Dihatsu Terios - Improving engine and suspension performance


Hi Everyone,

Just got myself a Dihatsu Terios mini 4x4 and I have caught the bug! Looks exactly like this one here:

I am totally new to modifying cars. I have a couple of questions:

1) Air filters - Is it worth investing on a better quality air filter to improve fuel consumption. See examples here:


The fuel consumption at the moment is aroung 30 mpg for mixed urban/town driving. Will I really gain increased bhp?
A regular one is around €15 and the better one is around €40-60.

2) Iridium spark plugs -

Do they really make much difference for an ordinary non-high performance car?

3) Force air intake

Does this kind of modification puts a strain on the Engine life? What about insurance - surely it would make it more expensive to insure a modified car?

4) Body accessories -
Putting sidestep bars and front and rear bumper guards - are they not strictly illegal? I know they are illegal in the UK as far as I know. You know bull bars are well known to kill pedestrians! What about the full plastic version - How do you find out if it is legal/safe?


5) stabilizers for body rolls -
Becasue the Terios is so high up and the body is quiet narrow, when you are driving it, it feels like you are rocking on a boat in the lake when it's windy. I wonder if a strut bar would improve things a little. What about anit-roll bars? Again will this affect insurance severely?



BTW I am not interested in speeding - just want to customize my car to make it more personal and more comfortable:)

Thanks for the advise.

Air filters - they are just

Air filters - they are just like i used on my motocross bike as a kid - not worth the extra in my opinion - keep the stock one

spark plugs - keep the stock ones (although platinum ones were v good in my 230 bhp mugen engined prelude - esp as they were 80000miles before replacing - one garage took them out for standard ngks - made him put them back!!!)

Forced air = not from an electric fan!

Bull bars and side steps - if the product is sold as approved then its fine to use - there has never been a recorded pedestrian death as a direct result of a bull bar in the uk - they are legal and only subject of media hype nothing else -you want em - you buy em!!!

as fot the suspension components - top strut bar - maybe, the anti roll bar most people like to whip them off for more off road articulation - if its on road then again - maybe

depends how deep your pockets are

sorry if it sounds like im being negative - but lots of gear sold for aftermarket is just hype - and if it isnt most of the time you need to do a bunch of other things too - air filters are a classic example of this (its a bit like the 'fire triangle' you change the air intake then you have to consider the fuelling and the exhaust too to get the blance right)

hope this helps some



Fourtrak Fieldman TDL 3" Body Lift on 31"x10.5 MT's
Chugging away nicely on B100 - happy days!!!

Fourtrak Fieldman TDL 3" Body Lift on 31"x10.5 MT's
Chugging away nicely on B100 - happy days!!!


In many years of engine tuning and performance modifications, i have yet to see any of these claims substantiated, let alone any proof of them working.

The only true way to improve performance is to get a package of modifications from an expert, this will optimise any air flow, fuelling, and aftermarket items, as fitting them on their own is a waste of money.

One possibility is a rolling road tune, this involves optimising what you already have, countering any drop off due to wear, and although expensive would be the best way forwards.