Nowadays the engine power and overall performance of most vehicles is limited, not because of any specific mechanical factor, but because of the software that runs the so-called engine control unit (ECU).
What is the ECU?
At the same time you’re driving your car, various computer algorithms within the ECU run behind the scenes and affect all kinds of parameters, which includes ignition timing, the ratio of the air and fuel and turbocharging boost pressure.
It is common that the manufacturers of new cars set limits to those parameters in order to meet certain product advertising and marketing objectives (related to power level and fuel emissions, among other things). This results in new cars rarely being completely optimised for ultimate overall performance.
How much does chiptuning cost?
So if you need greater pulling power or are seeking mpg improvements you can consider chiptuning your ECU. Chiptuning (also referred to as ‘chipping’, ‘tuning’ or ‘remapping’) is a process whereby the software in a vehicle’s ECU is altered or replaced, thereby changing how it performs and potentially releasing its full potential.
The costs of chiptuning vary depending on the tuning company and the way the chiptuning is carried out. Back in the days a circuit board or chip in the ECU needed to be swapped.
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However these days the new software is often installed through your automobile’s diagnostic port via a computer or laptop. In many cases you can even order custom-made chip tuning files online, download them and install them in your ECU yourself.
This makes chiptuning these days a lot cheaper, plus you don’t need to travel to the company’s premises. The type of car you have determines the price of the chiptuning file, which can cost from around €20,- up to €100,-.
Benefits of ECU remapping
If you use a reputable company such as MyChiptuningfiles there are enormous benefits to be had by chipping your car. The main benefits of ECU remapping are: better performance, more torque at lower RPM which makes for a smoother ride, and a greater fuel efficiency.
Some of the benefits include:
- 10 to 30 more horsepower and 10 to 40 Nm more torque for petrol non-turbo engines
- Around 30 to 80 more horsepower and 40 to 150 Nm more torque for turbo-petrol and turbo-diesel engines
- 2 to 8 percent better fuel efficiency for turbo-petrol or turbo-diesel engines
If you are a farmer and want to reduce your production costs you can even order chiptuning files for your tractor engine online. This will save you a lot of fuel and time in the long run!