Diesel Tuning

jimmy

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I have received lots of enquiries regarding tuning/chipping diesel engined cars. Seeing as the Road Angel group buy has gone down well here at MBClub, I wondered what the interest amongst diesel owners here would be for increasing power, torque, performance and MPG with a tuning box??

I am looking more at the tuning/piggy back box devices rather than the chip replacements as they are an easy DIY fit and can be easily removed if neccessary. Some of you may remember I had my C180 chipped and when I sold it the chip went with it, a tuning box could be removed and sold or used on another similiar vehicle.

I am very interested in a couple of units and am very impressed by one in particular. Hopefully I will be able to try one out on my own car next week.:D This unit is adjustable and tunable, the one for my car can be adjusted for power gains to suit the car/driver by means of a small screw. The one for the CDi engines can be tuned via laptop whilst driving, now that sounds cool.

I have friends and relatives with Golfs, Passats, Pug 406, E320 Cdi, Sprinter and Freelander who are all interested, if I could be sure of a bit more interest I may decide to become an authorised dealer/fitting station and take on the Midlands area. I have a friendly garage on the estate who have a rolling road so it could work well.

Obviously price and actual gains/claims would be the major deciding fact but who has or would think about increasing the power and enjoyment of their diesel Mercedes?

Some figures:

C250 TD
150hp to 180hp
207ft/lbs to 237ft/lbs

C/E220CDi
150hp to 180hp
252ft/lbs to 281ft/lbs

E320CDi
204hp to 230hp
370ft/lbs to 404ft/lbs !!!:bannana: :bannana:

Basically they are talking 25-30% bhp gains and 15-20 torque gains, driven sensibly:D the mpg should increase.

Interesting.:cool:
 

Richard W

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I would go for something like this. My CDi was turned into a superb car by the addition of a box such as these.

The motor became more responsive, more economical, and best of all it went like stink!:D

Well done Jimmy! Go for it guys - it's worth it:cool:

R
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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Talking to the company today, they strongly recommend fitting a K&N air filter to help the engine breath more easily. A K&N filter will give an extra 5-10bhp alongside the tuning box.:) The unit is guaranteed for 3 years and they do not know of any engine problems resulting from chipping, most people would rightly be concerned with their cars ability to take the extra power, this is'nt a concern with MB's, VW's and Audis etc.

I wasn't considering doing it myself as I am more than happy with the performance from the C250TD. Saying that, I would be very, very interested to see what that extra power and torque would feel like.:D
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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I have been researching 3 companies who all offer very similiar products in that they are all tuning boxes or 'piggy back' boxes. I have decided to go with a company called TD Performance Tuning and have become a distributor. I just received my first order.:)

This is one of the units I ordered for the VW/Audi/Seat/Skoda TDi engines:

golfbox.jpg


This one uses genuine VW/Audi connectors to allow the unit to simply plug into the existing wiring and will take a 90bhp golf to 115bhp, the 110bhp model to 130bhp.

Funnily enough I also ordered one for a C250TD.:D

250box.jpg


The actual tuning box is the same as the VW one, they use the same Bosch fuel injection system, it is only the wiring harness that is different. The Mercedes one has to be wired into the ECU connector by connecting five wires, very simple and not a scary job. I shall be fitting mine tomorrow and getting a rolling road report before and after.

These units have 7 programs or power levels and can be adjusted to your engine and requirements. I shall initially be going for maximum power without making it smoke. Depending on fuel consumption I may leave it or tune it down after a while.

Figures are claimed to give an extra 25bhp for the 250TD.:)

They also do them for many petrol engines including the 230K.
 

GrahamC230K

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Take lots of pics of your install James!

Especially the soldering part!

Going to be interested to see if their power claims are true and if you achieve that on the maximum level 7 setting or before.
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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Whooopppee.......:bannana: :bannana:

Just done it and I have the biggest grin on my face.:D

Full report and pictures later.
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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Pictures as promised.

First thing was to remove the ECU cover to gain access to the main ECU wiring connector.

c250ECU.JPG


The top of the plug is removed to expose the back of the connector, each pin is numbered 1 to 55.

ECUPlug.JPG


On the TD box for the C250 there is a fly lead with five wires that need connecting 'piggy back' style to the appropiate wires on the ECU plug. This could be done by using scotchloks but I wanted to do it properly and soldered the wires on. I carefully pared back 5mm of insulation on each of the wires and soldered the wires on.

ECUConnections.JPG


In this picture you can see I have already connected the thin black and yellow wires and have soldered the blue wire on to the matching wire. Finished off with a piece of insulation tape and reassemble the plug.

Now the fun starts.:D
 

sym

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nice job jimmy !

Now...... who's going to be brave and try one on a petrol engine ??

;) ;) ;)
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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The TD Performance box is adjustable by means of 3 jumper switches that gives seven different power settings and an off position.

With the C250TD the recommended setting is 1,2 or 3, starting on program 2 and moving up to three if there is no smoke.

I started on program 2 and was amazed with the transformation, throttle response is quicker and acceleration really was breathtaking............but there was rather alot of black smoke to be seen in the rear view mirror. I changed to program 1 and the performance is still there with only a little smoke above 4000rpm just before the gear changes when really booting it.

The smoke is only apparent when you allow the engine to rev right round the dial, if you ease off the pedal and allow the gearbox to change up to the next gear the smoke does not appear.

As I have said the performance really is amazing, I don't need to press the pedal so hard to get the same performance. On the way home I pulled onto the sliproad of the A14 behind a CLK230 I pulled out to overtake and to my delight he decided to try and outrun me. Note that I said TRY, for he could not pull away from me and I could hear his engine screaming away so I knew he was trying.:D

I could not quite overtake him as we ran out of slip road so I let him go in front. We got off at the same junction and we had another go and I was right behind him all the way to triple figures. He pulled into a layby and must have been surprised to see TURBODIESEL on my tailgate as I went past.:p

Needless to say I am delighted. I spoke to TD about the black smoke, I thought it must be due to overfuelling and the black smoke was unburnt diesel. TD say that the smoke is caused by the carbon being blown out of the cat and exhaust system from the extra power. This black smoke should stop after a week or two and I can move upto program 2 or 3. Hmmmmm not totally convinced on that theory.:confused:

I did not have time to get on the rolling road today but hopefully will be having a session tomorrow so I will post the before and after results for you.

I am meeting the folks from TD this evening as they are exhibiting at the Bug Fest at Santa Pod this weekend and staying locally. I have lots of questions and will be getting more stock from them.
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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Originally posted by sym
nice job jimmy !

Now...... who's going to be brave and try one on a petrol engine ??

;) ;) ;)

It's happening on Saturday.:D :D :D

Any guesses??
 

Steve_Perry

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Good one Jimmy :cool: great pics of the install too. :rock: I know you've had a hike in performance will the chip give you any gains in economy?

One other question, if left in place would the MB Star diagnostics computer notice that an interloper had been piggybacked onto the standard ECU?

S.
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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Originally posted by Steve_Perry
Good one Jimmy :cool: great pics of the install too. :rock: I know you've had a hike in performance will the chip give you any gains in economy?

One other question, if left in place would the MB Star diagnostics computer notice that an interloper had been piggybacked onto the standard ECU?

S.

In theory the economy will improve if I don't use that extra power for the grin factor all the time, more power and torque means the engine will work less hard and use less fuel to maintain the same speed.

The TD box can easily be removed as the fly lead has a serial port type plug and socket that connects to the box so it can be removed by simply taking the cover off the ecu and unplugging the unit. It is possible to wire up the positive feed to the box through a switch so you can have a standard mode and switch it on to have a sports mode. I was thinking of doing this and having a switch on the dash, possibly using an OE switch on the dash. But then you can easily control it with your right foot.:)

I forgot to mention I can now wheelspin from a standing start and even did a small burnout....................but then my sensible head reminded me of the cost of tyres.
 

sym

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Originally posted by jimmy

I forgot to mention I can now wheelspin from a standing start and even did a small burnout....................but then my sensible head reminded me of the cost of tyres.

:eek: :eek: :eek:
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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Just returned from a session on the rolling road. Did a total of four power runs. The results are very, very good.

Standard run without the TD Performance Tuning box gave a peak power of 117Kw this equates to 152bhp, MB claim 150bhp:)

We then ran various tests with different settings on the TD box, setting one gave the best power output at 139Kw or 181bhp.:bannana: :bannana:

Setting 2 increased the power output very marginally but created alot of smoke. Setting 3 gave a slightly lower output and obscene amounts of thick black smoke.:mad: So setting one it is, this gives the maximum power with only a little smoke at full throttle.

I hope you guys who are coming tomorrow will be as pleased as I am, but remember the turbodiesels always see better gains. I would hope the C230K would see a better gain than their claimed 17bhp, thats what I am expecting from the C200. I thought that a supercharged engine would see similiar gains to a turbo engine.

Looking forward to tomorrow, the rolling road is booked for 11am.
 
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jimmy

jimmy

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You might be interested in some revised performance figures. All measured with my CD player counter and the seat of my pants.:D

0-60mph - very close to 8 seconds (between 8 and 9 but closer to 8)

I did 4 runs on the way home, ASR off, holding it on the brakes and raising the revs until the power beats the rear brakes and the wheels start spinning :D :D release the brakes, press resume on the CD player, floor the accelerator and hold on tight, flippin unbelievable, would love to do a run at the Pod now.:)

What is the best way to get a really quick start with an auto? Was I doing it right?
 

GrahamC230K

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Originally posted by jimmy
You might be interested in some revised performance figures. All measured with my CD player counter and the seat of my pants.:D

0-60mph - very close to 8 seconds (between 8 and 9 but closer to 8)

I did 4 runs on the way home, ASR off, holding it on the brakes and raising the revs until the power beats the rear brakes and the wheels start spinning :D :D release the brakes, press resume on the CD player, floor the accelerator and hold on tight, flippin unbelievable, would love to do a run at the Pod now.:)

What is the best way to get a really quick start with an auto? Was I doing it right?


Sounds like your launch theory is good.


For our petrol engines does the level 3 maximum still apply or did the supplier offer different advice?
 

sym

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quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by jimmy

I did 4 runs on the way home, ASR off, holding it on the brakes and raising the revs until the power beats the rear brakes and the wheels start spinning release the brakes, press resume on the CD player, floor the accelerator and hold on tight, flippin unbelievable, would love to do a run at the Pod now.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

...... all on your <a-hem!> private runway, I assume !

Any rubber left on the rears ?

S.
 

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