Holley includes a wideband...
Holley includes a wideband O2 sensor, which requires a bung to be installed in the header. This is what makes self-tuning possible as the ECU will constantly correct the fuel curve to achieve the target air/fuel ratio.
"The EFI has a self-tuning feature for the base fuel table, which is by far the most critical and time-consuming portion of the EFI tuning process," says Doug Flynn of Holley. "The self-tuning feature works on feedback from the wideband oxygen sensor, and it will adjust the fuel curve to maintain a target air/fuel ratio under all speed and load conditions. The user needs to drive the vehicle around and the self-tuning function will very quickly modify the base fuel table. This can also be done on a dyno or at a racetrack. Other parameters, such as acceleration enrichment-the accelerator pump function-can be easily increased or decreased if necessary via the handheld tuner. Most users will find the calibrations created by the Wizard will not require any modifications to the various adjustable parameters, but there is always the option to do so. The user can change the desired air/fuel ratio for idle, cruise, and WOT to optimize power and economy independently."
Smooth. That's the best way to describe how the new Holley Avenger EFI system made the Pontiac 400ci feel when compared to the carburetor induction system it replaced. The throttle response was exceptional and the car will break the tires loose from a 25-mph roll with ease. Giordano concurred, and he had the benefit of driving the Firebird before and after the Avenger EFI. He says, "The car runs so much better from idle, and the throttle response is great. It is definitely making more power too with the EFI."
The constant evolution of technology is all around us, and with the next wave of advances always comesincreased capabilities and reduction in cost. The Avenger EFI is proof of that evolution.
A Higher Flying 'Bird
The turn of the key signals the first change: No more pumping the pedal to bring my Bella Blue Bird (after my daughter) to life. The familiar roar fills my ears as she settles into idle sooner than usual. As the 'Bird gets warm, you hear the "self learning" that the Holley Avenger system enables. Literally, you feel the car figuring out the right air/fuel mix. And the learning comes quickly.
A rubber ring slides on top...
A rubber ring slides on top of the TBI, enabling a traditional carburetor air cleaner to be installed.
Out on the road, I punch it a little when getting ready to shift into Second, and whammo, a pleasant surprise: The tires break loose at about 25 mph! The warmed-over 400 has plenty of grunt, thanks to a Ram Air III cam, but the smoothness of the powerband is what really gets your attention now.
Three big differences were apparent within 10 miles: The familiar smell of gas is reduced to barely a whisper of petrol essence, the power is not "chunky," it just keeps coming ... and then the gravy ... while my speedo and tach needles were whipping around, my fuel gauge didn't move at all!
The E in EFI stands for electronic, but it could also stand for "efficient," literally defined as "performing in the best manner possible with the least waste."
A fuel pump and two fuel filters...
A fuel pump and two fuel filters are included in the Holley Avenger system. The instructions recommend placing a fuel filter before and after the fuel pump for best performance.
I have always clung to the simplicity and purity of old-school hot rodding: The less clutter and technology in the engine compartment, the better. But I have to say, the Avenger EFI is barely noticeable under the air cleaner, and could easily be mistaken for a two-barrel. All of the wiring and the module were easily snaked around and buried in the subtle black meshing, and the new handheld tuner makes it easier to tune than any carb. After all, you tune the system without any wrenching! To be sure, the driveability seems better so far than any of the carbs I've used over the years. Bottom line: More throttle response, more tire smoke, and much more time enjoying the car between fill-ups! What is better than that? -Chris Cuomo
The only parts not included...
The only parts not included for this conversion are for the fuel feed line, and fittings to go along with it. It took just one call to the local parts distributor to procure some Earl's plumbing pieces. Schlitz added an Earl's -AN6 feed line and a few fittings for the fuel system.
The handheld programmer requires...
The handheld programmer requires just four bits of information to be inputted into the ECU. Holley has pre-loaded base programs, but the handheld also allows certain parameters to be adjusted manually for specific applications, like desired idle rpm, and different air/fuel ratios. The four questions for the setup Wizard are: What is the part number of the system purchased? Is it a small-block (under 409 ci) or big-block (over 410 ci)? What type of camshaft (stock, mild, performance, or I don't know) is in the engine? And the final question, will the ECU will be controlling the ignition timing?