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Some of this week's Letters to AutoSpeed

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Starlet Slip-Up #1

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Re the recent Toyota Starlet GT article Super Star-let... The 4E-FTE engine is 1.3 litre - not 1.5 litre as stated.

Graham Anderson

Starlet Slip-Up #2

In the Super Star-let article (Super Star-let) you mention a “1.5 litre DOHC 4E-FTE engine”. The 4E-FTE engine is a 1.3 litre unit. Was this engine re-bored to 1.5 litre to squeeze 131kW from it? Not a wise idea – you’re better off doing an engine swap.

Sri Lanka

Well spotted. The engine is the factory 1.3 litre 4E-FTE. Article now fixed.

Speedo Corrector Will Work?

Do you know if the Speedo Corrector will work with the BMW/Mini Cooper?

Tony Wattwood

We can’t see any problems but you should first identify the road speed signal wire and take some multimeter measurements - as discussed in the book Performance Electronics for Cars (Book Review - Performance Electronics for Cars)

500 Times Better!

I just wanted to let you know that you guys are doing a top job with AutoSpeed. Excellent reference articles - it’s just great. About 500 times better than the magazines out there - at a fraction of the cost.

James Wade (One Happy Reader)

PC Control Vote #2

Re "PC Control of Kits?" (Response)... I think PC control of the kits would be a great idea. Sure, the maps are simple, but it would still be excellent to be able to view the entire map at once, or to display a few and be able to compare them at a glance. And just think of the potential of real-time logging and processing of the data... If Silicon Chip is willing to perform this development, it would certainly be a bonus to have the option of PC control.

Nick West

If there is enough demand it is possible that a PC interface will be introduced. However, there are no plans for this to occur.

Beefy Applause

I read your article on Daihatsu engines (Engine Epic - Daihatsu, Suzuki and Isuzu Engines) and was wondering if they made a 1.6 litre turbo engine? I have a Daihatsu Applause and I’m looking for something a bit beefy to dump in.


We aren’t aware of any Daihatsu 1.6 litre turbo engines. The most powerful 1.6 is the HD-EG (as fitted to the Japanese spec Charade DeTomaso). This engine develops 92kW.

Capri Capers

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I have read your article on the Ford Capri Club Sprint (Capri Eye Opener) and wonder is you can put me in contact with the owner. I have a Ford Capri and am looking to customise my XR2 Ford Capri Convertible (turbo). If you can help it would be appreciated.

Anne Beach
New Zealand

The car was modified by Damian at G-Tech Performance (contact via The owner is Damian’s cousin.

First Car Pursuit

I have contacted you before about buying a first car. As yet, I haven't been able to decide on something that is good looking and has a decent semi powerful engine. I also want a car that is about 1995 to 1998 and with a maximum price of about 10 grand. I have looked at the 1996 Ford Falcon EF XR6, 3.0 litre 1991-1992 Soarer and the 1992 Subaru sports wagon. I was wondering if you have any suggestions of a different car?


We assume a turbo car is out of the question as a first car. Check out the VQ30 powered Nissan Maxima (which was released with a manual gearbox), Nissan Bluebird SSS, Magna Sport, naturally aspirated Cefiro or Skyline, Ford TX5/Mazda 626/MX-6 V6, Calibra V6 and almost any early ‘90s Honda. There’s a fair range of vehicles there!

Looking for a Centre

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Re your article about replacement wheel centres (Custom Wheel Centre Rings)... Where did you get these made? I would like to get a set for my recently purchased Toyota Celsior and yours look perfect!

Brett Cashmore

The company responsible for those wheel centres is listed at the end of the article -

Monster Mini Conversion

I have enjoyed reading your 2004 series on Japanese engines. I am currently searching for a suitable engine for a conversion into my 1969 Mini. I know of many examples of G13Bs and 4E-FTEs being used. I was wondering what you think would be suitable as far as size and horsepower is concerned. I have been thinking about a 1NZ-FE with turbo, K3-VET and K3-EV2 in addition to the 4EFTE. I am aiming for a reliable and compact engine that will enable me to run a 13 second quarter mile (this has been done with a 4E-FTE conversion given minor tweaks).

Douglas Fimmell

The 4E-FTE and G13B conversions have one major advantage – they have already been done, so you should be able to obtain info and advice. But for something different... Check out the late-model Suzuki MA15 (from the Ignis Sport and current Swift) or MA16 (from the current Liana). The Toyota 1NZ-FE, K3-VET and K3-EV2 are also good choices. But for a 13 second pass, you’d need to do quite a lot of work to any of these engines. The 4E-GTE is probably the best platform to run that sort of time.

Thirstier Prius?

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I read with interest you articles on supercharging a Prius. I know that the focus was on improving on-road performance, but I was a little disappointed that there was so little mention of fuel consumption changes (if any) after the modifications were made. I would think that with the real improvements made to on-road performance, a same or minimal increase in fuel usage would be of great interest to everyone - from the motoring public to the auto manufacturers.

Do you have any comparative before and after fuel consumption figures?

Craig Dunn

The supercharger didn’t stay on the Prius long but in that time, fuel consumption remained very similar to standard. We don’t have any back-to-back comparative figures - but we will have for the upcoming turbo conversion!

Swifter Suzuki

I am currently driving a Suzuki Ignis Sports (Swift Sports) and it feels like there is some restriction. Do you have any recommendations or advice to improve power?


You might pick up some extra power by installing a free-flow exhaust and cold air intake together with altered engine management (perhaps an interceptor). We aren’t aware of any bolt-on upgrades – can any readers help?

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