(BPT) – Chances are you chose your current car or truck because of specific features or performance capabilities. These vary from vehicle to vehicle, and what one automobile may have, the other may lack. Thankfully, there are many ways to enhance the performance of your car or truck. According to the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), upgrading stock parts with aftermarket versions can instantly improve your car’s performance and is relatively simple to do. Many companies offer different options for your car, so do your research and install the part that best suits your needs.

Replace the air filter: An air filter helps remove dirt and particles from the air that your engine uses to burn fuel. Clean air results in better gas mileage and improved acceleration. Filters are also designed to allow the correct amount of air into the engine for optimal performance. By increasing the amount of clean air that enters your engine, you increase its air-fuel mixture, resulting in improved performance.

To increase the amount of clean air entering your engine, simply replace the stock filter with a performance aftermarket air filter, which will help enhance horsepower, acceleration and torque, and may also provide better fuel economy and longer engine life. Additionally, some aftermarket air filters don’t need to be changed as often as stock filters because they don’t get clogged as quickly, and some you can clean yourself and put them back to use.

Upgrade the exhaust: After improving your engine combustion with an aftermarket air filter, upgrade your car’s exhaust system for better performance. If your exhaust pipe is too small for the amount of combusted air that is now exiting the cylinders, it will lead to an increase in air resistance and create back pressure. By simply replacing the stock muffler you will create better airflow. To further enhance performance, have a qualified expert installer add aftermarket headers and bigger pipes.

Reduce weight: By just lowering the overall weight of a car, you will enhance its performance, especially in regard to acceleration. An easy way to reduce weight is to replace the stock wheels, which are typically made of steel, with alloy models. Alloy wheels will not only lower the weight but also enhance the look of your car. Other easy ways to reduce weight are by using ceramic brakes and running a lighter aftermarket battery.

Almost every part of your car can be replaced by an aftermarket version made of lighter material, such as carbon fiber or aluminum, so look into what part swap will give you the biggest weight savings for your buck.

Switch oil: Something as simple as switching to a higher-quality aftermarket oil can enhance performance. A higher-quality oil reduces friction between the moving parts of an engine, resulting in less power needed to operate. It may also do a better job of dissipating heat, which can extend the life of your engine.

Research: The aftermarket industry offers many choices to enhance the performance of your car, so be sure to research what’s available. Manufacturers introduce new products annually at the SEMA Show, the leading trade show for businesses in the automotive industry. Consumers are able to connect with some of these businesses at the official SEMA Show after-party, also known as SEMA Ignited, where one-of-a-kind custom vehicle builds featuring the newest aftermarket products parade out of the convention center before making their way to the ultimate car show open to the public. For more information, visit www.semaignited.com.