7 Car Enhancements to Maximize Power From Your Muscle Car

7 Car Enhancements to Maximize Power From Your Muscle Car


What’s the point of having a muscle car if not for the performance, power, and thrilling driving experience? Since the mid-1960s, muscle cars have been the go-to for anyone looking for performance-oriented street cars. Their distinct, broad bodies and powerful engines can outperform nearly all regular cars. If you get it right, you might fetch a fortune when you finally decide to sell your muscle car. According to The Street, the most expensive muscle car is the 1962 Shelby Cobra CSX2000, which sold for $13.75 million.

But what if there was a way to improve their performance even further? Here are seven car enhancements that will maximize the power of your muscle car and take it to the next level. Let’s jump in.

1. Repair Driveline Components

Your driveline components are crucial for power transmission from the engine to the wheels. They include the driveshaft, axles, transmission, joints, and differentials. It is these components that typically handle the full force and power of your car. Therefore, they are often prone to damage, especially in powerful vehicles like muscle cars.

To maximize the power of your muscle car, you need to repair these driveline components after a while. One of the most important repairs you can perform is an auto transmission rebuild. According to the Universal Technical Institute, the transmission is one of the most essential car components and is responsible for transmitting power from the engine to the wheels. Your auto transmission system is essential for automatic gear shifting when driving. This factor makes it a crucial component to have your car running at peak performance.

To rebuild your auto transmission, you will need an expert mechanic to inspect each part. After inspection, the mechanic must replace damaged parts and parts with friction surfaces. That means you will need new parts like clutches, bands, gaskets, and seals. With a complete rebuild of your transmission, you can only expect an exhilarating driving experience with the full force of your muscle car.

The driveshaft is another important component you should check and repair. It is the part responsible for transmitting torque, mechanical power, and rotation. This element makes it crucial for maximizing your vehicle’s power. By repairing or replacing your driveshaft, you guarantee smooth transmission of power and torque.

Overly, these repairs will maximize the power of your muscle car by ensuring none is lost during transmission. However, before starting this process, it is crucial to note that your car insurance company may not cover the expense. Most insurance companies don’t bill repairs or car enhancements unless they are a result of covered incidents.

2. Modify Engine Output

Modifying your engine’s output is perhaps the most crucial of all car enhancements. Through this, you can increase your car’s horsepower, making it even faster. According to Dodge Garage, the 2023 Dodge Challenger SRT® Demon 170 has set the ceiling with an impressive 1025hp, the most powerful car in the world. With some modifications, you could try to achieve a similar feat. However, while modifying a petroleum engine is relatively easy, you may need a professional for diesel engine services. So how do you go about modifying engine output?

First, you must increase your engine’s air intake. A car engine is practically an air pump; the more the air intake, the more power it puts out. To achieve this, you only need to install a cold air intake on your muscle car. A cold air intake will help eradicate the sharp bents of typical stock intakes that restrict air passage. This measure will increase airflow, which will, in turn, trigger more fuel release, resulting in more power.

Besides upgrading your engine’s air intake, you could also install (chips) a performance tuner. These are chips typically plugged into your vehicle diagnostic port. From there, they improve performance by modifying the timing and fuel maps. While most performance tuners typically increase power at the expense of fuel economy, there are special ones that can improve fuel economy.

Another way to modify your engine for better performance is by installing a boost controller. However, this is for cars coming from manufacturers with superchargers or turbochargers. In this case, a boost controller lets you adjust the boost level to your liking. Experts caution against increasing your boost level by 15-10% over the factory setting. They also recommend installing a boost gauge in conjunction with the controller for caution.

Cleaning the fuel also comes in handy when trying to improve performance. Cleaning away all the deposits optimizes the spray pattern, improving fuel combustion and horsepower. However, it is wise to consult with your auto insurance when carrying out these modifications. Some modifications could increase insurance premiums or nullify coverage if not reported.

3. Fix Damaged Parts

Damaged parts in whatever car are always a drag. But more significantly, they can substantially reduce the performance of your muscle car. Accidental collision is one of the common ways that your car parts may incur damage.

Ranging from minor to severe collision damage is the number one risk to your car’s performance. From speed and cornering to braking distance, the list of performance aspects impacted by damaged parts is endless. So, what parts may require collision repair in case of an accident?

In the event of a collision, shock absorbers are often prone to damage. It may occur in the form of weakened or broken springs. Such damage may result in reduced vehicle stability, uneven tire wear, and prolonged braking distance. All these are detrimental to your car’s health and performance. To ensure your muscle car performs optimally, get any damaged shock absorbers fixed or replaced.

Besides collision damage, other car parts may become faulty over time through natural wear and tear. These include parts like brake pads, which may become damaged or worn out with time. Wearing out may result in poor handling and increased braking distance, which impacts your car’s performance. Overall, repairing damaged parts and other car enhancements will go a long way to improving your car’s power.

4. Add Engine Management Software

Another vital enhancement that will have your muscle car outperforming all the others is installing engine management software. It is a part of the engine management system that controls how an engine runs by monitoring its speed, temperature, and load. The engine management system also generates the ignition spark at the apt moment. It also serves to measure the fuel released into the engine precisely. These combined functions can help you maximize your muscle car’s power.

Besides the software, the engine management system has various electronic components. They include the sensors, actuators, relays, and, most importantly, the ECU (engine control unit). The ECU regulates the amount of fuel injected into the engine’s cylinders. This action optimizes the air-fuel mixture, which, when composed, increases the car’s power output.

By regulating the amount of fuel injected, the ECU also helps with fuel conservation. However, it is crucial to note that the ECU only works on cars equipped with electronic fuel injection. That means if your car doesn’t have this feature, you will first need to visit your local aftermarket auto accessory company for installation.

Ultimately, adding engine management software to your muscle car is a great way to improve its performance. The software will coordinate all these parts, allowing for smooth running of the engine, fuel economy, and maximum power output. Of all the car enhancements you could undertake, this is perhaps the most essential. According to Car Advise, replacing an engine control module costs between $140 and $1155.

5. Upgrade Exhaust System

Upgrading your exhaust system is one of the simplest car enhancements that guarantees increased engine output. A simple exhaust upgrade can significantly increase power and torque depending on your car model. When combined with other car enhancements, the power output has become phenomenal.

The exhaust system is responsible for collecting and releasing exhaust gasses from the engine cylinders. This function affects the back pressure and gas flow, significantly impacting an engine’s performance. The exhaust system also affects fuel economy, which is crucial when running a muscle car. These reasons make such upgrades appealing, but first, consult your classic car insurance to avoid increased premiums.

A great exhaust system offers better exhaust balancing, resulting in lower back pressure. With lower back pressure, the engine will expel the exhaust gasses efficiently. This measure will significantly improve its breathing and, consequently, its output. Moreover, an upgraded exhaust will also optimize gas flow, which will serve the engine tremendously.

There are various ways to upgrade your exhaust system. For instance, you could opt to improve the downpipe. A small pipe in your vehicle directs exhaust gasses from the car’s turbine housing and into the exhaust system. By upgrading the downpipe, you can have the exhaust gasses leave the engine sooner and more swiftly.

Alternatively, you could replace your single-pipe exhaust system with a dual one. Almost every muscle car you see on the road at some point has to go to a local car repair shop for this procedure. That’s because this dual-pipe exhaust reduces the backup pressure on the engine more efficiently than a single one. It does this by splitting the gasses between the two pipes, thus resulting in lower resistance and less back pressure.

Another way to upgrade your exhaust system is by installing a performance muffler. It is an add-on part that optimizes exhaust flow and reduces back pressure. Through this action, your car will register better torque and horsepower. The muffler also lowers the high-pitched exhaust noise without increasing the exhaust pressure.

6. Ensure Alignment

Wheel alignment is adjusting wheels to have them perpendicular to each other. It is a must-have feature for any car, but it is even more crucial for a powerful muscle car. Correctly aligned wheels are not only necessary for performance but also vital for safety. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration(NHTSA), there are 11000 tire-related vehicle crashes annually, which lead to the unfortunate death of 600 people.

Misaligned wheels typically reduce the stability of your car. And for a powerful vehicle like a muscle car, this can often prove fatal. Misaligned wheels can drag the car to one side, making it difficult for the driver to steer. Steering may become almost impossible at high speeds, placing you at risk of causing an accident.

Besides safety, misaligned wheels could also result in irregular wearing out of the tires. That means that some of the tires may wear out faster than others. Moreover, some of them may even incur permanent damage.

Wheel misalignment also affects performance by reducing speed and fuel efficiency. By dragging the wheels on the ground, misalignment results in higher friction. This friction reduces speed and increases fuel consumption since the tires don’t rotate efficiently. Misaligned wheels also cause uncomfortable vibrations that make the driving experience less enjoyable.

Therefore, alignment is crucial to solving all these problems. You must visit your local auto shop for these car enhancements. Using an alignment machine, mechanics will measure the angle of the wheels. And readjust them to their original specifications. With the wheels aligned, you can enjoy a faster and smoother ride.

7. Keep It Clean

Though you may not think it, general cleanliness and maintenance are crucial to car performance. While this is unlike other car enhancements, by keeping your car clean, you will not have to worry about rusted parts. You will also reduce the risk of part failure and malfunction. Moreover, it is just common sense that clean parts run and perform better.

There are numerous ways to keep your car clean, but among the most efficient is power washing. A power washing machine that uses a high-pressure hose delivers a strong water stream. With this machine, you can do an excellent job removing and breaking up dirt buildup. For example, caked mud, tree sap, road grime, bugs, bird droppings, etc.

Power wash your car by lathering it well with a mild detergent and then spraying it clean. This method will remove all the surface dirt while preserving your clear coat. Various power washing companies have different machines you can choose from for domestic use. Remember, you can use your pressure washer to clean your engine by blasting it with water.

You also need to wash the interior besides power washing. This step involves cleaning the center console and vacuuming the seats and floor mats. You may need professional assistance for this part.

Nothing feels better than having your muscle car perform optimistically. The speed is phenomenal, the power and handling are amazing, and the ride is generally exhilarating. But to achieve this, you will need to tweak a few things here and there, and above all, car enhancements are the ideal place to begin. Enhance your muscle car’s performance today to enjoy its full potential.

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