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February 20

Twenty two year old Vishnu likes his cars to look plain and simple yet go like stink. So there are no shouty paint jobs, no flamboyant body kits, no ‘look at me’ decals; just a set of good looking 17inch Lenso Samurai alloy wheels and a suspicious looking ‘T’ alphabet on the boot, next to the Cedia badge. And that T is where this story unravels.

We broke the suspense on the cover, but 0-100kmph in 6.7seconds is pure sports car and fast saloon territory. The cheapest petrol car that comes close is the Volvo T6, but it’s almost three times more expensive. And the next one, an Audi A6 3.0TFSI is almost five times more. It was a small drive for the owner to the tuner, but a long journey for Red Rooster Performance to take the 4G94 motor from its stock 115bhp to its current state of tune. The team has been turbo charging naturally aspirated cars for a long time now so Vishnu didn’t have to think twice before taking his car to them. And to add to his confidence was the fact that Red Rooster has been rallying Cedias for nearly half a decade to know them inside out.

Once it embarked the journey to power crest, the stock internals were the first to get replaced by some forged ones to take the boost of a Garett T3 turbo. The low compression pistons were connected to the knife edged crank using Eagle connecting rods. The valve-train was upgraded with a Ivan Tighe custom grind turbo cam and an adjustable cam gear. A Malpassi rising rate Fuel Pressure Regulator and an Autotronic SMC standalone Engine management system were employed to control the 500cc Nippon Injectors now feeling the cylinders.

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Intercooling was the job of a Garett front mounted intercooler while breathing improvements resulted from a K&N conical filter and custom tubular exhaust manifold and downpipe. Dyno runs on Red Rooster’s own hub dyno proved the engine was developing close to 310bhp.

For all the power nestling under his right foot, Vishnu is a very considerate and safe driver. He drives sedately on public roads and never lets hooliganism gets in the way of safety and politeness. So for quite a long time, he drove on stock suspension, but now he felt the need and switched over to Tein Super Street with EDFC. EDFC is Electronic Damping Force Controller, a system which employs stepper motors at the top of strut to turn it either way so as to adjust the damping force to your liking through an electronic module inside your car. Round the bends, the Tein suspension have helped the Cedia feel benign and better sorted. The steering feel has been massively increased by the package, helped of course by the wheels that are 17inchers.

When you press the throttle, there is a moment of absolute nothingness. There is a noticeable amount of turbo lag, enough to let you think twice about that enthusiastic throttle input. It’s a warning of some sort, giving you a silent moment to think about your action. Because a second later, you are going to be catapulted forward with violence while you struggle to keep the torque-steering car straight. The biting point in the Exedy eight puck clutch is a bit aggressive but it never gets tired after repeated launch attempts. And the best part is, the car is a daily driver that is as adept at city as it is on the highways. If you have a Cedia, this is the one of the best upgrades you can possibly have. With Cedia residuals touching a bottom line and HM still offering service support, who needs an Evo now?

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