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Racing a Diesel Cruze

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Hey all been driving my 2014 diesel cruze for a while now. Been ghosting cruzetalk.com for the same amount of time and figured why not get into the community more.
Don't need the cruze as a daily driver any more, and have decided to go back into the track world 13 years later. With just the basic dpf delete and programming from fleece, the low end get go is pretty decent. I am getting the car ready for a track day at VIR in oct. It's always fun to put almost a stock commuter on track with cars that are supposed to be there..lol. I remember quite a few "commuter" cars dampening the ego of others. I have been out of the mix so long I am just going to start at the bottom of the HPDE ladder and go from there.
My intentions from this outing in october are to get a feel for where to go next with the modifications.
I think this car may be decent as it has basic get go and the parts are cheap.. I used to drive a 3000gt Vr4.. soooo. I am always pleasantly suprised at how cheap parts can be for the cruze.

I am also considering getting a second of these to turn into a dedicated track car. Due to having the experience of being a former mechanic and still a machinist wanna be, I may even go as far as serious engine work and possibly a better or twin turbo setup to keep the lag at min while giving higher top end.


If others are interested you are more that welcome to join me at VIR OCT 3-4. the event is put on by NASA. (national auto sport association-.. not the space one.) I believe there are still openings in the HPDE fields. From past experience beginners see huge increase even in their daily driving confidence and safety.

Company and advice are welcome and much appreciated.
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2014 Cruze Diesel, 2007 Cobalt, 1981 Camaro Z28, 2017 Volt
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Yah I know the emission isn’t equal but I feel diesel is way more stringent on their emissions as a whole. Vs gas is. I don’t see any gasoline engines being reduced speed
Oh, wholly agree there.

My Cobalt has a perpetual rear O2 sensor code (I have a high-flow cat, but it doesn't "see" that it's there) and I can do whatever I please.

But God forbid the Cruze have a sensor go bad. Car is operating fine, sensor is just reading incorrectly...better limit my speed to do...what?
 

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I know... im slacking I am going to the dyno soon gotta see what I can do with my new project and I will see what the new turbo does... it definitely has more top end even without tuning.. Oh and I have to put a new cv/axle in as it decided it didn't like summit point last saturday.... easy fix... cheap part.....nobody had one till monday.... sigh..
I haven't really looked into it much but the only difference is in the intake side... can't these be mixed and matched? and then change the cartridge?
What you can do is install a billet wheel on the cold side. Hot side won't work with billet wheel for some or other reason. You can change the core to a higher spec one as long as you can still bolt your wheel housings to it. One of two ways to go, install n better core or even ballbearing core, you'll be seeing boost as soon as you put your foot down from the line and you'll never break it, upgrading the turbo core with one that has a thicker shaft is normally wat we do in our lovely southern part of africa. Then you can also install bigger wheels on hot and cold side, turbo will need less rpms to produce the same amount of boost, that equals a turbo that can handle more boost or the same amount just more reliably. Quite simple really
 

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Looking **** hot at an angle like that. No body roll FTW.
 

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Discussion Starter · #148 ·
Hyperfest coming up down a VIR oct 2-3. The grids are full but they have all kinds of stuff to do. Ride-alongs in regular cars and drift cars and off road too.. I think there are even helicopter rides and power wheel racing.. Tons of fun... If anybody makes it look me up car 803... cruze or bmw.. not sure which one yet.. sorting out some stuff on both.

 

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Discussion Starter · #149 ·
Hyper-fest was awesome... tons of fun the next one is in may so if you can get to VIR you need to come out.

Moved to HPDE 2 ... so I guess I don't have anymore excuses for driving like a total newbie...lol

Time for VIR is now down to 2:39.. top speed is 119.. both those are because I am finding better lines.... next is getting the nerves up to go faster in some places I am letting up on the throttle that I know I can go way faster in.

Tire Wheel Vehicle Sky Car

Wheel Car Vehicle Tire Automotive tire
 

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shimmy816 at any point did you install a front and rear strut bar? I’m thinking about it to combo with the coil overs and rear sway bar.
 

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Discussion Starter · #151 ·
I actually met another Cruze driver at VIR in oct. He had a custom front brace... lets just say he had alot of time on his hands.
I don't have any bracing at all. No sway bar either. I'm sure if I installed all of them it would cut times, but for now I found with the coil overs and tire pressure changes the car is almost neutral when it comes to under/over steer. Oddly enough I learned some tips on adjustments from a team that was racing a Honda Oddesy. Not my picture but this is the same guys from the track..funny but they are in same class as miatas.



Wheel Car Tire Vehicle Hood
 

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I actually met another Cruze driver at VIR in oct. He had a custom front brace... lets just say he had alot of time on his hands.
I don't have any bracing at all. No sway bar either. I'm sure if I installed all of them it would cut times, but for now I found with the coil overs and tire pressure changes the car is almost neutral when it comes to under/over steer. Oddly enough I learned some tips on adjustments from a team that was racing a Honda Oddesy. Not my picture but this is the same guys from the track..funny but they are in same class as miatas.



View attachment 294926
if you do ever get the rear sway bar or any strut bars let us know. I know they supposedly make a big effect when pushing hard in corners. Not so much on daily use, strut bars do look cool too lol
 

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if you do ever get the rear sway bar or any strut bars let us know. I know they supposedly make a big effect when pushing hard in corners. Not so much on daily use, strut bars do look cool too lol
I'd expect the rear swaybar to make a big impact on daily driving if you have any number of roundabouts - it was certainly night and day on my Cobalt for that, but especially for AutoX...it just makes the most impact (at least with as big of a bar as I have) if you have a lot of grip up front.

The rear lower chassis bar (UR) did make a small but noticeable improvement, especially considering the price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #154 ·
I have the front sway bar but never put it in as apparently you have to drop the sub frame.. I may do it someday. my garage is tied up with my other track car. we think it jumped timing wouldn't even start on liquid glow plug. I am in process of pulling it and will probably rebuild whole engine depending on what we find.
 

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I'd expect the rear swaybar to make a big impact on daily driving if you have any number of roundabouts - it was certainly night and day on my Cobalt for that, but especially for AutoX...it just makes the most impact (at least with as big of a bar as I have) if you have a lot of grip up front.

The rear lower chassis bar (UR) did make a small but noticeable improvement, especially considering the price.
Yah I’m sure the rear sway would be a huge difference. But I’d love to hear how coil overs no sway would feel vs sway-coils-and strut bars. I have the coils and sway bar rear, Would the strut bars be worth the $$
 

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The Bilstein B12 Pro kit and Whiteline rear sway bar made my car oversteer with the stock 215/55R17 V-rated tires and wheels. Now with 225/50R18 Z-rated no oversteer. I’m running -1.5 deg camber on all 4 corners for fender/tire clearance as well.

When are we gonna see a dyno sheet with the X-MAN hybrid turbo?

I actually met another Cruze driver at VIR in oct. He had a custom front brace... lets just say he had alot of time on his hands.
I don't have any bracing at all. No sway bar either. I'm sure if I installed all of them it would cut times, but for now I found with the coil overs and tire pressure changes the car is almost neutral when it comes to under/over steer. Oddly enough I learned some tips on adjustments from a team that was racing a Honda Oddesy. Not my picture but this is the same guys from the track..funny but they are in same class as miatas.



View attachment 294926
 

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The Bilstein B12 Pro kit and Whiteline rear sway bar made my car oversteer with the stock 215/55R17 V-rated tires and wheels. Now with 225/50R18 Z-rated no oversteer. I’m running -1.5 deg camber on all 4 corners for fender/tire clearance as well.

When are we gonna see a dyno sheet with the X-MAN hybrid turbo?
I got the B14 kit and rear sway ready to go. I got BFG sport comp 2 AS. Hopefully the car will be neutral/little oversteer. I am tired of plow and got to get that rear end to rotate a bit.
 

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I got the B14 kit and rear sway ready to go. I got BFG sport comp 2 AS. Hopefully the car will be neutral/little oversteer. I am tired of plow and got to get that rear end to rotate a bit.
It won’t react like you expect. It was abrupt oversteer not gradual. In my case the stability control would take over when the rear would start moving. It was scary.

I have Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+ on it now and it’s planted. I’ve never seen the SC come on since the wheel and tire upgrade.

Whiteline also makes poly bushings for the front control arms. I recommend you buy the ones that come with new arms as it is a PITA to remove the OE bushings. Replacing the plastic front sway bar links with new steel units from MOOG, Proforge or Mevotech is also something worth doing while your down there. Mevotech also makes camber bolts for the front struts.

I never tried driving with the stability control turned off. I think that would be a bad idea and probably wouldn’t try it if I were you.
 

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It won’t react like you expect. It was abrupt oversteer not gradual. In my case the stability control would take over when the rear would start moving. It was scary.

I have Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+ on it now and it’s planted. I’ve never seen the SC come on since the wheel and tire upgrade.

Whiteline also makes poly bushings for the front control arms. I recommend you buy the ones that come with new arms as it is a PITA to remove the OE bushings. Replacing the plastic front sway bar links with new steel units from MOOG, Proforge or Mevotech is also something worth doing while your down there. Mevotech also makes camber bolts for the front struts.

I never tried driving with the stability control turned off. I think that would be a bad idea and probably wouldn’t try it if I were you.
I drive 100% of the time with SC and TC off. The car chassis even stock handles really well with good tires. Unfortunately the throttle is so **** slow to respond that it’s a challenge unless you anticipate it’s lag. Hoping the trifecta tune helps negate some artificial computer throttle lag.
 

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I drive 100% of the time with SC and TC off. The car chassis even stock handles really well with good tires. Unfortunately the throttle is so **** slow to respond that it’s a challenge unless you anticipate it’s lag. Hoping the trifecta tune helps negate some artificial computer throttle lag.
Wow that’s crazy. Good luck with that. I had VW TDIs before the Cruze and I thought they were more nimble and tight, especially the MKV Jetta with multilink rear end. This 2014 Cruze stock reminded my of driving a turbo diesel Buick sedan.

I read the throttle response with the Trifecta tune isn’t linear. I got the OZ tune, it’s mostly midrange power 2000-3500 rpm. The torque feels the same at 70% vs 100% throttle but at full throttle it revs higher and shifts at 4500.

You shouldn’t brake or accelerate in a hard turn, it reduces your dynamic grip.
 
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