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Oct 18, 2011
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Get Down
ID Motorsports picks up power with a high-flow downpipe and a hotter tune
By Steve Turner
Photos courtesy of ID Motorsports

When we last left ID Motorsports’ 2016 Focus RS project, the hot hatch had picked up over 30 horsepower and 46 lb-ft of torque courtesy of a custom tune and a Mountune cold-air intake. Since then, the company has opened up the exhaust and dialed in a more aggressive calibration with SCT Performance hardware and software.

“We were happy with our initial results, but we always want more,” Matt Alderman of ID Motorsports explained. “So we started doing a ‘hot’ version of our Stage 1. Now we didn’t do the big torque spike as we found a serious drop in fuel pressure. So we decided to flatten out the horsepower at the end and carry it out.”

After refining the calibration, it was time to start reducing the exhaust backpressure to allow the turbocharged engine to produce power more efficiently. To do so, the company tracked down a high-flow downpipe that frees up the exhaust right behind the turbo.

“We found safe gains and have some options for customers that want a little wake up and the ones that want more,” Matt said. “We next went into Stage 2 with a downpipe (PN SFDC082; $319.99). At the time the only one we could find was on FocusRSShop.com and it was made by Scorpion.”

“With that done we hit the dyno,” he added. “As you can see from the dyno chart we found some more power left. As I mentioned we had to watch fuel pressure to keep it safe. This is why we are keeping power where we have it. We have had higher gains but feel it could cause for unsafe conditions for our customers.”

With a safe calibration dialed in by Matt using SCT Performance hardware and softwer, the 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine put down over 351 horsepower and 412 lb-ft of torque at the wheels. Those are impressive numbers and thanks to the hot hatch’s all-wheel-drive system, the car can put those numbers to good use.

“After our dyno work we drove it and this little car hauls,” Matt added. “But we can’t just do pulls on the street. We wanted to test a launch. You can see in the video it has no trouble getting off the line…”

[video=youtube;JUQi_UxArtI]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v= JUQi_UxArtI[/video]

With just some tuning and a couple bolt-ons the ID Motorsports Focus RS is already making some impressive power. It should be interesting to see how much more power is on the table with bolt-ons before the fuel system must be addressed.


Since we last check in on ID Motorsports’ 2016 Focus RS project car it gained a hotter tune and a high-flow Scorpion downpipe. These latest updates boosted the hot hatch’s performance by over 28 horsepower and 31 lb-ft of torque over the base ID 93-octane tune.


Here is a comparison of the stock downpipe (left) and the Scorpion 3-inch downpipe (PN SFDC082; $319.99), which is said to reduce exhaust gas temperatures and hasten the spooling of the factory turbo.


Moving underneath the RS the ID team learned just how tight things are down there. The Downpipe can be swapped out, but it will require some patience.


With the stock pipe out of the way, you can see just how intimate things are under the RS. According to the ID team, the best course of action is to use a ratchet and extension on the top bolt from above first. Then you can loosen the lower bolt from underneath.


After swapping the factory oxygen sensor to the new downpipe, you can snake it into place and bolt it up to the turbo and the factory cat-back exhaust. Of course opening up the exhaust like this will necessitate a new calibration to ensure the PCM can work with the free-flowing pipe.


With a hotter calibration in the PCM, the ID RS generated peak-to-peak gains of 18.29 horsepower and 3.85 lb-ft of torque. Adding the Scorpion downpipe boosted those numbers by another 10.42 horsepower and 27.23 lb-ft of torque.


When we can, we like to examine a sampling of the dyno data in 100-rpm increments. This allows for illustrating those under-the-curve gains that might not be so apparent on the graph. As you can see, the hotter tune pulls harder at the top of the tach, while the downpipe and complementary tune deliver meaty gains in the midrange.

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