1200-$1400, you're looking at about a 20hp gain.



(I own the CorkSport SRI and am very pleased with it - if you'd like to know more about it or have any questions, feel free to ask me.)
 
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