Any hip hopper worth his bling can tell you that Tony Montana said that once you get the power then you get the women. If it's truly that easy to snag a chica then Jonny should rely on GM Performance Parts instead of his customized pink and purple Air Max's. Rather than suffer through the indignity of pastel-colored kicks, anyone who rolls a Saturn Ion Red Line ('04 and up) or Chevy Cobalt SS Supercharged ('05 and up) can choose between two performance upgrade kits, called Stage One and Stage Two, that produce real power increases, are affordable, and can be installed by the average enthusiast (uh, that would be you).
The Stage One and Stage Two performance upgrade kits were developed by the actual engineering nerd-herd from the GM Powertrain, GM Performance Division and GM Performance Parts brain trust so you know this bacon will sizzle. These kits are incredibly easy to install and make a dramatic difference in power output because the people that originally developed the LSJ 2.0 L Ecotec engine went back and got the most performance from it with these Staged kits. Even better, the team was able to achieve this power increase while maintaining full 50 state emissions status, meeting the formidable requirements for California Air Resources Board (CARB) Executive Order (E.O.) certification. Or if you prefer plain English-these parts are smog legal.
While the LSJ Ecotec engine is rated at 205hp at 5,600rpm and 200 lb-ft of torque at 4,400rpm, the Staged kits bump the power considerably. The Stage One kit raises the horsepower and torque output to 230 hp at 6,800rpm and 200 lb-ft at 5,600rpm. Even better, the Stage Two kit puts out 241 hp at 6,400rpm and 218 lb-ft at 5,400rpm. Those of you who did well in math know that's a 36 hp gain. Now that's a spicy meatball!
To show you how easy this is we're going to walk you through the install of a Stage Two system on a 2006 Chevy Cobalt SS-SC.
The Stage One and Two systems are upgradeable, meaning you can install a Stage One kit first and eventually step up to the Stage Two configuration with the Stage Two upgrade kit. Use these part numbers to order your Stage One, Stage Two or the Stage One-to-2 Upgrade Kit from your local GM Performance Parts dealer today (go to www.goodwrench.com for a dealer locator).17801947 - Stage One17803229 - Stage Two17803230 - Stage Two upgrade kit (add to Stage One)
INSTALL DIFFICULTY: Intermediate
MSRP: Stage One Kit-$500.00 (includes higher-flow fuel injectors and ECU calibration; Stage Two Kit-$750.00 (includes Stage One parts plus a smaller supercharger pulley and drive belt).
PROS: 36 hassle-free, smog-legal ponies
CONS: Your lazy ass and the reasons you won't get off of it.
VERDICT: Sometimes OEM aftermarket offerings are of the wood-grain variety and sometimes we're lucky enough to get stuff like this. Easy installation, big power gains, 50-state legal, and OE quality-it just doesn't get any better than this.