What does it take to install a front mounted intercooler? Is the Precision product worth $310 + your labor? What else do you need? MVS Volvo Forums member Auburn T5 answers all these questions, and provides photos of his install.
First thing I noticed was the increase in power in the mid range. It feels like it pulls harder in the mid range RPM’s and lag isn’t nearly as apparent. It spools into boost much quicker now. that jump in 2nd and 3rd gear from 5 to 10 psi is nearly instantaneous where as before I could watch it slowly creep up to 10~12.
At the moment, I’m still using that plumbing attachment. It holds but barely. I’m going to pick up the reducer hose this afternoon becuase the rubber is heating up and getting spongy and the boost is pushing it off the TB no matter how tight that clamp is on there. I stripped one clamp trying to get it nice and tight so it looks like the heat is causing it to get mushy and the boost is pushing it off. Watching the boost gauge, It will jump up quickly to 12psi and then just as quickly slump back down to 10 and hold steady at 10.
I’m not sure if it’s just spiking to 12 or if the slipping hose at the throttle body is preventing it from staying at 12. The rest of the clamps are all extremely tight so I’m 99% confident that they’re not leaking.
So, anyways, that’s about it. It’s definitely something I’m glad I took the time to do as unpleasant as that hot piping was to figure out, hopefully I’ve shed enough light on the situation that you guys wanting to do this will have a bit more info to help you out than I had. I’m not sure if the ME7 guys can use all this or not but hopefully at least some of it will help.
I didn’t have to cut the frame or bumper or anything like that to get the IC to fit or to get the bumper to fit back on. Whether or not you’ll have to or not, I’m not sure. If you use the same IC or one with similar dimensions, you shouldn’t have to. The precision IC’s are top quality and although they look small, I’ve talked with several guys who are gurus on turbo applications and they say the precision units are top quality and will greatly outperform the cheap Ebay IC’s. Whether or not it will matter at the low HP most of us make or not, I’m not sure but one of the guys at the shop I did the work at has a beast civic that puts down over 500 whp. He originally had an ebay intercooler and switched to a precision IC that was a little smaller and made an extra 60 hp.
The piping, couplers, Tbolt clamps, reducers, etc totals $180 and no shipping since it’s local.. ebay kits are like an extra $40 shipping. The IC was $230 with free shipping from nolimit so just a hair over $400 in parts.
I was close to getting a treadstone intercooler and while they claim to support more power for the money, the Precision IC’s have a much higher quality from what I’ve been told and are better engineered. Besides, I don’t plan on making over 350 whp any time soon anyways so this will do well… and when I do an engine build, the wife’s T5 will get my IC setup.
I’m super stoked about this. Heatsoak is absolutely atrocious down here in Alabama. My car gets like an extra 20 hp it seems when it’s cooler out. Piss poor factory IC flow and little to no actually cooling probably doesn’t help either