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Araley 02-04-2013 11:46 AM

$1000 to spend on a stock zx3
I have $1000 to spend on a stock 03 zx3. And am looking to get the most bang for my buck. I need ideas. Any input would be appreciated.

Budderybunz 02-04-2013 11:55 AM

I would look into used parts. You could possibly get some coilovers and bolt ons for a grand used.

sgtsmasher 02-04-2013 12:45 PM

there are a lot of options! are you looking for something to make the car faster, more fun to drive? you looking for looks of the car like comsmetic stuff? are you looking for sound, like a better stereo set up in the car? your question is kinda vague. we could help more with more questions as to what your goal is.

thingsidont 02-04-2013 03:17 PM

If you're gonna go for power then most people will agree that you should get
Toms tune (last) $400
with the $600 you got left for parts get

-SVT snorkel with drop in air filter
-SVT header
- 2.25in-2.5in exhausts

all of this should fall into your budget if youre looking for more power. and all these parts can be normally found in the BST section.

Araley 02-04-2013 04:34 PM

Yeah I'm basically looking for more power. I've seen the svt headers. But have yet to find the air box. And I'm definitely going to want a tune cause I'm going to take out the egr and run no cat. So I want my car to still run in closed loop.

thingsidont 02-04-2013 07:06 PM

try to look in the parts car section, there always seems to be a new busted svt for parts

freemind 02-04-2013 07:51 PM

Adjustable cam gears are money well spent. A 65mm TB will help a little and will give you great response off the line FWIW

iminhell 02-04-2013 09:51 PM


I have 1 car with power and very little suspension work.
My other car is all suspension work.

I love driving the one with suspension. The one with the power isn't nearly as fun. No traction, rolls through corners, feels like a minivan. Really shows me that I should have listened to those who told me to do suspension first then build power years and years ago. If I had to do it all over again, I'd listen to their wisdom.

On the cheap/budget, buy the stock SVT springs, struts and shocks. It'll lower the car a little and firm it up nicely. Best part is the whole package can be had for around $300 new/shipped (IIRC it's still available from Ford).
If you want a little stiffer spring, find RS springs.
If you want a little better strut/shock, look for the 'Dynamic' suspension.
Or you can go with something like an Eibach kit or H&R, both of which will cost more and will be a little stiffer.
Also keep in mind that you should keep money back for proper alignment after any suspension work.

After that, good tires. They can make a world of difference. I run a Summer tire and a separate Winter tire. The compounds of all season tires are too much of a compromise IMHO and I have better results running tires specific to the season.

Simple bolt-on's like intake, exhaust and such should really be accompanied by a good tune. Without a tune you really won't see as much benefit and you are risking the safety of the engine. I always thought some shop would sell it all as a package deal (like I've seen for other cars) but no one has yet. I don't like 'stage 1', 2, etc. but for simplicity tune, intake and exhaust should be sold as a stage 1 kit.

Far as intakes go, you really only need the lower half of the SVT airbox and the snorkel. The top half is identical. You need the bottom because of the shape difference between snorkels, round vs triangle.

Exhaust, SVT header hands down. Simply put, it's reliable. I've cracked 2 Focus Central headers in the same spot. I gave up and bought SVT, I won't go back. Second best would be the Focus Werks header.
Simplicity, Go with the FSW header. With the SVT you have to buy an offroad pipe and SVT specific flexpipe, which adds to the cost. With the FSW you just need a flexpipe.

For the flex back, go on youtube and listen to them. Fair amount of options but most will sound quite similar. The FSW Stealth option is very nice and quality. I'm getting older and I don't much care for noisy exhaust.
The lower cost option is Trubendz. You have options of mufflers and resonators you can add and they have some of the lowest pricing. But there are some who've had minor fitment issues.
Exhaust diameter, depending on you power goals, I wouldn't go smaller than 2.5". Yes it sounds big and many will say you should go smaller. I've gone blue in the face arguing this and few have listened. Just trust me on this one. FWIW, I'm running 3" on my car, no downside.

Also, you don't want to neglect the brakes or start to modify a car that is in need of repair to be safe. Always start with a proper running car. Things like adding suspension to worn bushings will only exacerbate problems and cause faster ware.

focusmaniaczx3 02-04-2013 10:49 PM

first off listen to this man. he knows what he's talking about. And hands down the biggest bang for your buck for power is gonna be nitrous. Add that on top of what has already been said by iminhell

kensaysrawr 02-07-2013 08:03 PM


Originally Posted by iminhell (Post 4572959)

On the cheap/budget, buy the stock SVT springs, struts and shocks. It'll lower the car a little and firm it up nicely. Best part is the whole package can be had for around $300 new/shipped (IIRC it's still available from Ford).

Link to this? I cant find this anywhere. Ford website sells each individual strut for $100 a pop.(from ford parts website)

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