After a month of meeting with new and old friends at SEMA, cooling issues with performance vehicles have been at the front of my mind. I finally have the time to sit down and write out my observations about cooling in the high-performance industry. This is what I’ve experienced since we started our high-performance division five years ago, which was reinforced again after talking with so many industry veterans.
Whatever Happened to proper cooling?
We all read the magazines, watch the youtube videos, see the dyno results, and check out the blogs for these incredibly well-built cars and crazy engine bays. Conventional thinking in the high-performance world is that every item under the hood has to be upgraded to something beefy and shiny. From my experience, if it’s a high-end build for high power, reliability, drivability, and performance, then quality parts are more important than a fancy coat of paint. Sometimes you come across what I like to call the “All Show – No Go” builds. You can tell these vehicles from a mile away. Generally, the owner has decided to throw in cheap parts from an eBay store, have it highly polished, stance it, and hope for the best.
Performance Cooling to push limits
The most significant difference I see in the high-performance world between high-level tuners and racecar builders versus street builders is the importance and placement of proper cooling in the vehicle and build process. Top-level tuners such as GMG Racing, D3 Cadillac, and VF Engineering are working with CSF to solve cooling issues and develop new products. These teams understand the importance of proper cooling and the fundamentals of a high-performance vehicle; After all, if it’s not appropriately cooled, how can it ever be expected to operate at maximum output for a prolonged period under the most extreme driving conditions? High-level companies and tuners build their cars for the track, not the parking lot.
Performance Cooling Serves a Purpose
Street racing guys often ask me when discussing cooling, “How much horsepower is it going to add?” This is the SMH moment the frustrates me as I’m continuously informing enthusiast that it’s not going to add any horsepower! Instead, it’s going to protect your investment and allow you to use the full potential of your engine. People in the high-performance world will spend thousands of dollars on upgraded components, but when it comes to proper cooling, they’ll cheap out at the very end of their build with a $200 radiator they bought on eBay from a knock-off company. Not all radiators are created equally.
Ask any Mitsubishi Evo owner about the tragedy of melting their engine due to the lack of proper cooling, or a time attack driver who had to pull off their session at Button Willow (CA) in 110-degree weather in the middle of June. Undoubtedly, they regret forgoing to install a proper cooling system. If you like to ride the limit or push right through it, you must outfit your vehicle with the best cooling products from CSF.
We’ll continue to make the best cooling products in the world, and the best and most knowledgeable will continue to reap the benefits.