Partial Throttle Full Boost (PTFB)

If you are here, you probably have a car with a fast spooling turbo and installed an aftermarket boost controller. This issue is common with cars that boosts at very low RPMs after installing a manual boost controller.

How low? A stock Daihatsu YRV K3-VET is no longer in vacuum ~900 RPM and makes 1 bar of boost ~2800 RPM. Here’s a dyno courtesy of my friend, on a modified K3-VET.

Daihatsu YRV Turbo K3-VET Dyno
Daihatsu YRV Turbo K3-VET Dyno

To understand PTFB, you must first understand how the stock ECU control boost. The ECU will read throttle position, current gear, RPM, intake air temperature, etc. and boost accordingly. Stock ECU boost control is very sophisticated. Because the stock ECU controls fuel and ignition, everything works great – when boost increases, the ECU adds additional fuel.

So what is PTFB?

It means having full boost at only partial throttle. Using the K3-VET with a manual boost controller as an example, cruising at 100km/h @ 4th gear is 2800 RPM. You step on the throttle slightly and the car goes into full boost.

That is awesome! Right?

No, not if you just want to maintain your speed at 100km/h, stay in vacuum and cruise.

Why does PTFB happen?

Because the boost controller does not take into consideration throttle position and current gear, among other things. PTFB most likely occurs with manual boost controllers.

So is PTFB a problem?

If you did not tune for PTFB, yes it is a major problem.

When cruising, your boost controller will put your car in boost, but the stock ECU is in closed loop and will try to keep air fuel ratios stoichiometric. You will run lean, exhaust gas temperature will increase and you WILL kill your engine eventually.

If you tuned for PTFB, your fuel consumption will be higher, and your throttle/acceleration will be less linear.

So PTFB is great if I’m tuned right?

The simple answer is no.

For a car that’s a daily commuter, it is undesirable as fuel economy is poorer. Your throttle control will also be less linear.

Imagine your grandmother is driving your car. She slows down to enter a sweeping corner. She exits & steps on the throttle to get back to cruising speed. The RPM was ~2300, PTFB kicks in for 0.5 bar of boost, and suddenly she’s flying out the corner.

Is it a bad thing? Depends, if grandma was having fun it would be great. But the sudden power surge might have caught grandma off guard and catch the guard rail instead.

On the track, PTFB in FWD cars might cause wheel spin, but not a big deal. In a RWD, the driver looses the ability to control tyre slip angle with throttle and the sudden surge of power may just sent the car spinning out.

So how do I increase boost?

You can still use a manual boost controller or simple electronic boost controller provided you tune to compensate for PTFB. If you do not want PTFB, sophisticated boost controllers such as the HKS EVC 6 or the Apex’i AVC-R coupled with a piggyback to tune fuel would work. The best way would be to flash the stock ECU if you can, otherwise get a piggyback or standalone that controls both boost and fuel with throttle input as load.

How about increasing boost on the Daihatsu YRV K3-VET engine in the Myvi Turbo?

One of the first mods I did for Myvi Turbo was to install a Turbosmart Boost Tee manual boost controller. Big mistake. PTFB and the car was hesitating and struggling. I thought if I increased boost by just a little the stock ECU can compensate for it. I can tell you from experience it won’t work.

Proton Global Small Car Spy Shots!

The new Proton Global Small Car – GSC is revealed in the flesh! Judging from the picture it should be undergoing ASEAN NCAP testing, which means the final car should look identical to this, barring variants with different bumpers or foglamps.

The new Proton Global Small Car spy shots.
The new Proton Global Small Car spy shots.


  • Projector headlamps
  • DRL on front bumper?
  • Headrest for both front and back seats
  • LED rear tail lamps
  • Reverse sensors

For now, I will call it the Proton Myviesta, you can probably guess why. To be fair, it does look good, better than Suprima S. If they pair this with a Campro CFE 1.6L engine and sell it for the same price as a Myvi 1.5L I think we have a winner. Realistically, I believe Proton is going to pair this with a Campro 1.3L and a 1.6L, and personally I feel Myvi is still going to be value for money. Yes, I am biased, this is so what did you expect?

Michelin Pilot Sport 3 (PS3) Review

The first aftermarket tyres that went onto the Myvi Turbo, before it was turbocharged, were Michelin Pilot Preceda 2 (PP2) in 195/50 R15 size. It had pretty stiff sidewalls, and was rather harsh, though performance wise its pretty good overall. Not too long later I replaced it with Goodyear Revspec RS-02 in 195/50 R15 size, Made in Japan. These tyres were softer than the PP2 and more comfortable, performed very well in the dry but was simply terrible in the wet, and they did not inspire confidence in Malaysian tropical rains while cruising at 110km/h on highways.

Michelin Pilot Sport 3
Michelin Pilot Sport 3

In early 2010, Michelin introduced its Pilot Sport 3 (PS3), and immediately I replaced my Revspec, although it still had more than 50% tread left. The size I chose were again the 195/50 R15, Made in Thailand.

My usage and driving style:

  • The Myvi Turbo is daily driver, regardless of rain or shine.
  • The Myvi Turbo does not track, gymkhana or drag. It’s a street only car.
  • I dislike braking and usually corner at speeds higher than the average joe.
  • I rotate my tyres every 10,000 to 15,000km.
  • Driving style is consistent regardless of wet or dry.
  • 90% short distance driving of ~50km daily. Occasional long distance on highways.

So after more than 2 years and 45,000km clocked on the Michelin Pilot Sport 3 (PS3), here’s my review. A tad stiffer than my Revspecs, but definitely softer than the Pilot Preceda 2. It tracked very well, and in the tyre’s entire lifespan, it had never once squealed. With these tyres I did 212km/h in the dry (in case you’re a cop, I did it on an air strip, I think) and it stayed true with no wavering or nervousness. I cruised on the highways at 110km/h while it was raining cats and dogs and it handled standing water extremely well. Noise wise, they become noticeably louder as it worn down, but were still grippy. If I were to describe them throughout its lifetime from new right down to the tread indicators, I would say they are consistent and a very safe tyre. Not that it matters, but I never had alignment and balancing issues with these tyres which may be an issue with other tyres.

Because my daily route is the same, I more or less know how fast I can take a corner, and with the Pilot Sport 3 I am able to go faster than before on the same corners. Sounds like all praise right? I just took them off my car last Sunday on 7th July 2013 but I did NOT replace them with Michelin Pilot Sport 3. Because of this:

Pilot Sport 3 Tread Failure

Although the tread is peeling/chipping off on the corners and the center, there were no discernible difference in performance. I spoke to my tire guy and he says it is a common sight on the Michelin Pilot Sport 3 and I am not the first to face this scenario. He said it is due to the rubber compound used and maybe our hot weather here. He did say the peel is more apparent on the sides of my PS3, and I guess it is due to the fact that I usually accelerate out of corners, applying more torque and force to the sides of the tyre.

In conclusion, it is the best tyre I’ve used so far, and its more than sufficient for a street vehicle. The Michelin Pilot Sport 3 is definitely among the top and you won’t go wrong with it. So what do you think I got instead?

Daihatsu YRV Turbo 130 Speedometer

Many people think that the Daihatsu YRV Turbo R speedometer is the coolest meter available for YRV or cars running the K3-VET engine, as it displays upto 220km/h and it is white in colour. Actually, other than being white and displaying upto 220km/h, there’s nothing special about it. It even lights up amber and look the same at night as the normal 180km/h speedometers.


Daihatsu YRV Turbo R Meter Daihatsu YRV Turbo R Speedometer Night

 Daihatsu YRV Turbo R, JDM meter, nothing special.


This is the UK domestic model Daihatsu YRV Turbo 130 meter that displays upto 220km/h and 140mph, and the secret killer feature is the built in RPM shift light! At around 5500rpm the green LED lights up asking you to switch gears. If you reach around 6000rpm an additional red LED lights up. This is the stuff found in cars like the Subaru Impreza STi. The best part? It is fully plug and play and compatible with all Daihatsu YRV Turbo.

I believe right now I am the only person to have this meter in Malaysia, considering Daihatsu did not sell many Daihatsu YRV Turbo 130 in UK, so it is definitely very limited, especially to be able to get just the meter. Having the shift light function makes it really cool, especially when used together with the tiptronic you will know exactly when to shift up when you are doing hard driving.

Drop by our Facebook page if you want to find out more about the meter.

Daihatsu K3-VE, K3-VET & 3SZ-VE Cylinder Head Differences & Upgrades

The Daihatsu K3-VE engine was introduced in year 2000 on the Daihatsu Terios/Perodua Kembara and used in various other Daihatsu/Toyota cars, including the 2004 Daihatsu Sirion M301S, and later in the 2005 Perodua Myvi. The Daihatsu K3-VET engine is similar to the non-turbo sibling, with the same engine block and cylinder head, and the difference being the lower compression ratio, turbocharger and some minor changes on the engine block itself.

In 2007, Daihatsu quietly upgraded the K3-VE, which featured:

  • Bigger intake & exhaust ports on the cylinder head
  • Bigger valves
  • Re-designed intake manifold
  • Bigger throttle body
  • Smaller sized spark plugs
  • ECU tuned to reflect the changes

All these changes resulted in better fuel economy and performance while the rest of the engine remained the same. Daihatsu did not differentiate the “new” 2007 K3-VE and the original K3-VE engine, but merely specified different spark plugs for the new 2007 K3-VE engine.

Most improvements on the 2007 K3-VE came from its bigger sibling, the 1.5L 3SZ-VE: but there were still difference in terms of part numbers of the cylinder head. But in the end of year 2008, the K3-VE and the 1.5L 3SZ-VE share the exact same cylinder head, valves, intake manifold, with the only difference being the solenoid and the throttle body. Why the difference? I have absolutely no clue.

Daihatsu 1.3L K3-VE Cylinder Head          Daihatsu 1.5L 3SZ-VE Cylinder Head

NOTE: Yes I know it says TOYOTA on the schematics, but I couldn’t get Daihatsu documents so Toyota ones will do. Remember Toyota OWNS Daihatsu. 

This upgrade was applied to ALL K3-VE engines, which includes the ones in the Perodua Myvi. Effectively, it is like a port & polish and enlarged valve upgrade done by the factory, which means balanced performance and efficiency throughout the RPM range.

In summary

  • 2007: K3-VE was improved with new head, bigger valves, bigger intake manifold, throttle body, new spark plug spec.
  • 2008 year end: K3-VE was given the exact same cylinder head part number as the 3SZ-VE engine.
  • If you want to upgrade your K3-VET, it is better to find a complete 2007+ K3-VE cylinder head with intake manifold with a 3SZ-VE throttle body, or a complete 3SZ-VE cylinder head, intake manifold and throttle body.
  • Port and polishing a K3-VET head will NOT be as good as a K3-VE/3SZ-VE head due to bigger intake & exhaust valves on the newer heads.
  • The K3-VE & 3SZ-VE has a different throttle body and different idle speed controller.
  • The K3-VET engine is compatible with the 3SZ-VE throttle body and idle speed controller. The throttle body and idle speed controller from K3-VE is NOT COMPATIBLE.
  • If you have a 2007+ K3-VE, I will do a bolt on turbo instead of swapping with a K3-VET.


Review: Armor All Auto Glass Cleaner


Myvi Turbo was in the workshop for 2 months, and under the care of my mechanic, he was kind to clean the car, only problem it was a dirty oily rag, which left an oily film on all the glass and mirrors. Under certain lighting conditions, especially at night, it impaired my view, with white streaks on the windscreen. While driving at night, the oily rear view mirror caused additional glare when looking behind due to the headlights.

I’m a big fan of Meguiar’s products, but the Meguiar’s NXT Generation Glass Cleaner costs RM45 and the Armor All Auto Glass Cleaner costs RM23.50, so I gave the Armor All a try.


Armor All Auto Glass Cleaner


The only concern was tint damage – I tested and it won’t damage my Llumar tint. Be sure to test on your tint before applying the product on the whole window, just put a small amount of product on a clean microfiber cloth and rub it on an inconspicuous corner of your window, wait and see. The product works perfectly, only cons I can think of is that it doesn’t smell good like Meguiar’s products, and it had bad instructions. If you follow the instructions, you’ll have a coat of the cleaning liquid on your glass and it’ll streak – a case of too much product used.


Follow these instructions and you’ll have streaks on your glass.


To use the Armor All Auto Glass Cleaner correctly:

  1. Spray a small amount of  liquid onto a clean cloth and test on a corner of your glass.
  2. If its OK, spray 3 or 4 small squirts on 1 corner of the cloth and wipe it on the glass.
  3. Immediately buff off the product using the dry part of the cloth.
  4. Work in small sections.

By using a very small amount I cleaned all the glass and mirrors in the car. This bottle is going to last me a long time.

Armor All Auto Glass Cleaner 
Performance 5/5
Price 5/5
Ease of Use 4/5
Instructions 0/5

Important Fix: Radiator T-Joint for YRV K3-VET

For those of you driving Daihatsu YRV or K3-VET swaps, please take note of the T-joint for your radiator hose. For some reason the original K3-VET is using a plastic T-joint which will most definitely fail over time. The Perodua Myvi, Daihatsu Boon & Toyota Passo running K3-VE is using a metal T-joint.

If this part fails when you are driving and you don’t notice, your engine will overheat very fast!

Top: From K3-VE Bottom: From K3-VET

Skunk2 60mm Universal Muffler & Silencer Review

I was in the United States for a business trip. So guess what I hauled back?

Skunk2 60mm Universal Muffler

This is the Skunk2 60mm stainless steel muffler.  I chose this muffler after checking out several before & after dynos for both NA and turbocharged cars. You can check them out here:

2008 Honda Civic Si Power Pages

Honda Fit/Jazz Performance Modifications

Subaru WRX Exhaust Dyno Comparison

In all the tests, the Skunk2 muffler performed among the top, and it’s a solid performer on various different cars. However, the Skunk2 muffler is very loud based on the feedback from users especially the Honda community.

The Skunk2 muffler has a full stainless steel construction, with a straight through design as you can see in the picture. The Skunk2 plaque is welded on to the muffler and overall construction is very good.

The tip: how you tell its a Skunk2


Skunk2 straight through muffler baby!

My previous setup was a DSPORT 2” full stainless steel mandrel bent exhaust system with a mid muffler and a rear exhaust muffler. The new setup is 2.3” mild steel with welded joints with only the Skunk2 rear muffler.

I’ve been using this setup for 5 months now, and it is really loud especially on the highway. The sound is not high pitched or raspy, but more of a deep low drone.  This is already expected based on the feedbacks I’ve read. But, it is really irritating when you’re cruising. Seriously, your ears will be humming with the low drone.

So I got the Skunk2 silencer, which looked like this.

The Skunk2 Silencer Really Works!

I was sceptical if it is able to silence the exhaust, but boy it really silenced the noise a lot! No more irritating drone! Just slide the silencer in and secure it with the nut and screw provided. If you’re going to the track or just want to be irritating, simply loosen the nut and screw and pull the silencer out.

The Myvi Turbo is punchier with the new exhaust system, and easier to hit boost cut, which is an indication that it is freer flowing and less restrictive. Still, the DSPORT setup is better if you want a stock vehicle feel and quietness, but this is definitely more sporty.

LED License Plate Wedge Light Bulbs

Upgraded the rear license plate light bulbs to LEDs. It’s an easy DIY job, guide below.

Bought a pair of cheap T10 wedge LEDs.


There’s 1 screw on each lens, use a Philips screwdriver, unscrew and lift the lens out.


Firmly pull the bulb out, if you just drove the car with lights on, be careful as the bulb can get quite hot.


Push the T10 wedge LED firmly in. Take note of which way you put it in cause on my set of LED there’s polarity.


Turn on the lights and see if it’s working, if its not, put it the other way. Here you can see the difference in the color temperature of the bulb vs LED. Change both sides and you’re done.


Here’s a night shot. The LEDs I bought were cheapos, so they weren’t really white and more towards blue/purplish. I find it pretty cool so that’s okay and it matches the LED tail lights and LED third brake light.

Changing Myvi Third Brake Light to LEDs

For some reason the third brake light bulb burns quite easily on the Myvi. The first bulb burned 2 years into ownership of the Myvi. I had it changed for a Polarg Japan one which cost RM35.

Fast forward 4 years it burned again. This time I was determined to find a permanent solution by changing it to LEDs. Bought a 16 LED plug and play kit, not knowing it was a blinking type, there’s another 4 LED kit, which is a normal non-blinking one.

Changing the third brake light bulb on the Myvi is very easy, step by step guide below:

1.There’s a clip on the left & right, push the middle in and pull the whole clip out.


2. Slide the bracket off, there’s a bolt on the left & right, open it with a size 10 wrench.

3. Twist the bulb holder and the lens assembly will come off.

4. Firmly pull the bulb & replace it with a new bulb, or the LED kit wedge.

The bulb gets really hot during operation, which is why the bulb socket looks so toasty. I highly recommend changing it to LEDs.

5. Before reassembly check that the bulb is working. With the LED kit you can do confirmation like this.

6. My LED kit included a clear lens to replace the original red one. Just lift the tabs on the right & left gently, and pop the new one in.

7. Lens fully assembled.

8. Completed installation. The clear lens looks clean & goes well with the car. I like it.