There are four main reasons for converting a car to an aftermarket ECU:
To provide greater tuning flexibility (although some original ECUs can be retuned, not all can, and often this requires specialist tools)
To allow changes to engine hardware (eg removal of the airflow meter, changing to larger injectors etc)
To provide more advanced functions that the factory ECU does not support (for example, adding in flat shifting, anti-lag or launch control for increased performance)
To provide increased diagnostics and datalogging than the factory ECU can provide (for example, additional temperature, pressure or speed sensors).
The additional tuning flexibility is required to extract the most power and torque from the engine. While manufacturers sometimes do this well from the factory, in general they tune for a wide range of conflicting goals, such as fuel economy, low emissions, high torque, good drivabiltiy and long engine life. Thus, when tuning a race car with the overarching goal being torque and power, the tuner will arrive at a different tune from what was done by the original ECU, and make more power in the process. An Adaptronic ECU allows the tuner to do this.
Another limitation of using the original ECU is the limitation of original engine hardware. With significant increases in power (for example, due to increased boost, or applying boost to a previously naturally aspirated engine), the original airflow meter may reach its limit of reading. Simiarly, the injectors may not provide sufficient fuel flow to suit the new engine configuration. A fully programmable ECU such as the Adaptronic range allows you to use a MAP sensor instead of an airflow sensor, and use any standard fuel injector – from original size up to very high flow rates.
The Adaptronic ECU range supports flat shifting and launch control, while the e1280s ECU also supports antilag. These features allow more controlled launches, faster gearchanges and less turbo lag, increasing your speed at the track.
However one of the main benefits of using an Adaptronic ECU, especially the e1280s Super ECU, is being able to monitor engine parameters, take data logs and analyse your engine systems. For example, adding additional temperature sensors to the intake system allows the enthusiast to measure the air temperatures at the air intake, after the turbocharger and after the intercooler; thereby assisting the enthusiast to determine the next best modification to make to their car.
An ECU isn’t a product that makes power; it’s a tuning tool. On an unmodified engine, it will only make power that was “left on the table” by the manufacturer.
However on a turbocharged engine, an ECU will allow you to increase the boost while being able to control the tune. One bottleneck when turning up the boost is the injector size; fitting an ECU allows you to change the injectors and be able to correct the tune. It also removes the bottleneck of the factory airflow meter by converting to a MAP sensor based tune (also called “speed density”).
The additional power that you can make depends on other supporting modifications such as stronger rotating assembly, freer flowing exhaust and intake systems and so on.
Again, an ECU is a tuning tool. It allows the tuner to alter the air-fuel ratio and ignition timing. So the whole point is that the ECU allows the tuner to affect the fuel economy!
Normally what happens is that some modifications that you perform to the engine will throw the factory ECU out of tune (for example, fitting larger injectors or changing camshafts); therefore putting on an aftermarket ECU allows you to bring the air-fuel ratio back to where it should be. Therefore on a standard engine, there’s no reason you can’t get the same fuel economy as a factory car, or possibly slightly better.
In practice, other modifications that you do such as higher overlap camshafts will increase the fuel consumption.
Please see our Dealers page.
When you Download Eugene the software comes with basemaps located here on your PC: This PC > Local Disk (C:) > Adaptronic Engine Management > Eugene > Basemaps > Modular or Select. The Downloads Page also includes all ECU basemaps.
Please watch / read Andy's Flex Fuel blog by clicking here.
Yes; we recommend the Race Technology dashes and loggers. You can also use the Motec dashes via a serial connection, or the Racepak IQ3 CAN format.
Yes, we recommend the Innovate sensor controllers. Our second choice is the Zeitronix units; followed by PLX, AEM, Techedge and M&W.
Select what ECU (eModXXX) you have from the Downloads Page and click on the pinout.pdf. Also If you install Eugene, load the basemap, and under the home tab there is a wiring and installation guide section. This includes an interactive Pin-Out that allows you to label each pin location with a color and name.
In Eugene go to the outputs tab > Injector type. Then Select from the dropdown or select search to pick from the many pre-characterized injectors done by Andy Wyatt. For a more detailed information on selecting injectors read/watch: Selecting injectors for the modular ECUs
It is best to watch/read this blog by Andy Wyatt: Transient throttle conditions and how to set it up on Modular ECUs
Please refer to the: eMod013 S1 Mazda Rx8 "How to page"
Andy has written an article on how to prevent this: Battery Isolators, Kill Switches and Voltage Spikes
Please refer to Andy's written/video blog on this: ECU Grounding Tips