Twin Surbo

The Twin Surbo

Perodua Kelisa: Twin Surbo installed on the air filter inlet

Photo: Twin Surbo installed on the air  filter inlet of the Perodua Kelisa

Photo: Twin Surbo installed on the air  filter inlet of the Perodua Kelisa

Hyundai Matrix: Twin Surbo fitted at outlet of air filter case and pipe afterwards

Twin Surbo fitted at outlet of air filter case and pipe afterwards in Hyundai Matrix

Twin Surbo installed on the air filter inlet of the Mazda 3

Photo: Twin Surbo installed on the air  filter inlet of the Mazda 3

Twin Surbo installed in the air filter outlet of the Proton Exora

Photo: Twin Surbo installed in the air  filter outlet of the Proton Exora

Twin Surbo installed in the air filter outlet of the Proton Gen 2 (the same as for the Persona).

Photo: Twin Surbo installed in the air  filter outlet of the Proton Gen 2

Frequently asked question: What's the difference between the single Surbo and the Twin Surbo?

1. The main difference is that the single Surbo has a torque peak at around 3300 rpm, while the Twin Surbo at around 2800 rpm. Your choice will depend on your your usual operating rpm. For a more detailed comparison check out the Dynamometer Test Results. The other difference is that the Twin Surbo requires twice the space to fit, around one foot of free space, so it's often fitted at the air filter inlet, in which case the filter element inside must be original to ensure a perfect seal.

Advantages of the Twin Surbo:

1. The Twin is stronger than the single Surbo between 2500-3000 rpm by 10% according to the dyno test results, so you won't need to rev much and can change gear upwards sooner. Suitable for engines with a weaker low rpm range, or narrow rpm band like diesels. Usually there will be another 5% more fuel saving if you had gotten 10% fuel saving with the single Surbo.

How to get a Twin Surbo:

1. To be on the safe side, expecially those with automatic vehicles (please read our Auto page for more details.), have one Surbo fitted first to test for power and economy, with ensures that there is no leak, and then they can add a second Surbo for a Twin Surbo if space allows. To supervise the installation yourself, look at the diagram below for the single Surbo. For the Surbo to work, all the air must pass through its centre, so proper sealing is necessary. Check that the Surbo's round inlet end is sealed (using rtv silicone or pvc pipe glue) with its rubber adaptor or the main hose pipe, and all pipe joints even if they seem to be tightly clipped are sealed to prevent air leaks. All minor vacuum hoses have to be airtight as well. The oil cap must be tightened and oil dipstick also tightened at its o-ring seal with thin masking tape as they are both air-connected to the Surbo. No other air pass devices should be used as they will cause the air to run around the Surbo. This way, the Surbo becomes ONE with the engine and it will be able to compress the air. As an option, the purge tube (see the lower diagram) can be stopped and sealed both ways to maximise the air pressure.
2. Read the page on How To Use The Surbo to reap the maximum benefits.

Twin Surbo fitted together at inlet of air filter case

3. Then, if you want more power in the form of a Twin Surbo, you can ask the installer to add another Surbo in a straight line only as the two Surbos must work next to each other, where space allows (see the lower diagram above). Do not let the installer place the second Surbo otherwise as that will not work. Note that each Surbo must be sealed to its container pipe and then the pipes sealed to each other.

If you have a 3-inch metal pipe and cone filter, or if you have no straight line for twin Surbos, here's a Twin_Surbo-ready pipe design. If there is an airflowmeter (AFM), fit the AFM just after the filter (lengthen the wire if necessary) and before the upper Surbo as the AFM can be sensitive to turbulence.

Twin_Surbo-ready pipe design

The list of Twin Surbo vehicles:

Below are vehicles petrol and diesel fitted with Twin Surbos. * means a cone filter (not included) is required to free up space along the air intake for the 11 inch long Twin. ^ denotes air pipe conversion.
ALFA
33 1.7 IE '95 145 1.6
BMW
'89 316
CHERY
'07 QQ
CHEVROLET
'04 Aveo 1.4
CITROEN
Berlingo 1.9D* Jumpy 1.9D*
DAEWOO
Lanos 1.5*
DAIHATSU
Charade CX 1.0 '87-'92 Charade 1.0 '84 '01 Extol 1.3 van* '01 Hijet 660 '02 YRV 1.3
FIAT
Uno 1.0 Palio 1.6* Punto '06 1.3
FORD
'88 1.3 Laser carb '98 Courier 4x4 2.5D
Geely
CK 1.5
HONDA
Honda '92 Civic ESi '92 LSi '93 VTi 1.6 '02 Civic EXi 1.5 '99 City '00 City VTEC '89 Prelude 2.0
HONDA
'91 Accord 2.0 carb Civic GL 1.3/1.5 '03 VTi^ '04 VTiS 1.7^ '97 VTi^
HYUNDAI
Matrix '98-'02 Atoz 1.0 '97-'00 Coupe '97-'03 Elantra '95-'05 Accent 1.3/1.5
ISUZU
'97 3.0 turbodiesel pickup
KIA
Rio 1.3/1.5 '00 Sephia 1.6 '02 Spectra 1.6 Cerato 1.6
MAZDA
'95 Astina 1.6 '96-'02 323 1.3/1.6
MERCEDES
M140 2.9D
MITSUBISHI
'03 1.6 Lancer^ '98 Lancer MR 1.6^ '93 Lancer 1.3^ '90 L300 2.0 petrol '90 Lancer 1.3 carb
NISSAN
'01 Urvan 2.7D '92-'05 Sunny 1.6 Sunny 1.4/1.5 carb '95-'98 March '82 Sunny 130Y
OPEL
'01 Corsa 1.4
PERODUA
Kelisa 1.0
PEUGEOT
Partner 1.9D* '92 405 GLi 1.6 '95 405 GR 1.6 '03 307 1.6*
PROTON
'93 Iswara carb Iswara 1.5i Wira 1.5i ^ Exora Gen 2 Persona
RENAULT
Kangoo 1.9D '95 19 1.4 '00 Megane 16V Clio 16V '00-'02 Kangoo diesel Scenic 2.0 4x4
ROVER
600
SEAT
Salsa 1.0 Collage 1.0
SKODA
'95 Felicia 1.3 '02 Fabia 1.4 '01 Octavia 1.6
SUZUKI
Suzuki Swift 1.0i Swift 1.0 carb Esteem (Baleno) 1.3 R+ 1.0 Ignis
SUBARU
'97-'05 Impreza Viki Vivio
TOYOTA
Soluna '03 Vios 1.5 '01 Echo 1.0 '83-'91 Corolla 1.3 '78-'92 Starlet 1.0 '90 Corona 1.6 carb
VW
Caddy TDi 1.9 '99 Caddy 1.6

Some observations

The Twin Surbo has faster acceleration:
'95 Mazda Astina 1.6 (9.6 secs to 100 kph when new) clocks 8.9 secs with Surbo and 8 secs with Twin Surbo (recall that the Twin has 10% more torque between 2500-3000 rpm, where the Surbo can be activated from).

Twin Surbo '92 Peugeot 405:
A friend from China driving it for the first time unknowingly moved it from idle using the wrong gear--3rd. In the morning or on a cold start (1250 rpm idle) the car will move in first and second with foot off the accelerator. Once warmed the car keeps moving in second gear on a flat road, with no pedal pressure. This shows an increased air pressure accumulation and improvement in the ultra low end. In a long traffic jam, it continued to move easily in first gear without throttle pressure at 750 rpm, even up slight slopes and with aircon--just using idling fuel. The car also managed to climb, in 5th gear, the 10-storey high Benjamin Sheares bridge, approaching at less than 90 kph from the winding and steepest side from Rochore in 5th gear, easily reaching the top at 2000rpm or about 73 kph. For 0-60 mph testing, the time was cut from 14.2 secs to 11.78 secs, same time as for the 1.8 405 so it seems the Twin Surbo adds about 200cc.

Fuel Savings

Result for the Honda Civic ESi, and the fortnight after. Another improvement. Dr Ngoh of Renault Club also had improved economy on his Renault Megane 1.4, up from 13.5 to 14.8 km/l (50/50 highway/city driving). Toyota Starlet 1.0 saves even more fuel with the Twin Surbo. Mr Din (Civic GL twincarb) also said that with the Twin Surbo and carb tuning to 0% CO, his consumption improved from 7-8 km/l to more than 9 km/l.
'95 Peugeot 405 1.6 (11 km/l originally) returns 12.1 km/l with Surbo and 12.8 km/l with Twin Surbo, improving 10% and 16% respectively. These correspond to the torque increases for engine speeds during cruising for the Surbo and Twin Surbo respectively (see dyno graphs).

Some examples of Twin Surbos (archive)

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BENEFITS
  • Lower Fuel Consumption
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  • Higher RPM Capability
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