Cougar Tuning

"Easy Tiger!"

Ford needed to create a sporty coupe suitable for the practical considerations of a family. Their first effort was the Probe and the Couger styling was a radical step for Ford.

There were 2 engine choices, a 2.0 Zetec unit and a Duratec V6 2.5. Both engines respond well to tuning although the 2.5 V6 clearly has the upper hand when it comes to power. 

The handling on the Cougar is rather soft considering the sporty asiprations so suspension upgrades should be high up on your priority list.  A strut brace and anti roll bar will help to improve the cornering. If you are going to lower the car we would not lower the car by more than 30-35mm without getting the suspension geometry realigned.

Tuning tips and articles

Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums

Top end power should be your overall aim on the Cougar with a nice fat peak torque band. The engine has a nice wide power band and it would be a shame to compromise this. Putting the power down is also a challenge, especially when tuned so a Torque Sensing diff is a good option, and really allows faster cornering.

With just a few mods you can transform your Cougar into a fun car, beating larger cars on the track.

Smaller engines do not provide much of a return in terms of power so start with a bigger engine. Engine swaps are a good option if you have a small engine size.

EngineTuning modifications.

Your aim when tuning should be a nice flat torque curve and a wide power band. One of the best mechanical mods you can do is to fit a fast road cam.

Don't forget to uprate the fuelling when you are increasing the power - it makes the car more thirsty. You can get a more snappy acceleration by fitting a fuel pressure boost valve but power will remain unchanged. Uprating the injectors is another beneficial modification and will deliver sufficient fuel. Uprate the fuel pump to cope with the extra fuel requirements of your tuned Cougars uprated injectors.

The following mods are usually carried out by our members, decide how far you want to go before you begin.

Stage 1 mods: Exhaust, Panel air filter, Remap, lighter flywheel

Stage 2 mods: Fast road cam, ported and polished head, fuel injector & fuel pump upgrades, 

Stage 3 mods: Engine balancing, forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Internal engine upgrades (pistons/head/valves), competition cam.

Intake and Exhaust Tuning.

The next area for modification is the intake and exhaust. You need to unrestrict the airflow into the engine as much as possible and a cotton panel air filter will help this. Sports exhausts balance the flow of air throughout the engine. But if your exhaust is too large, ie it is over 2.5 inches bore, you will lose a lot of the flow rate and lose power.

Gas flowing the head will allow you to maximise your air/fuel charge and is probably, after a camshaft the best performance mod you can do. Leave this to a professional though with a proper flow bench and machine tools Your clutch can seriously let you down if it starts to slip and the standard clutches are only ever good for power gains of upto 50%. Fit an uprated clutch to avoid power losses through the transmission. NASP engines do not achieve big power gains if you remap them, unless you have done extensive modifications. A remap on the 2.5 V6 will yield a gain of a round 10-14bhp, whilst not much it really helps smooth out the flat spots and gives a lot more power across the rev range.

Wheel modifications.

Because alloy wheels are lighter they improve performance and they help to cool the brake disks. It is worth noting that although they can look cool on the Cougar Big alloy wheels will actually decrease your performance. The larger you go the lower your acceleration will be - this is due to the change in your effective final drive ratio. Aim to keep the overall rolling diameter of the wheel the same as supplied from the factory. In all cases we do not recommend going above 17 inches.

For more information on Tuning your car please join us in our friendly forum where you can discuss Cougar options in more detail with our Cougar owners. It would also be worth reading our unbiased Ford tuning articles to get a full grasp of the benefits and drawbacks of each modification.

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