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FLAT engine?!

  Renault Clio 197 ('08)
Hello all!
I've recently purchased myself a 172 which meant the 1.2 16v dynamique had to go. Fortunately my apprentice bought it from me and loves the car, but upon having it checked over for peace of mind, the garage said all was fine but the engine felt very 'flat' and wasn't as nippy as it should be? The only mod to this car is that it has a stainless steel exhaust (cat-back) made by powerflow that was supposedly fitted professionally. When I first picked it up it was so so loud and chavvy, so I returned and they installed a center box which quietened it down. To be honest I didn't notice much difference in how the engine performed, but could this be the result of the exhaust? If so, is there any remedy for it? I've heard about back-pressures and stuff but I'm really not sure about this stuff - any suggestions? Thanks guys.

So long as they've not made a mistake there nothing wrong maybe the exhaust is blocked up but you should notice this realy. You migh also find you've got something in the intake.

Anayway it depends what the garage are used to a 1.2 feels slow caompared to a 2.0 car if there compariring it to a say 106 rally then they have to take into account its not the same power to weight.
  Renault Clio 197 ('08)
Well that's exactly what I was thinking - the engineer even said he drives to work in the morning in an EVO 9 FQ 340!! Hardly the slowest of cars. He says the engine should pick up at lot more at the lower revs but just drones along?
  Renault Clio 197 ('08)
Yeah I've driven my friends and they seem a bit quicker but mine always had 17 inch wheels on it which won't help! I now have the original wheels on and it's still flat - no idea where to start?!?