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2014 Chevy Cruze LT
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I’m about to pay off my 2014 Chevy Cruze 1.4 turbo auto trans and wanna turn it into a project car. I do plan on getting another car for the daily driver but that’s another story.

Right now, it’s sitting at 171,000 miles, I’m plagued with the dreaded p0299 code and am experiencing power loss after driving for a while. Shutting the car off for 5 minutes temporarily fixes the power loss issue and the code goes away every once in a while but comes back on a day later. My AC doesn’t work (yes… I’m suffering even with the windows down in this heat), and my transmission might need a new clutch pack (the dealer wasn’t sure when the last transmission oil change was done).

My biggest question is if it’s worth holding on to with those issues, and, if I get those issues fixed, how much actual horsepower can I get from that 1.4 block?
I planned on keeping the car but if it’s not feasible, I’d rather know now than sink money into it just for issues to spring up so close together.
 

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In my OPINION, a CRUZE was never designed to be a "performance" vehicle. Research some of the posts here and you will find a multitude of performance modifications = a damaged car....including TWO engine replacements....then saying it's the cars' fault.. There was a "performance" CRUZE made in Australia. (At least I think it was a CRUZE) that did very well, but are no longer made. Of course, it can be lots of fun to fiddle with a car. But be prepared to pay the price. Again....my OPINIONS.
 

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2014 LT program car, Pull Me Over Red, 1.4T Auto
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I’m about to pay off my 2014 Chevy Cruze 1.4 turbo auto trans and wanna turn it into a project car. I do plan on getting another car for the daily driver but that’s another story.

Right now, it’s sitting at 171,000 miles, I’m plagued with the dreaded p0299 code and am experiencing power loss after driving for a while. Shutting the car off for 5 minutes temporarily fixes the power loss issue and the code goes away every once in a while but comes back on a day later. My AC doesn’t work (yes… I’m suffering even with the windows down in this heat), and my transmission might need a new clutch pack (the dealer wasn’t sure when the last transmission oil change was done).

My biggest question is if it’s worth holding on to with those issues, and, if I get those issues fixed, how much actual horsepower can I get from that 1.4 block?
I planned on keeping the car but if it’s not feasible, I’d rather know now than sink money into it just for issues to spring up so close together.
Buy a fix kit ~ about $75 IIRC and that will probably take care of the p0299 among other things. If you are making this a project car, there is a posi third member from ZZP and upgraded clutch and flywheel opins all over. If you pay attention to what you are doing and don't over tax anything, you can have a pretty zippy and strong car. If you don't you will have issues as jimmyc is alluding to.
 

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2014 Cruze Diesel, 2007 Cobalt, 1981 Camaro Z28, 2017 Volt
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@JLL 's should be pretty spicy - but he's also put a considerable amount of time/money/effort into making sure the engine (and other things like the cooling system) can handle it.
 

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The Nuclear Option
2015 Chevrolet Cruze LT 1.4L Turbo
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@JLL 's should be pretty spicy - but he's also put a considerable amount of time/money/effort into making sure the engine (and other things like the cooling system) can handle it.
Just finished it today! Just gotta clean all the tools out of the car before I test drive it. Overall it's taken about 18 months and I stopped counting at $10K.
 

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The Nuclear Option
2015 Chevrolet Cruze LT 1.4L Turbo
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Well, it's a good thing I'm not trying to push it THAT far LOL. I've seen a few posts and people say you can get it to about 200 HP with no issues if you're careful with what you're adding to it!
You can almost achieve 200 HP at the crankshaft with just a good tune and a downpipe.
 

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2014 Chevy Cruze LT
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
lol dude...I thought you were a player with that "what can the block take" talk. You want a slightly modded DD.
LOL No sir. I just figured the stock block alone wouldn't be able to handle too much power without either overheating or sending a rod into orbit! I do want SOME power but i'm not trying to challenge everyone at a red light LOL.
 

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I remember reading with Trifecta, when they had it pushed to about 200HP they found the turbocharger was maxed out and fuel injectors were over like 95% duty cycle, they figured to leave some margin stock safe tune would be about 190HP. ("Safe" meaning it wouldn't immediately detonate, I have no idea what the longevity would be. I suppose it depends on how much you actually used that extra HP & torque.) Also read although rated at 135HP, the rating was done on regular (since that's what the Chevy manual says to use), apparently if you run premium that gains you +15HP on it's own. (I can tell you it also improves the low end torque.)

Iowa has cheap E85 and mine LOVES that. It sets a code if you get the mix in the tank above about E50 related to the mixture at engine startup, but doesn't give me any "hard starts" or the like until it's below about 20 degrees. (Found that out when it unexpectedly dropped from the 50s to like 0 degrees last winter -- it still started but it took about 3 tries cranking it over for it to fire off.) About 20-40 it cranks for about an extra second but fires right off. I was a bit surprised on the first unexpected cold snap that it behaved that well (I was concerned it wouldn't start at all as soon as it didn't immediately fire off...), since from what I've read the actually labelled flex fuel vehicles don't fair any better below about 50 degrees despite presumably having a full ethanol tune in them.
 

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2016 Chevy Cruze Limited LT 1.4T
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I remember reading with Trifecta, when they had it pushed to about 200HP they found the turbocharger was maxed out and fuel injectors were over like 95% duty cycle, they figured to leave some margin stock safe tune would be about 190HP. ("Safe" meaning it wouldn't immediately detonate, I have no idea what the longevity would be. I suppose it depends on how much you actually used that extra HP & torque.) Also read although rated at 135HP, the rating was done on regular (since that's what the Chevy manual says to use), apparently if you run premium that gains you +15HP on it's own. (I can tell you it also improves the low end torque.)

Iowa has cheap E85 and mine LOVES that. It sets a code if you get the mix in the tank above about E50 related to the mixture at engine startup, but doesn't give me any "hard starts" or the like until it's below about 20 degrees. (Found that out when it unexpectedly dropped from the 50s to like 0 degrees last winter -- it still started but it took about 3 tries cranking it over for it to fire off.) About 20-40 it cranks for about an extra second but fires right off. I was a bit surprised on the first unexpected cold snap that it behaved that well (I was concerned it wouldn't start at all as soon as it didn't immediately fire off...), since from what I've read the actually labelled flex fuel vehicles don't fair any better below about 50 degrees despite presumably having a full ethanol tune in them.
15 horsepower from 93 octane switch only? I want to agree with you but **** thats a lot!?!?I know in a old 2015 Chevy impala LTZ limited i had, if I put in 87 vs E85 (Flex fuel) it ran like a old dog vs a bat out of hell, didn’t think Chevy would be so generous to the Cruze too as their grandpa “sleeper”
 

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I haven't verified it on a dyno or anything; wouldn't be surprised if that weren't accurate though, there's no direct injection or anything on there (which was a surprise, I assumed any turbo car without DI required premium...); so I suppose it must pull a fair amount of boost and timing on 87. I've noticed on mine (in 90 degree temps) if it's got premium in it, it'll still shift at about 2000-2500RPM and hit the next gear at like 1400RPM or so, if I have 87 in there it probably raises those shift points by at least 500 RPM to avoid the big ol' bog at lower RPM.
 

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Also wanted to add, if I were to make any mods I think the first thing I would do is an aftermarket intercooler. If the intercooler hits like 160 degrees the computer will give you no boost, I had that happen when the outside temps on the road I was on got up above 110 degrees (35MPH speed limit towards town, 45MPH limit further out, with long, mistimed stoplights every block or two along it. Nice.) And, of course, before it cuts all boost you probably get some timing and boost pulled as the air intake temps go up. The aftermarket intercoolers apparently don't work miracles but they drop the temps about 10 degrees.
 
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