Nissan Patrol 4.5 performance

Submitted: Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 14:57
ThreadID: 65491 Views:20051 Replies:8 FollowUps:6
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Hi this topic may already have been bantered about but judging from the number of experienced forum members, here's hoping you can help. I have a 2001 GU 4.5l patrol (duel fuel). I would like to know if there is any way to increase performance mainly in power. I tow a 1500kg campertrailer and it can't handle inclines and I am talking about on the blacktop on the open highway. I may be travelling around 90-100kms but it can drop back at much as 70kms even if I get a run up. I have heard about modifying the exhaust to snorkels and chips. Would welcome tried and true solutions if there are any out there. By the way, there is no difference in power when running on gas or petrol. I love my Patrol but towing it just ain't built for. Why on earth did they put such a small engine in a big truck?
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Reply By: Member - Tour Boy (QLD) - Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:19

Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:19
Hi Meerkat,
no smaller than the what the cruisers have had from 1992- 2004
Extractors and a 3' system,
Check the timing it may be retarded slightly,
You can get dual mapped chips that recognise the difference between LPG and petrol and adjusts the ecu accordingly.

2010 Isuzu FTS800 Expedition camper
2015 Fortuner
Had 72 cruisers in my time

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AnswerID: 346353

Reply By: Chambo - Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:20

Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:20
HI Meerkat,

We all know what you mean. I had a GQ and I put the 4.5 in it running a Holden computer. It was ok with 108 RWKW. The GQ is also a bit lighter that the GU. Extractors, good exhaust is the starting point but if you really want to maintain some sort of momentum then turbo it with the duel fuel. You don't have to run big numbers. 6-7 lb and you will have a smile that you won't be able to get rid of until you get used to it and want more.

Use a gas research carby, a computer that can handle two different tunes, 1 for petrol and 1 for gas. You can use the standard diesel manifold and turbo of choice.

Ideally it will be intercooled but not completely necessary on low boost engines. These engines love a little forced induction and will last forever if looked after.

You will need a good tuner to get it set up and presto up those hills will she fly. LPG loves turbos the main thing is to get set up corrrectly. What state are you in? If in Victoria, call PGS in Mornington and ask for Joel. He is the man.


AnswerID: 346357

Follow Up By: meerkat - Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:33

Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:33
Hi Chambo and thanks for your recommendations. I don't have a deep enough wallet to fund something this extravagant.
FollowupID: 614524

Reply By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:43

Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:43
Mine is a 4.8 and it flies and find it hard to imagine that there should be that much difference. I tow a heavy trailer and a van without too much of a problem. I'm guessing here but are you running it on gas when towing and maybe the engine doesn't like running on gas?

I would suggest it is not the engine size that is the problem.

Kind regards
AnswerID: 346364

Follow Up By: Madfisher - Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 18:17

Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 18:17
Beatit the old tech 4.5 is a 12 valve ohv while the 4.8 is a hi tech dohc 24v motor like chalk and cheese.
Cheers Pete
FollowupID: 614400

Follow Up By: meerkat - Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:36

Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:36
There is no difference between running on gas or petrol and has always been the case. It was serviced not too long ago and timing was adjusted then. It was fine for about a month but I have noticed the performance declining again. The 4.5 engine in the Nissan has always been considered underpowered for the weight of the vehicle. I have been told I can get at least 18kw more with the installation of a Unichip.
FollowupID: 614525

Reply By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:57

Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 15:57
Hi Meerkat

Theres a massive torque & power difference between the 4.8 and 4.5 and seriously I wouldn't consider anything less than a small supercharger for that engine.

Think long and hard before you go down a path of small dissapointing and costly improvements and take the plunge and trade up to a 4800 which has the rest of the gear like bigger brakes to match.

It will prove cheaper in the long run.

Robin Miller

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AnswerID: 346367

Follow Up By: meerkat - Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:37

Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:37
Ouch, at a cost of around $7k, I can't warrant spending that type of money on a vehicle I may only have for a few more years.
FollowupID: 614526

Reply By: nickb - Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 17:53

Wednesday, Jan 28, 2009 at 17:53
Autos are worse than the manuals, and I found I only used overdrive if I was unladen and driving on a flat road. I now have a manual and it is better but still nothing flash.

As mentioned these motors love turbos/gas, especially on gas. AXT does a kit for about $6500 including chip which is very competitive. PGS seem to know everything about turbos, they will be able to help you out. A big outlay but if you get extractors, exhaust, chip, snorkel that will cost about $3-4k depending on what you get, and the increase in power won't be anything special. On my last truck I invested in a snorkel, extractors and exhaust and played with the timing but it all had minimal effect.

I also got quoted from my trusted mechanic almost $5k to rebuild my motor. This included new pistons/rings, ported head, up the compression (run it mostly on gas), play with the fuel system and something else(maybe chip, can't remember). He estimated 180-200kW and the motor will look untouched from the outside. Might be worth looking into.
AnswerID: 346392

Follow Up By: meerkat - Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:39

Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:39
Cheers and thanks for your insight. I may play around with the chip to begin with. Ploughing $7k into an 8 year old vehicle scares me. I may as well trade the patrol in for something better at towing.
FollowupID: 614528

Reply By: meerkat - Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:32

Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 11:32
Thanks Dave - I thought the engine in the Landcruiser was superior to Nissans
AnswerID: 346525

Reply By: Member - Troll 81 (QLD) - Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 13:28

Thursday, Jan 29, 2009 at 13:28

I have the 99 GU 4.5 and find it great. I run a larger exhaust system with pacemaker extractors. One thing you should check is your MAF sensor...mine was faulty and after I got a dyno they picked that up. It improved performance and fuel economy. I don't do heaps of towing but tow dads boat every now and again and find it does the job just fine.
AnswerID: 346556

Follow Up By: meerkat - Monday, Feb 02, 2009 at 10:05

Monday, Feb 02, 2009 at 10:05
It apparently was on the dynotune a couple of months back and suspect it should have found a faulty MAF sensor if this was the problem. The patrol did run fine for short time after the tune and valve adjustment but seems to have reverted back to being a slug.
FollowupID: 615345

Reply By: meerkat - Monday, Feb 02, 2009 at 10:10

Monday, Feb 02, 2009 at 10:10
Thanks Everyone who responded. I have decided to go down the path of having a unichip installed so will post a further update to let you know how it went.
AnswerID: 347209

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