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Views upon ECU remapping and brabus chip

Discussion in 'General Mercedes-Benz Related Discussion' started by David-Butter, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. NISFAN

    NISFAN Senior Member

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    No, re-mapping only really works with Turbo charged engines. It is no rocket science, the added power comes almost entirely from higher boost pressure so not likely to make much difference to your N/A Rex.:(

    What makes me laugh are the claims of earlier boost (lower boost threshold- a function of physical turbo matching), and the wild % increase that you hear for power and torque and fuel economy. And just when I thought I had heard everything, I now hear that mapping can drop your revs by 2-300rpm at a steady speed. Wow, I think the bosses of messrs Alonso, Hamilton, Button, etc would be very keen to get in touch with these engine management geniuses.

    Re-mapping works well, and a ECU re-flash is the best way to do it, much better than those plug in boxes that intercept and fool the ECU into doing something different, plus as a business it is the most lucrative, as once you have cracked the manufacturers coded maps cells, you can map one vehicle and forever more cut and paste that map into hundreds of same engine vehicles. Charge £400-600 a pop for 30 minutes work, which involving no replacing of parts. A proverbial gold mine.

    I say crack the code, but most of the goons out there buy the cracked code from a 3rd parties in the first place, as they aren't bright enough to figure it out themselves.

    Once you have the capability to do all this, all you have to do is convince potential customers that it is not detectable (absolutely incorrect on any ECU that I know of), and that you don't have to worry about the warranty being void.

    The added bonus is you can re-charge the same customers when MB (for example) re-flash the ECU with their latest maps, which happens from time to time during regular servicing, which wipes the re-map.

    Now, where is my OBD cable and my laptop :D
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2010
  2. wemorgan

    wemorgan Senior Member

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    I agree with some of the above, but my remap cost me £117 and I can have it remapped free if the OEM wipes it.
     
  3. hawk20

    hawk20 Senior Member

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    Well said. But I doubt if the zealots will want to hear such a logical set of arguments.
     
  4. st4

    st4 Banned

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    EVO magazine had a very good article on the "ask the experts section" re remapping....

    The gist of it is was

    Cars are given the standard mapping to pass very strict new car emissions laws that are passed world wide. No ifs, not buts. The car needs to be able to pass MOT tests/equivalent yearly tests as it gets older. The mapping on the car is designed so as engine ages/beds in and components age/deteriorate it is still capable of passing these tests.

    New car emission tests are often stricter than MOT/equivalent. In other words the remapper has a much larger set of criteria to play with than the manufacturer does.

    The technical expert went on to say that although the engines and components of cars have a large tolerance and can take the additional power (well torque) it still compromises durability as again, the factory settings have catered for maximum durability to see the car say through a 10-20year life cycle. In the remapping world this is not a major factor, but for the manufacturer it is....

    The expert indicated remapping can produce better MPG as well, as it facilitates leaner running but at the expense of greater NOx emissions-failure of emissions regs for new cars.
     
  5. jubhi

    jubhi Senior Member

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    NISFAN you seem to know your stuff....

    Can you explain please the main advantage of the Remap over a Plug and Play. Brabus unit is Plug and Play and so what do you think are the downsides? Only downside I see of the Brabus is the cost!!

    The way I see it is at least with Plug and Play your map cannot be overwritten and you are not messing with the car's original map?
     
  6. gfhowland

    gfhowland Active Member

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    Looks like the 'expert' answers all doubters then, a re-map is good for power and mpg at the expense of wear and tear and emissions.

    Damn shame I cant remap the RX-8, a bit more economy wouldnt go a-miss... towing a tanker behind me is seriously hampering performance :rolleyes:
     
  7. st4

    st4 Banned

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    Increased rail pressure, injector wear and tear, rise in insurance premium.

    Having had the pleasure of the V6 CDi in a 211 (so heavier and less powerful than the E350cdi coupe) you have to be bonkers IMHO to want more performance, and I do not drive slow.
     
  8. Miffy

    Miffy Senior Member

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  9. NISFAN

    NISFAN Senior Member

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    Yes the Brabus one is costly, however I would imagine that part of it's cost goes towards a fund to cover the increased risk of component failure you would get from a modified vehicle.

    Unfortunately, like many performance add ons, insurance underwriters not only assess the risk of the modifications, but also put the driver into a higher risk 'level' aswell. The understanding is that if someone wants to chip their car, they are likely to be a 'hard' driver in the first place. Double whammy :(

    Anyway, in order to answer your question I would have to explain a little about how an ECU map works.
    Each map has a main table (a table is a group of cells let's say 32x32, if you use excel, they are laid out in a similar fashion), on one axis it will have engine RPM, and the other axis it will have reference to engine load.
    When the engine is running the ECU gets fed with both analogue and digital signals from various sensors in the engine bay, including engine revs, and a measurement of engine load (MAP/MAF sensors). Also temperatures, pressures, etc etc
    Hundreds of times a second the ECU plots the Speed/Load values into the table we discussed above, and where the two columns/rows cross on the map it uses the value in that cell to fire the injectors. Hope your still with me on this. :D

    Sounds simple enough?..............well no it gets worse.

    In order to make further adjustments to the injector pulse values, there are many more tables overlaid over the main table. These others will control cold engine enrichment, turbo boost pressure, ambient temperature conditions, actual manifold temps, diesel temperature, etc etc.
    So, the final injector pulse will be the combined values after the data has gone through all the various layers of tables.
    It is important to have this complexity to ensure the engine runs optimally in all possible conditions a typical engine will be subject to. The OEM's spend hundreds of hours getting these tables right.

    Now, a re-map by flashing the ECU, is one where the physical numbers contained in the cells of the various tables are changed with new values. Importantly, only the values that need changing can be changed. This means that the R&D MB or any other put into getting the engine to run right at a particular ambient condition remains intact. The ECU also functions exactly as it should, the only difference is at 2450rpm and engine load 73 for example, instead of that cell containing 0.9bar turbo boost pressure it now says 1.1bar, etc etc.

    A tuning box, and there are various complexities of these, generally work by modifying the incoming signals the ECU would see from the engine, in order to get a different result.
    For example, the ECU controls the turbo boost pressure, and the map dictates that it should be set at 0.9bar. The electronic plug-in increases power by increasing the turbo boost by 0.2bar, so it intercepts the signal from the engine saying 0.9bar and replaces it with a signal that says 0.7bar. The ECU thinks it's running 0.2bar down, so then changes the turbo vanes and increases the boost upto what it thinks is now 0.9bar, which is actually 1.1bar now thanks to the tuning box.

    The problem with the tuning box is that it is a crude device, and does not adjust it's compensations for all the conditions an engine will run in. This means it could be running dangerously close to the operating limit in certain conditions, but fine in others. More modern tuning boxes do have more complex microprocessors in them and do adjust to certain main parameters, but still not as complete a package as an ECU re-flash method.

    Having said that, a monkey with a laptop can totally screw up the re-flash method too :neutral:

    Sorry for the long post, but hope it helps.
     
  10. jubhi

    jubhi Senior Member

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    Thanks NISFAN for this detailed insight into remapping/chipping. Think that is enough information to put me off getting a cheap plug in Unit and maybe the only one I would consider now is the Brabus Unit as I'm sure that is probably advanced as it can get given the cost of it and MB covering you under warranty. Will wait till the Brabus one comes down in price a bit, at £2200 it seems to steep.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2010
  11. gfhowland

    gfhowland Active Member

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  12. gfhowland

    gfhowland Active Member

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    Interesting though, take the Toyota D-CAT engine - you can't remap them without a blow torch, tweezers and a chizel, but companies such as Lindop Toyota have been selling add on boxes with very good feedback for some time now. They do use high power microprocessors and measure not just the rail pressure, boost pressure and other variables too, and their power quotes are more in line with Toyota's, ie. D-CAT 150Hp goes to 176Hp, which is about the same as the D-CAT 177. So I would hazard a guess is that if you go for any re-map or external box, you choose a high quality product from a reputable company who cares as much about your car as the manufacturer.
     
  13. NISFAN

    NISFAN Senior Member

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    My pleasure:D

    Yep, the advice I would give is to go to a reputable company whether you go the plug-in route or re-flash. There are a number of big boys in the game in the UK that seem to have the professionalism and resources required.

    I certainly wouldn't use a company that uses poor english, and worse than that poor technical references on their website. The layman however is perhaps not likely to pick up on the technical faux paus made in the web site content, but could you trust a company that can't even be bothered to run their website text through a spell checker, to enter numbers correctly into your ECU. Especially when if you mixed two numbers around it could be game over for your VNT Turbo.
     
  14. EStrauss

    EStrauss New Member

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    Hi David,
    I read all the threads with some interest,

    Would you have any further advice to someone considering a remap, as you have had good use and experience since you last communication on remapping.

    Please let me know I am interested

    Thanks
     

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