N54 WHP, Boost, longevity ?

SlowE93

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Does anyone know (not speculate), what a stock internal N54 can handle long term with proper fuel and tuning ? How much WHP ?
 

Cornfed54

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Feb 6, 2018
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I sold my last car, hybrid turbo 2008 e90 with 155k miles. It was right around 600whp for 26k miles of that. Compression and leakdown tests came back nearly perfect prior to selling. Just a data point, no facts/ proof.
It’s going to be hard to get the answer you are looking for because of so many factors. From what I’ve seen and personally experienced, I’m inclined to believe that 600whp is the “magic number” before you head into the “fingers crossed, SEND IT!” Category. Can stock motors make 800 whp, for sure, but will it break Easily the second some tuning parameter varies the slightest bit during a run?, it’s pretty likely at that level. I’m interested in hearing other opinions on this as well. One other thing I feel should be discussed is xxx whp on twins vs single. In general, single can make more power safely between greater efficiency, not as much torque low in the rpm band, and less heat overall in theory. IMO, a twin setup making 550-600lb-ft at 2,500 rpm is a more stressed motor than say, a single turbo car making 650 lb ft but doing it at 4k rpm.
 

Rob09msport

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Oct 28, 2017
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I would deff say fueling, allot run their cars to the max their fuel system can support which is dangerous if goes lean, and low end torque as bending rods is common but I would agree on 600 being magic number just not hp but tq and prob tuning so that stays 500 or below until 3500 I would think.
 

veer90

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Nov 16, 2016
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I talked to Josh (stock motor record holder 861 whp) when I was building my motor. Another data point but keep in mind this was a 60-something thousand mile long block in very good health and the guy gave zero fucks about blowing it up. lol
  • 6466 on full e85, 36.5 psi on the dyno and 38 psi on the street
  • 60-something-k mile long block lasted one year / 6,000 hard miles (road trips, racing, many highway pulls)
  • ultimately tossed the cyl 4 rod and scattered itself all over the highway (per Josh, most likely fuel leak caused bearing damage)
Obviously not recommended for everyone but if you have a motor in good health 800s is doable short term. Detuned to 6-700 the motor should last much longer.
 

MoreBoost

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Jul 27, 2017
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Running 550WHP daily for 25,000 miles. JB4, GC Turbos, port meth injection, down pipes, BEF, decated, stage 2 bucketless pump, aftermarket DVs, 7" FMIC.
Before the upgrade, running 475WHP on stockers daily for 50,000 miles.

These cars are solid if you look after them and replace weak parts. Notably Turbos, fuel pumps. My original HPFP has survived but I believe it's because I spray so much meth.
 

Twisted Tuning

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This is a bit of a loaded question, why? because there is a SERIOUS misconception on what an engine can handle and what it made on a dyno. Fact is, 30-40 highway pulls aint shit. or 10-20 dyno pulls. That equates to about 2% of an engines life. I literally detest when i see people say "N54 can handle 800whp". Thats a misnomer because any engine can make power for little while before it blows. The N54 is NOTHING special. Bottom of the barrel forged rod and H-pistons. Anyone who knows about engines knows H-pistons are not very strong. and also know powder/sinter forging is not the best or strongest forging process. However stronger than cast. It is not the forging type that everyone is used to seeing on Higher performance aftermarket options.

The N54 on stock internals should be left around no more than 600whp/wtq. Anything beyond that to about 850whp should have at a minimum upgraded pistons and rods and better bearings. Beyond that you start looking into closed decks and etc. This is for longevity. 500-550whp is really the safest power for reliability on stock internals.

Can take it with a grain of salt though. I'm just a guy. lol
 

Abacus38

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From what I've seen no more 700whp and keep the tq under 600 esp in the lower rpms.

This kind of dyno something that'll last for a decent time. If you're shooting for 700-850whp I say rod and pistons at least. 850whp-1000whp+ you're going to either need to closed the deck or sleeve the block on top of rods and pistons.
Ivan Dyno 19 May 18.jpg
 

SlowE93

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Thanks for all the responses fellas. Id like to stay around 600whp or so. Was curious if others have pushed beyond that and for how long. Im AT so dont intend on going over 600whp.
 

Stucks

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Nov 3, 2016
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Cant tell you how many peoples motors let go and then they say "i should have just left the car alone when it was making 600whp for X amount of miles" (myself included)

600whp is right around where you want to be for a stock motor. my car ran flawlessly for years at around 600whp. only when i turned it up did I have issues.
 
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Milan

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Dec 24, 2016
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The engine is a lot stronger than the "tuners" who ride the knock sensors while remote tuning will give it credit for. With that said, 600 whp is probably a good number for a lot of reason with the motor surviving being the bottom of the list.
 

SlowE93

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Cool, so 600 it is. I upgraded my fueling as I was at its limits at 580 whp. Car is healthier, more ethanol and timing is better now with fuel pressures with room to spare. I will target 1 more psi and thats as far as I want to go and should put me in the 590ish to low 600whp according to how my car has behaved on my previous dyno runs
 

fmorelli

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The problem with throwing a number around is it to complete misnomer for a lasting level of sustained performance. Strong fueling system, an ignition system that can keep up with having doubled what the car was built to do, someone who knows how to tune for endurance, and an owner that maintains the car and doesn't drive it like a neanderthal. It seems those are the longevity factors.

From what I see, people seem to lose wastegates and turbos long before anything else?

That said, I love to hear people's real world experiences, including their configuration.

Filippo
 

NoQuarter

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The problem with throwing a number around is it to complete misnomer for a lasting level of sustained performance. Strong fueling system, an ignition system that can keep up with having doubled what the car was built to do, someone who knows how to tune for endurance, and an owner that maintains the car and doesn't drive it like a neanderthal. It seems those are the longevity factors.

From what I see, people seem to lose wastegates and turbos long before anything else?

That said, I love to hear people's real world experiences, including their configuration.

Filippo


Wut?


knuckle dragger.jpg
 

SlowE93

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Jul 2, 2017
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The problem with throwing a number around is it to complete misnomer for a lasting level of sustained performance. Strong fueling system, an ignition system that can keep up with having doubled what the car was built to do, someone who knows how to tune for endurance, and an owner that maintains the car and doesn't drive it like a neanderthal. It seems those are the longevity factors.

From what I see, people seem to lose wastegates and turbos long before anything else?

That said, I love to hear people's real world experiences, including their configuration.

Filippo
Please refer to 1st post. Its not just a number.
 
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zmon1300

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Nov 3, 2016
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Chicagoland
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'10 335xi
Ive been 600awhp/600wtq for about ~1ish years now. Car actually is pretty reliable now that I have replaced/upgraded all the weak points.
PR ignition system
Pure stg2 HiFlow's
index 12 injectors
PR inlets
ADE 650 FMIC
95706 ngk plugs
NO UPGRADED OUTLETS
PR stg3+ LPFP
MMP Gen 1 PI (had to warranty injectors to get them to stop leaking)
Full e85 year round
27-28psi to achieve 600
Tuned by Ken @ WedgePerformance

I really think maintaince is key with a number at/over 600. You need to change oil every 2500-3000 miles with something high in zinc content aka Rotella, Motul, Torco etc. Make sure OFHG is taken care of. Make sure you address oil cooling and trans cooling(If 6at). Be on top of maintaince and it'll work out in your favor if you legitamently cover all points. Change EKPM every year. Small things like this add up in costs and ultimately that's what scares most of the crowd away. The reality is you are driving a 600+ hp car, its gonna need extra attention.

Z
 

N54QC

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Aug 17, 2017
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07 E90 335i
Ive been 600awhp/600wtq for about ~1ish years now. Car actually is pretty reliable now that I have replaced/upgraded all the weak points.
PR ignition system
Pure stg2 HiFlow's
index 12 injectors
PR inlets
ADE 650 FMIC
95706 ngk plugs
NO UPGRADED OUTLETS
PR stg3+ LPFP
MMP Gen 1 PI (had to warranty injectors to get them to stop leaking)
Full e85 year round
27-28psi to achieve 600
Tuned by Ken @ WedgePerformance

I really think maintaince is key with a number at/over 600. You need to change oil every 2500-3000 miles with something high in zinc content aka Rotella, Motul, Torco etc. Make sure OFHG is taken care of. Make sure you address oil cooling and trans cooling(If 6at). Be on top of maintaince and it'll work out in your favor if you legitamently cover all points. Change EKPM every year. Small things like this add up in costs and ultimately that's what scares most of the crowd away. The reality is you are driving a 600+ hp car, its gonna need extra attention.

Z
Sorry to side track this thread, was wondering @zmon1300 if you had a dyno sheet or if you were just ballparking by your current setup? Just being curious. That aside, I agree with just about everyone in this thread that 600whp is the sweet spot.