Selecting your performance upgrade
Most drivers are sold on horsepower when it comes to an engine upgrade or vehicle purchase.
The two bar charts (right) show two completely different driving conditions. If you mainly use your car for the road then you need to be looking for an upgrade with good low end torque. If you use your car for track days then you need to be looking towards an upgrade with good top end power.
The highest horsepower is found right at the higher end of the rpm range. If you aren’t driving your car in this area of the rev range then there is no point wasting your money on an upgrade, where you will never feel the benefit.
Whilst an F155 upgrade, may only offer a 140 Caterham Supersport owner 15 horse power more than their current Caterham engine, the driveability, increased low end and mid-range torque and throttle response of our upgrade feel completely different to drive compared with what they are used to.
What drivers of these cars are looking for is throttle response and torque. Even fitting one of our ultralight flywheel and clutches to a 125 bhp Sigma, completely changes the driving experience of the engine, making it very responsive and makes it feel very sporty. We feel this is the best value performance upgrade you can fit to any Sigma….and it does nothing for horse power.
Horse Power sells engines….Torque wins races!!
The Sigma is a very underestimated engine due to Caterham’s marketing. The engine is very lightweight compared to the Duratec. In standard form, it is 15kgs lighter than the Duratec and with our modifications, we can make this a further 8 kgs lighter, making it 23 kgs lighter than a 2.0 litre Duratec.
Due to the capacity difference between the two engines, the Sigma has lower torque than the Duratec but the lighter engine components used in the Sigma mean this isn’t as noticeable. The Sigma as standard from Caterham is fitted with the standard Ford heavy flywheel. The Duratec is not, giving the impression the Duratec is a much more powerful engine.
Our general rule is and this is speaking as a Caterham owner, not a performance tuning company, up to 200 bhp, stay with the Sigma. Over 200 bhp, move to a Duratec.
Caterham are producing a car, at a price and hence are not going to fit small volume parts which come at a price, to their entry level cars. This will affect their “foot in the door” sales. What we are offering is to transform a great engine into something that suits the car and that greatly enhances the driving experience. The lighter engine also helps to promote better car handling.
Re-sale value of modified cars is a much discussed topic on forums these days. Our view on this is that as our products become more popular in the market place, these cars will demand a higher re-sale price as these are recognised quality products that differ greatly from the standard Caterham specification. Our customers are our best form of marketing and we recognise this.