Sometimes the raw fury that the 2.0L 8v New Beetle is, just isnt enough. Even with substantial mods, the 2.0L could use a good kick to get going, but short of a turbo or a supercharger setup, there arent many ways available to obtain large horsepower increases. The problem with getting a turbo or supercharger is they are a substantial investment. Unfortunately, forced-induction of this type is just not something that is in many peoples budgets. There is, however, a cheaper way to get reliable power, and it only requires about four hours of your time.
Recently, a company named ZEX based out of Memphis, Tennessee, came out with a Throttle Position Sensor (TPS)activated nitrous system for VW 2.0L 8v cars. The kit will work on all 2.0 motors back to 93 when the Mk III was introduced to the U.S. market. The really cool thing about this kit is the way it controls nitrous-to-fuel ratios. It uses what ZEX calls their Nitrous Management Unit (NMU), which controls the fuel/nitrous mixture by reading the bottle pressure to determine the ratio. This, in theory, should give it the right ratio at all pressures. The nitrous comes on at full throttle and is activated by the TPS. This means you dont have to reach for any buttons to push, you just stomp on the gas. Of course, this eliminates a lot of worries while having to drive and pretty much takes the thinking out of using nitrous. ZEX also has add-on accessories you may want that you can order directly from the company.
We wanted to put the ZEX kit through its paces to see how good the system really works. With our immensely busy schedules of dating supermodels and going to all the hottest clubs and parties, we decided to give Costin a call at Stage-Up in Santa Fe Springs, California, to perform the install. Stage-Up can do a number of things for you from custom rollcages to custom turbo setups, you name it he can probably do it for you. In order to see what this bad boy was putting to the ground, we called R&D Dyno in Gardena, California. They have a well-trained staff and are a very professional bunchit just so happens that Darren knows a ton of helpful tips about nitrous. Because we had a completely bone-stock 2.0L New Beetle to work with, we figured we could get a pretty accurate idea of what this kit alone would produce. With nothing else done to the car, we bolted on the nitrous and lit the tires up.