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Discussion Starter #1
Hey i have a 2.2 automatic with 150,000 miles want to upgrade engine in the near future; what kind of motor can I put in it and is there anything I can do now to make her run faster or preform better.
 

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Depends on a lot of things:
'05 or '06: Don't bother. The stock ECM can't be tuned, severely limiting potential.
Coupe: Probably not worth it. I'd save up and get an SS.
Sedan: Lots of fun to be had, where boosted sedans were only made in 2009 and command a premium as a result.
An eBay turbo and a conservative tune would give you a really fun sleeper. Upgrading internals or getting a proper ZZP turbo kit are also viable options if you have the cash.
 

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No use unless you swap an ECM as well. Buying a different car would be much more cost effective.
 

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I have an ‘06 LT sedan with the 2.2 auto. My understanding is that there are major differences in the actual wiring harness from the 2.2 to the 2.4, otherwise a 2.4 swap would be great. Very noticeable when comparing the ignition coils on the 2.2 in 05-06 models. Also, no one is willing or able to tune the 05-06 2.2, so again it’s limited as far as making the most out of bolt on items such as a header and larger diameter exhaust, or cold air intake pipe. If you were to be able to tune the computer with the said parts, you’d actually make a decent amount of power increase, 15-25 hp for instance. I’m not really sure what the engine will do if you put intake and exhaust besides be louder. It could help a little bit I’m sure.

Obviously if an engine swap was fairly easy, there would be a lot of people doing them in these cars with the 2.2 engine. I usually get the same response of, “ you should just buy one with the 2.4 in it”. As in I should look for an SS or Sport that’s got the 2.4 engine. I’ve looked and haven’t found any that were great deals or anything considering their condition most of the time. I’d like to find a turbo sedan, but they are not particularly common, and I would suppose most people that own them don’t want to part from them. I have found the 2.4 sedans but not many in good shape for the price they are listed for. I like the sedan over the coupe myself.

I have considered getting a mid length header and having a larger diameter exhaust installed. Maybe some lowering springs and aftermarket wheels. I’m not sure yet though as I may have other plans and end up looking for a Cobalt with the 2.4 and 5 speed. I haven’t had my car for too long. I still need to send it to a paint shop since the paint is looking quite aged.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have an ‘06 LT sedan with the 2.2 auto. My understanding is that there are major differences in the actual wiring harness from the 2.2 to the 2.4, otherwise a 2.4 swap would be great. Very noticeable when comparing the ignition coils on the 2.2 in 05-06 models. Also, no one is willing or able to tune the 05-06 2.2, so again it’s limited as far as making the most out of bolt on items such as a header and larger diameter exhaust, or cold air intake pipe. If you were to be able to tune the computer with the said parts, you’d actually make a decent amount of power increase, 15-25 hp for instance. I’m not really sure what the engine will do if you put intake and exhaust besides be louder. It could help a little bit I’m sure.

Obviously if an engine swap was fairly easy, there would be a lot of people doing them in these cars with the 2.2 engine. I usually get the same response of, “ you should just buy one with the 2.4 in it”. As in I should look for an SS or Sport that’s got the 2.4 engine. I’ve looked and haven’t found any that were great deals or anything considering their condition most of the time. I’d like to find a turbo sedan, but they are not particularly common, and I would suppose most people that own them don’t want to part from them. I have found the 2.4 sedans but not many in good shape for the price they are listed for. I like the sedan over the coupe myself.

I have considered getting a mid length header and having a larger diameter exhaust installed. Maybe some lowering springs and aftermarket wheels. I’m not sure yet though as I may have other plans and end up looking for a Cobalt with the 2.4 and 5 speed. I haven’t had my car for too long. I still need to send it to a paint shop since the paint is looking quite aged.
Thank you. I appreciate the knowledge.
 

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I think I have figured out why the aftermarket tuner companies don’t bother with the 05-06 ecm tuning. It may have to due with the 16-bit processor vs the 07-10 having used a 32-bit processor. I’m not sure what the cars with the 2.4 or 2.0 had used, but I’d assume they were already using a 32-bit since they are able to be tuned.

Im going to have to research it a bit more to find out if anyone is willing or able to tune the earlier ecms. It would be nice since theres bolt ons that just need that bit of tuning to make them worthwhile.
 
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