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First drive of BB’s Clio Turbo

  BMW 320d Sport

Theres only one word for BBs new Clio Turbo - mental! For those of you who dont know, its a turbo conversion of the F7P 1.8 16v lump, out of the Clio 16v. There are two versions, firstly, low pressure which is done to a standard engine and will put out around 200bhp max. The second version is the high pressure conversion which entails pulling the whole lump apart and rebuilding it strong with low compression pistons; this is the one I drove in.

I went out yesterday in it for a passenger ride and a drive of my own, and the power and torque are truly outrageous. It was running yesterday at the standard power 241bhp (or as close as you can get- most people whove used them, agree that BBs rollers are pretty much bang on.) Its frighteningly quick, on the limit of breaking traction every time you put your foot down. Around the back roads before you know it, youre up to 80 or 90 between corners. On the open road, we were pushing a Sapphire Cossie along and he had to let us past. Feels like a 13-second 1/4 miler to me, and easily a match for any Scooby.

lucky git nick, ive ot yet managed to blag a test run in that thing ("YET")

So is the power instant? no waiting for the turbo to get spinning? Have they done any additional head work to the car?

BTW, whats happening to yours at the moment? i saw it parked up at BBs last week? heard you lovingly cracked 4 pistons.... Do i smell i BBPTturbo coming on in? in my view.. its a job worth doing if they can hold there name to its reliablitiy...even though my car is near enough standard, its still quick and i know i can go out there each morning and it will start at the first touch of the key!! thats the way i hope it will stay...

£5500 isnt to bad when you think about all the work that involved.. however if your going to go for it.. its got to be for the high boost version, £7500... now that is alot of cash!

im still in 6 minds about it.... :confused:

and easily a match for any Scooby.....

Hmmmm its about 200bhp under powered against Harveys scoob which has probably had 10-12ks worth of work on it ;)

Most modified scoobs are pushing 330-350bhp now, bit scary eh ;)


330bhp? Isnt that what the BB show 16v Turbo is running?

Not that it has the capabilities of 4WD or anyhting! Just a headline figure - but I bet its the match of many a Scoob.:D
  BMW 320d Sport

Bring it on TB1! Im sure Harvey has spent 10-12k on his Scoob, good luck to him. But what you gotta realise is that anyone with a turbo Clio can now do the exact same mods as the 2.0 turbo 4wd boys have. 240bhp is the standard, everyday power. For special occasions there is plenty more to come. Its only running 14 psi of boost at the moment! There are always gonna be mental powered Scoobys around, but dont get too comfy. Remember the Clio turbo is a 1.8 16v turbo rebuilt from the ground up to perform.

Definitely lighter than *any* Scooby, and I would have thought a lot more power on the road and less lost through 4wd transmission. Obviously off the line will always be a problem with FWD but once rolling I dont think your everyday Scoobies will be able to live with it.
  BMW 320d Sport

Rockport - it took a bit of a while to get used to how you drive with a turbo, not having to keep it on the boil like in a Valver. You can floor it and it will go in any gear, on the open road you can leave it in 4th and it will pull. But it seems that you only really get a little lag if youre at 2000rpm or something like that. At 3000 it really gets going. At 4000 and upwards, whenever you nail it you seem to have almost instant boost; even touching the throttle lightly does the job. Its a hybrid turbo, T28 I think? Anyway I dont pretend to be an expert on these things but I think it combines the air-shifting capabilities of a bigger turbo along with the fast spin-up times of a smaller unit. How it does that I dont know!?

I am definitely going ahead with the high-boost turbo conversion. It makes a lot of sense for me. Ive always said Ill never sell my 16v so recouping my investment isnt even an issue. I was gonna buy a Scooby in a couple of years and keep the Clio for a bit of weekend hot-hatch action. But this way Ill never need a Scooby, my Clio turbo will be quicker. Plus theres the stealth factor, Im the kind of person who would rather surprise people rather than go around in a lairy car that everyone knows is quick. Itll add to peoples disappointment when I cane them! Lastly, with 4 blown pistons I see it as a golden opportunity to get serious. An engine rebuild is the least thats on the cards, so why not do the job properly and get my baby how I want it?

i think youll make a lot of people envious nick! Me for starters! Itll be interesting to say the least and i agree with what your saying, if your gonna do a job do it from the ground up and do it properly!
  Clio 1.6 16V

But can you lay down 300+bhp through a mere few square inches of front rubber is the question? .....will be a lot of fun trying though ...he he! A 0-100 video in the wet could be very entertaining me thinks!;)

Well Im planning to get an Omex Treaction Control system fitted so hopefully yes! :)

I dont expect 0-100 to be massivly incresed, obviosly itll be darn quick, but traction at low speed will be a big prbolem, 40-140 should be entertaining though.
  BMW 320d Sport

Well Ill have to see how we go. On my 215 rubber Ive got about as much traction as I can realistically use on a valver. Any more and id be really straining the transmission, if rather than spinning up, it actually gripped!

I was thinking seriously about putting 17s on instead of my 18s but maybe Ill be better off on the bigger rims...

Anyway, its not like going down the cams and nitrous route where you gotta have a bit of bottle to go for it and transform your everyday motor into a lumpy idling, clutch destroying machine. The thing is, the turbo drives perfectly normally whenever you want it, you can even run a cat and pass your emissions test. Then when a Scooby or Cossie comes screaming past in the fast lane, you just put your foot down and let battle commence...making sure you give them a wave as you sail past! Its a lot of money for a lot of work, theres no denying that, but I reckon its value - you get what you pay for, and theres no other Clio that will be that quick for the same total outlay. For under 10 grand including the price of the car itself, anyone can have a road-going missile that looks like a normal hot hatch.

Nick - at this rate youll be the one to prove my previous comments regarding a clio turbo wrong! But youll have to take me for a spin in it just to make sure! ;)
  Clio 182, OctaviaVRS

My 5 would eat a scooby to 90mph, so im sure the Clio will have no troubles, my 5 had around 210 bhp, and i would keep up with my mates "modded" scooby no problems, and that was when it wasnt even running right - when it was rebuilt id have pissed on him no problems!

I want to see this Clio now, sounds like fun..............just wish i could afford it!
  Clio 172 cup

This clio turbo certainly does sound the Dog danglies, Although its an awlful lot of cash. What does actually get done then? Is anything done to the transmission as well as the engine? I would have thought with that sort of power a LSD would be a must to get any decent quarter mile times
  BMW 320d Sport

Phil, once its done Ill be glad to take anyone for a spin. 50p a go. Nick, theres nothing I like more than seeing a Scooby or Cossie getting caned by a 15 year old Renault 5, and only a 1.4 pushrod lump at that.

Im no expert on 5s or turbos in general (although Im gonna have to start learning fast), but it just seems logical to me that going over 200hp in a 5 is when you start to get serious, assuming its reliable power. Up to 250hp out of a 5 is surely about the limit of how much tuning you can do, before you start to spend huge amounts of money for very little gain? But on the 1.8 16v youve got a lump that basically is a lot stronger and better designed, can flow a lot more air as standard, then you rebuild it as a low compression turbo lump and its bound to perform well, 240-250bhp is just a baseline to work from.

Ignoring other factors that you need to run a 5 lump for any length of time, how much power roughly does it make at different boost pressures? Eg. whats the standard boost? what will it make at 10psi, 15, 20, 25 ,30 etc?
  Clio 1.6 16V

Nick, what are you using for a gearbox/diff, driveshafts and clutch? I presume these are not standard? Otherwise they are very likely be short lived, even if you do elect to using wheelspin to regulate the torque. The output you are producing must be close on double the normal for that model, and beyond any design safety margins.
  Clio 182, OctaviaVRS

Yeah Nick, it was certainly fun while it lasted (no pun intended ;0)

Anyway, at around 10 psi it would only be around 135 bhp, 15 psi probably around 165 but at 20 psi my car was around 210 bhp, theres no graph as such to show measure psi vs bhp as it varies completely, - thats one thing 5 owners get annoyed at when someone gets their car on the rollers and it says "200 bhp at 20 psi" they then go on to say, "well my cars got 300 bhp at 30 psi etc" when in reality 30 psi the car would go bang, so thats not really fair to say it

Do you remember Jamie Shaws feature of his Silver 5 in Fast car? There was a quote that said "At 50 psi this engine produces a genuine 350 bhp" Something along those lines, but the fact is that the engine would probably take 25-30 psi absolute max before going bang, so to say it has 350 bhp is a lie in my opinion.

DD Autosports have however just had their raider on the rollers at 306 bhp, and thats REAL power from 1.4, no bullsh*t there!

Anyway, hope what i said sort of makes sense, and Nick i agree with you that if you can lower the compression on the 16v youve potentially got a wicked turbo motor, i just wish it was cheaper to do!!
  BMW 320d Sport

Flying Scotsman - its gonna be my standard Williams box which is the longest/toughest off-the-shelf you can get for an old Clio. An integral part of the build is that BB put a custom clutch which is 15mm bigger than standard to take all the extra torque. But like any transmission, if you abuse it you will face big repair bills. If youre sensible with how you lay down the power the trans will be fine for the job in hand.

Nick - whoever says 20psi = 200bhp therefore 30psi =30bhp needs to think a bit more carefully, so I sympathise with 5 owners on that. And obviously you cant run 30psi on a lump built for 20. What Im trying to figure is how to compare the two lumps,the 1.4 GTT and the 1.8 16v, establish a baseline really. If 15psi gives 165 then we can work backwards, 15 psi is roughly 1 bar,or atmospheric pressure, so that would mean 80 hp without the turbo, about right for an old 1.4 lump. If you used 10psi of boost youd see 133hp, so thats about right too. 20psi would come out at.... (80x20/15 + 80)...187hp, a little bit down on your figures, and I havent yet included the inefficiency of the turbocharging.

Still it looks like a rough rule of thumb is that for a given boost level, the 1.8 lump should make at least 60hp more than the 1.4?

I used to own a 16v clio, and my car out handled every cosi I ever met!! (without exception) and the 2wd saphires were just laughable!! I once had a race with an rs turbo(210bhp owned by a friend of mine) and my car was completely standard around a 2 mile block, his car was very quick but he couldnt keep it in a straight line, and I had to keep waiting for him!! My point is this, that its not all about whos got the most power!! ( 7 years 2 stroke karting taught my this) its no use having stupid bhp if you cant get the power down. And I can honestley say that the clio 16v is one of the best handling cars, and easiest to make perform well cars that I have ever driven. This is why I have just bought my latest car a Williams clio 1.

I hope this doesnt offend anyone cos thats not my intention, I just wanted to offer my opinion.

  BMW 320d Sport

Phil, you took the words right out of my mouth.

And dont anyone say it must have been while you were kiss-ing me...

Ben - nah mate, skip the dump valve and drop in a wastegate jobbie -


Much cooler! ;)