Beginner car mods

Hello I just got my first car and I was wanting to do some mods and work on it. I have a 2017 2.0L camaro and I’d like to know some easy mods to start with to either give it more power or just make it look unique

Before doing any modifications make sure all maintenance is up to date. You car is nearly six years old. Brake and transmission fluids may never have been changed, often ignored by previous owners. Coolant service is likely needed.
Easy things to do, oil&filter change. You will need either jackstands or ramps for that.
Air filters, engine, and if equipped, cabin air filter.
For appearance items, just Google Camaro body kits, will get you to a lot of suppliers.

Check with your local Community ( State, Junior, whatever your state calls it) college, or adult education school for automotive classes. Good sources of knowledge and you may be able to work on your car in their facility while enrolled.

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Once maintenance is up to date, I’d forget about power, it’s already putting out a lot of hp/liter, not much to be gained there. Handling might be improved - what make/model/size tires are on it?

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The military base where I live has lifts and I planned on using those mostly but I do plan on checking out the stuff you mentioned. Thank you:)

I got the bigger option for my wheels which is 8.5x20

Unfortunately, larger wheel/tire combinations tend to be heavier, which reduces acceleration and increases stopping distance a little bit. But as long as the overall diameter is the same as original, the effects should be very small.

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If you haven’t figured it out by now, this isn’t exactly the best forum to ask this question. Not so performance oriented.

Since you have a turbo 4, a “tune” that increases the boost is an easy first performance step. Basically a computer calibration file that is downloaed to your car’s engine computer that raises the turbo boost. You should be able to get a good power boost without needing a parts change.

You might consider vinyl stripes or trim strips to personalize your car.

It is a Camaro so there are a ton of performance and appearance products available. Just do an internet search for “Camaro Performance Parts”

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I second the tune for the turbo car. Biggest bang for the buck performance mod you can make. Browse or join a Camaro forum to see what tuners are preferred and can tune without sacrificing reliability.

For looks, maybe change to some sportier wheels. Not necessarily larger, but more performance looking.

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I’d want to do the tune at a shop with a dyno, with someone who knows what they’re doing making the changes.

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As a follow on, @FunkyPete, does your base have a dyno? Worth asking, and you might find fellow soldiers with more knowledge that can help you.

That would be ideal. But, the “canned tunes” from five star, sct, and some others would be a good power increase and relatively conservative if no dyno is available.

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There’s a topic under the 2.0 section basically asking which mods for a beginner, ZZ Performance keeps being mentioned for a tune among other items.
Top 3 Beginner mods discussion

Here’s a key question - what’s your budget?

Burt what make/model/size tire? They can make a lot of difference/

Cool wheels are an easy start!

Base Auto Shops are nice if you can get a bay. On the few occasions I used them, the getting the correct bay was difficult due to the popularity of the shop.

Not all of us are anti-mod. :wink:

OP I’d start with brakes. Replace the pads with Porterfield R4-S or Hawks. Any time you start making a car more powerful, your first step should be to make it stop better.

And going forward, research everything you put on the car before you buy. There are plenty of “performance parts” out there that are snake oil.


I’m cautious on telling a new driver/new owner to pump up the boost on their new car. 300+ hp out of 2 L is a lot for a newbie to deal with, no telling how they’ll know if a problem exists.

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This article on wheel weight was an eye-opener for me. I avoided the expense and the performance downgrades that come along with it, and have been free of wheel envy for many years now:

“Understanding Wheel Weight” in the book Honda/Acura Performance

One word: Pinstripes

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