MODDING MY 97 SAAB 900SE 2.0 TURBO 5-speed - The Saab Link Forums

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Performance Modifications for the NG900 / Old 9-3 This forum contains PERFORMANCE related Q&A's for the NG900 and 9-3. This may also include suspension.

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Old 05-27-2013, 05:29 AM   #1
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MODDING MY 97 SAAB 900SE 2.0 TURBO 5-speed

Ok I am very well versed in the European tuning game. My Volvo s70 t5 5-speed made 542whp and over 600ft lbs on built motor, trans with quaife LSD, 6-puck unsprung bullyclutch, Speedtuning ecu, HX35 turbo, 610cc RC injectors and many more mods. The car started off with a Mitsubishi stock unit. TD04HL-16T, then I put a 19t on it, then I went with a Hahn race craft 20G, them Hx35. It seems these saabs can bolt on alot of Volvo parts!

SO TO START...

1) What can the stock 2.0 motor handle power wise?

2) How does the 5-speed trans and clutch hold up to more power and abuse

3) How good is stock fueling and at what HP level will I need to upgrade?

My ideas below STAGE 1 FREE MODS

1) I have an extra HX35 and 19T laying around, so car will receive one or other

2) I have a set of green giant injectors from Volvo s60R will plug n play (465cc)

3) Precision 24x12x3" IC

4) 3" downpipe need to know a company that makes them

5) Tune


How easy is it to make 300-350whp out of these cars

I appreciate all feedback
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Old 05-27-2013, 05:44 AM   #2
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Out of curiosity, how did you find answers to these types of questions for your Volvo?

Did you buy it already modded and/or did you work with a local tuner?



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Old 05-27-2013, 06:00 AM   #3
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Volvospeed.com for the most basic things, and then just working on them myself. I've owned 7 volvos, and can completely tear it down to a shell and rebuild again
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Old 05-27-2013, 06:02 AM   #4
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I bought my t5-5-speed completely stock then built it from the ground up myself, no shops in jersey will touch volvos for modifications apart from my buddy at maximum psi, mike tunes e36 m3's which run the same engine management as the volvos (bosch motronic 4.3, 4.4 and ME7
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Old 05-27-2013, 08:47 AM   #5
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youll need a better clutch for the power you hope to make. Alot of people tend to upgrade to a viggen clutch and convert the car over to a hydro set up at the same time. The motors can make stupid amounts of power without having to be built so 300-350 will be no issue.
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Old 05-27-2013, 09:28 AM   #6
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youll need a better clutch for the power you hope to make. Alot of people tend to upgrade to a viggen clutch and convert the car over to a hydro set up at the same time. The motors can make stupid amounts of power without having to be built so 300-350 will be no issue.
Ok good, the clutch was JUST replaced a 1000 miles ago
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Old 05-27-2013, 02:49 PM   #7
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Ok good, the clutch was JUST replaced a 1000 miles ago
At 300+hp that means you'll either be 1) Destroying a nearly new clutch and/or 2) Replacing a nearly new clutch.

Stock ng900 clutch is not up to that task.
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Old 05-27-2013, 05:04 PM   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 97saabturbo View Post
Ok I am very well versed in the European tuning game. My Volvo s70 t5 5-speed made 542whp and over 600ft lbs on built motor, trans with quaife LSD, 6-puck unsprung bullyclutch, Speedtuning ecu, HX35 turbo, 610cc RC injectors and many more mods. The car started off with a Mitsubishi stock unit. TD04HL-16T, then I put a 19t on it, then I went with a Hahn race craft 20G, them Hx35. It seems these saabs can bolt on alot of Volvo parts!

SO TO START...

1) What can the stock 2.0 motor handle power wise?
The B204 can reliably handle 400-450 whp on stock internals. Some folks have done 500+ whp on stock internals, but not sure how long those held up.

Quote:
2) How does the 5-speed trans and clutch hold up to more power and abuse
Transmission will reliably handle 400 wtq on stock gearset, but you'll need to upgrade the clutch. The Viggen pressure plate and disc can reliably handle that output if you don't drag race. You'll need to upgrade further for drag racing, either a 6-puck or better. Talk to John Z. Williams (jzw tuning) or Nick Taliaferro at GenuineSaab. I agree with converting to the hydraulic clutch. Saab used the cable clutch from 94-98 until realizing their stupid mistake...

Quote:
3) How good is stock fueling and at what HP level will I need to upgrade?
Stock fuel pump can handle 250-300 whp, but if the pump is original you might as well change it out. A Walbro 255 or Bosch 044 are common replacements as they can fit inside the stock pump assembly with only minor modification.

Quote:
My ideas below STAGE 1 FREE MODS

1) I have an extra HX35 and 19T laying around, so car will receive one or other

2) I have a set of green giant injectors from Volvo s60R will plug n play (465cc)

3) Precision 24x12x3" IC

4) 3" downpipe need to know a company that makes them

5) Tune


How easy is it to make 300-350whp out of these cars

I appreciate all feedback
Both turbos will get you to 300whp; the Holset is likely good for closer to 350.

Green giants are definitely enough fueling for the 19T (it's a common combo) but I'm not sure about the HX35.

The IC won't fit in the front without moving or removing the AC dryer. The width is perfect but the max height is about 8.25 inches from the bottom of the lower radiator crossmember up to the dryer.

Most good exhaust shows can fab up a matching DP, but you can get one at GenuineSaab. Other folks might have other options.

Limited tuning opportunities, but I'd recommend going to the T5 Suite page to get an idea about the Trionic system and then deciding whether you want to tune it yourself or let someone else do it. If you decide to do the latter, ask around the boards for recommendations.

Last edited by mike saunders; 05-27-2013 at 05:07 PM.
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Old 05-27-2013, 10:37 PM   #9
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Awesome I appreciate all the info! Volvospeed would tell me to put hids, an R bumper and call it a day lol.

Today I flushed the fluids, changed the plugs with NgKs, got it in the air and found the tierods have play luckily I have those in stock for $9 apiece made by febi (I'm a European parts supplier)

As far as switching to a hydraulic setup I completely agree, the difference between cable and hydraulic is night and day IMO both with clutch feel and smoothness.
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:53 AM   #10
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There isnt an saab tuners I know of in Jersey, (parents live there and have saabs) you might want to take a drive up to Mass and work something out with Mike D
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Old 05-28-2013, 09:50 AM   #11
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European parts supplier in NJ you say... Mode details please.

We have a fellow member that works at MaximumPSI as well. Is he one in the same as your friend?

Add to the list:
Viggen/Aero front brakes and 300mm Aero rear brakes as well to slow you down.
And some suspension bracing and bushings to keep you planted.
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Old 05-28-2013, 10:19 AM   #12
 
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Add to the list:
Viggen/Aero front brakes and 300mm Aero rear brakes as well to slow you down.
And some suspension bracing and bushings to keep you planted.
+1,000,000,000


Handling upgrades should come sooner than later. There are a couple of known faults (torque steer, seriously vague steering feel, excessive body roll) that can be corrected with some suspension mods.

Thicker rear anti-roll bar should be high on the list, as it's the best band-for-buck improvement. Urethane control arm bushings should be on the list, as well as a steering rack clamp and brace.

The existing brakes are adequate, but you'll appreciate the extra stopping power...
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Old 06-03-2013, 03:41 PM   #13
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+1 on recommending Mike D.

He is a saint when it comes to C900s and T5 Saabs. Even when I was bone stock with my NG900 on his Stage 2 road tune, it was still a blast. Once I have my TD04 15T installed along with a downpipe being made I definitely plan on using him again.
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:20 PM   #14
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I've *heard the extra 14mm of brake disc for the Aero rear swap is tough to quantify from the seat of the pants if the front has already been Viggen-ed. No way it could hurt, though...if anyone has a different opinion on this I'd love to hear it.


Maximum PSI is the Robin Hood of BMW turbo kits, to HPF's King John.
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Old 06-04-2013, 06:21 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bleedsblue View Post
I've *heard the extra 14mm of brake disc for the Aero rear swap is tough to quantify from the seat of the pants if the front has already been Viggen-ed. No way it could hurt, though...if anyone has a different opinion on this I'd love to hear it.


Maximum PSI is the Robin Hood of BMW turbo kits, to HPF's King John.
I recently did the 300mm rear upgrade after having the 308mm fronts on and I was surprised at how well the car sits under full breaking. It doesn't want to rake forward and more just squats. Inspires a lot more confidence in breaking heaving into a corner.
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:48 PM   #16
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I recently did the 300mm rear upgrade after having the 308mm fronts on and I was surprised at how well the car sits under full breaking. It doesn't want to rake forward and more just squats. Inspires a lot more confidence in breaking heaving into a corner.
Come to think of it my 9-3 w/ 308 fronts (stock rears) does rake forward a bit under heavy braking. Thanks for nothing, now you've helped me justify that $500 upgrade!
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Old 06-04-2013, 02:50 PM   #17
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Buy used. A few kits have been for sale for between $150 and $200 in the past few weeks.

Maybe dip will sell you his... https://www.saablink.net/forum/items-sale/69834.htm

Last edited by srp; 06-04-2013 at 02:54 PM.
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Old 06-04-2013, 03:19 PM   #18
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Come to think of it my 9-3 w/ 308 fronts (stock rears) does rake forward a bit under heavy braking. Thanks for nothing, now you've helped me justify that $500 upgrade!
Like SRP said, you can really piece together a set for not much. I think I spent ~300-350 piecing everything together (308 fronts/300 rears) but the rear stainless lines you need to go to a floating caliper in the back. Wait for a deal, they will be there for much less than 500. Then just replace when they wear out.
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:19 PM   #19
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These are the lines you will need for the conversion like Mark said: Custom Brake Lines RR 300mm Kit

And while you have the brake system open, you might as well add these: Performance Brake Line Kit NG900 94-98 9-3 99-02
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Old 06-06-2013, 12:42 PM   #20
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Thank you both for the links-I had only seen the GS full swap kit, so I wasn't sure if the used parts were also expensive due to high demand. I'll keep an eye out because my rear brakes are due soon anyway and that is always the best time to upgrade.

The stainless lines are on my list--even freshly bled the brakes on this car feel mushy compared to my other cars.
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