Remap or Tuning Box for More Power and Better Fuel Economy

Today’s engines are run by computer. The ECU (engine control unit) makes thousands of decisions per second about fuelling, how much air to supply, how much turbo to use etc., affecting the power and economy of your engine. For many reasons including marketing, poor fuel quality in some parts of the world (and poor maintenance), manufacturers ‘de-tune’ your engine before it even leaves the factory, meaning 99% of us never get the performance or the economy our engines are truly capable of. You will notice this when you’re driving and you get ‘flat spots’ or lack of responsiveness when you pull out to overtake, or when you struggle up hills or round sharp bends.

A remap (chip tuning) or a tuning box can release the power and economy that are built in but repressed by the manufacturer.


A ‘remap’ is a replacement program for the ECU. It can change all of the instructions that determine the way your engine runs. Remapping can be applied to petrol engines and diesel engines, though it is most effective on turbo-diesels and turbo petrol engines. The average turbo-diesel can expect a gain of 30hp to 50hp as well as up to 20% more torque. It is common for this extra power to actually deliver MPG improvements; typically around 5% to 10%, but in the case of some commercial vehicles up to 20% is not unheard of. Many drivers get an extra 50 miles or more per tank of fuel. Most modern vehicles can be remapped in an hour or two through the diagnostic port inside the car.

Tuning Box

A Tuning Box can only be used with diesel engines. A tuning box modifies only the fuelling. So why would you choose a tuning box? A tuning box is still a very effective way of improving MPG and power, and may be the only option because a remap is not possible or practical for a particular vehicle. It will still give you significant improvements over the original tuning, and is a practical and effective way of cutting your overall motoring costs and improving your driving enjoyment. Tuning boxes can be fitted by the vehicle owner or by an installer if you are not confident.

How can I get better MPG while I also get more power?

Optimum MPG comes from engine efficiency. When an engine is de-tuned by the manufacturer for the reasons stated above, we suffer the consequences.

More power allows you to drive more efficiently. You already know that revving the engine hard will waste fuel, and that driving up hill in low gear isn’t fuel-efficient. It therefore makes sense that if you’re getting more power from the same engine, and you can change into higher gears faster, or stay in higher gears for longer, you save fuel compared to when you were working your engine harder to do the same thing.

Remap or Tuning box? The choice is now yours.

Performance Tuning a Car – What to Know

Did you know that getting your car tuned as per the owner’s manual can contribute to better mileage and help you save close to 15 cents per gallon? Tune ups or major services are undertaken by authorized auto dealers every two years or 30,000 miles. Most car drivers prefer to handover their car to an expert for a tune up so they can replace the necessary parts and ensure that the engine runs in top condition at all times.

When you have decided to get your car tuned, check for dirt in the air filters as replacing one might show a marked increase in gas mileage, almost up by 10 percent. To improve the performance of your vehicle, you should use manufacturer’s grade motor oil alone. If you find “Energy Conserving” on the American Petroleum Institute (API) performance symbol you are assured that it will improve fuel economy and has friction reducing additives. Check your tires during tune up and ensure that it is inflated and aligned as well. This also helps make driving safe. For any doubts on the pressure of your tyres, you can consult the owner’s manual or check with an auto parts consultant. You need to examine the spark plugs and the wires as well to ensure that they are fine and don’t need a replacement during tuning. Check your battery and add distilled water if required. Apart from that, check other fluids under the hood and add them if necessary. Oil and oil filters need to be changed if it has been 3000 miles since the last time you changed it.

Tuning Turbo Engines

You can replace the existing turbo with a larger unit or even fit a second turbo depending on your power requirements. You can match the exhaust and intake compression impellers to your air needs and notice a dramatic improvement in the power band. A stock OEM turbo casing will help hybridise the turbo.

Tune Your Car – Maximize Performance

If you are wondering how you can crank more power into your car’s engine, tuning it is a great option. For instance, performance chips help increase torque. You can even choose a power programmer for increased horsepower and fuel economy. Look out for signs that your car needs a tune up including knocking (when the engine us under load), poor mileage, stalling or exhaust odour. Unperformed maintenance can cause problems at start up also. All these issues can be addressed when you tune your car.

Click here to learn more about how turbo supercharger kits can help you get the maximum performance out of your car’s engine. Professional advice from the dyno tuning experts at Buckhead Imports will help turn your car into a high performance vehicle.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Twin Turbo Kits

The first gasoline powered car was invented by Karl Benz of Germany in 1885, and only 20 years later the first turbocharger was invented by Swiss engineer, Alfred Buchi. But unlike twin turbo kits of today, the first turbocharger was not intended for cars, but for large diesel engines on ships and airplanes. They were later used on diesel trucks, but it was not until the late 1970’s that the first turbocharger was successfully used on a car. Any guesses what that was? You are correct if you said a Mercedes Benz!

Since then turbo’s have been added to almost any type of car, many added later in the form of turbo and twin turbo kits. Many people think these types of kits are only for guys and gals who want souped up, high powered engines that make a lot of noise. But that is not necessarily true, there are advantages and disadvantages to these kits that anybody can consider.


If you need increased power, then it is available for you to use. Depending upon the kit and other add-ons, you can see up to a 40% increase in power. This can be really helpful for passing someone, going up long, steep roads, or if you live in a mountainous area.
Decrease in emissions. Twin turbo kits use the exhaust (wasted energy), to create new energy (compressed air) to power the turbo. Essentially it is a form of recycling. By using the exhaust, instead of just spewing it out, you are decreasing your carbon emissions, which is good for the environment.
With decreased emissions, and recycling the exhaust, you should see an increase in your gas milage, and that is always a plus! It has been estimated that you can get up to 20% better fuel economy. So you are getting both increased power and increased fuel efficiency.
Twin turbo kits, since they have two turbochargers, reduces the lag time that it takes the turbine to spool up and be ready to function properly. Basically, this means that you can get up to turbo speeds quicker than a regular turbo charger.


They do not provide an immediate power boost when you step on the gas. It takes a moment for the boost to kick in, but as mentioned above, this amount of time is reduced with twin turbo kits. When the turbo engine does kick in, you may feel a lurch.
If you have a fuel-injected engine, you may have to do other modifications to increase the fuel ratio to obtain the maximum benefit of the turbocharger. This may be necessary because sometimes in the fuel-injected engine, the system that controls the fuel to oxygen ration can malfunction and not provide enough fuel to the turbo engine. This does not always happen, but is good to be aware of as a first thing to check if you do not get the expected performance.

So, if you are thinking about turbo charging your car, consider the pros and cons when making you decision. But lets face it, if you have a four or six cylinder car, it would be really nice to power up hills and pass other cars, getting up to 1000hp out of your engine. Twin turbo kits could be the answer for you.

Reconditioned Turbos

Well the first thing is to give you a basic introduction to how a turbo works!

The exhaust gases from the engine pass through the turbine housing of the turbo via the turbine blades, this in turn begins to spin the turbine. On the front end of the turbo is a Compressor wheel. This is located in the compressor housing with a pipe which is fed from your air filter. As the shaft begins to spin, so does the compressor wheel. This begins to draw air in from the intake, compressing it into the compressor outlet. The outlet is then fed through the car’s intercooler and then on to the engines inlet ready for the engine cycle.

Here are some of the typical symptoms of a blown turbo…

The most common symptom would be excessive blue smoke; this is caused by the seals on the turbo shaft leaking oil into the exhaust side, or compression side of the turbo. For those of you wondering why it has an oil supply, it’s simply to lubricate the bearings on the turbo shaft.

Another symptom would be loss of power, this can be caused by a number of things, a split intake hose which would create a whistling noise (not to be confused with a whining noise), the waste gate stuck open which would cause the exhaust gas to rush straight down the exhaust manifold and not turn the turbine, therefore the compression side of the turbo is not making any boost pressure. Variable vanes sticking due to a build up of exhaust carbon in the variable vane chamber. Variable vanes operate by allowing exhaust gas to pass through them and spin the turbine, if these vanes are stuck in any way then they will not spin the turbine properly or in some cases not spin it at all, in most cases if you are experiencing loss of power the turbo will need to be taken apart.

Reconditioned turbos offer the same quality as new turbos the difference between a reconditioned turbo and a new turbo is the reconditioned turbo has been striped down and cleaned, then all of the moving parts replaced by new parts. The rest of the turbo parts such as the compressor housing and exhaust housing don’t normally need replaced as they rarely suffer from much wear, so when you get your reconditioned turbo it should look almost like a new turbo.

A new turbo is almost like a reconditioned turbo but the difference is the new turbo has nice new shiny housings and of course the new turbo will be twice the price of the reconditioned turbo, so your better of with a reconditioned turbo as it’s just as good as a new one.

For more information on reconditioned turbos please visit

The 2009 Dodge Sprinter Has a Turbo Diesel Engine

The Dodge Sprinter is actually a model of Mercedes van that is imported to the United States from Germany. It is available in 1500, 2500, and 3500 sizes. This van is commonly used to carry a lot of people or a large payload of heavy materials. It has a larger cargo capacity than the Ford Econoline or Chevrolet Express. It is significantly more expensive than the models in the same class. However, this van also has an extremely high resale value due to it being produced by Mercedes.

The engine in the 2009 Dodge Sprinter is a 3.0L turbo diesel. This engine is significantly smaller than most vans of its size. It only puts out around 154 horsepower and 280 ft lbs of torque. Because of its turbo diesel, this van can pull many heavy loads. However, it will not be able to go up hills as fast as the other manufacturer’s offerings. Although this engine does not have the power that other models do, this van gets incredible gas mileage for its class. This van gets around 20 miles per gallon on the highway and 18 miles per gallon in the city. The mileage numbers on this van are significantly greater than any other vans in its class.

This engine is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. Most vans in this class are mated to a four-speed transmission. Having a five-speed decreases strain on the engine and increases the van’s ability to get up hills. A five-speed transmission also helps to improve the fuel economy. This van’s transmission is where it really shines, because it takes the strain away from the engine.

The 2009 Dodge Sprinter is an excellent decision if you are looking for a full-size van. It has enough power to get down the road. In addition, it gets great fuel economy.

The Compact 2010 Volvo XC70 T6 Turbo Engine

Volvo’s XC70 crossover SUV offers a choice of two six-cylinder engines for 2010. The base 3.2 AWD has a normally aspirated 3.2-liter engine, while the T6 AWD comes standard with a turbocharged 3.0-liter version.

Both engines are part of Volvo’s SI6 (short-inline 6) family, launched in 2006. Thanks to its unusual accessory drive layout, which mounts the power steering pump and air conditioning compressor behind the engine, the SI6 is one of the world’s most compact inline sixes; its overall length is within a few millimeters of Volvo’s earlier inline five. Both SI6 engines have a variable-length intake manifold, 24 valves, and dual overhead camshafts, with variable lift and timing for the intake cam.

Volvo rates the base XC70’s 3.2-liter engine at 235 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque. Although it is smooth and very quiet, many critics find its power and torque unimpressive in the heavy XC70, providing only average acceleration. Fuel economy is not outstanding, either. The EPA rates the 3.2 AWD at 16/22 city/highway, and Volvo recommends premium fuel.

The T6 AWD’s 3.0-liter turbocharged engine is similar to the 3.2, but with a smaller bore and stroke and a lower compression ratio. The 3.0-liter engine features an intercooled twin-scroll turbocharger, with a separate exhaust inlet for each set of three cylinders. The twin-scroll arrangement allows the turbo to ‘spool up’ much more quickly than a conventional turbocharger, reducing lag. Volvo rates the 3.0-liter engine at 281 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, and claims that it produces its maximum torque over a wide rev band, from 1,500 to 4,800 rpm. Reviewers say the turbocharged engine has almost no turbo lag, and it provides much stronger performance than its normally aspirated sibling. It is somewhat thirstier than the 3.2; EPA ratings are 16/21 city/highway, again on premium fuel.

Subaru Impreza WRX STI Engine History

The introduction of the Impreza line began with Subaru in 1993. Subaru’s main goals when producing this vehicle were to help fill a gap in the small car market initially; later in its life Subaru changed its goals to become dominant in rally race scenes. The power to weight ratio of the Impreza when a combination of the fairly small, light chassis and the boxer styled four cylinder Subaru engine made it instantly successful in the rally races. Each year brought new revisions to the Subaru engines, ramping up power while still keeping the lighter chassis making it a dominating force when on the track.

The first versions of the Impreza were offered in either front wheel drive or an all wheel drive configuration. It was available in either a four door sedan or a five door station wagon/estate. Initially the Subaru engine offered was a 1.8 flat 4 cylinder known as the EJ18. This was followed quickly with the addition of the 1.6 litter version. Subaru chose to stay with the same basic design of the engine known as the flat four cylinder (or boxer) engine as they believed that by keeping the engine on a low centre of gravity, in line with the transmission, minimised body roll as compared to vehicles with offset engines. Another bonus to this design is that it also eliminated the need for a weighted counter rotating crankshaft. Since each piston is counter weighted by the opposing piston directly opposite while the engine is running. The 1.6 and 1.8 engines were dropped from production in 1996 and replaced with the now common 2.0 litre.

Subaru then introduced the STI(Subaru Technica International) version of the Impreza into the Japanese Domestic Market or JDM as it is more commonly known, in 1994. The STI was an upgraded version of the Impreza WRX models currently available. The STI came equipped with performance tuned suspensions, engines and transmissions. The STI was immediately successful in rallies and was sought after by street racers. There was even an option to order special RA (Race Altered) versions direct from the manufacturer which were modified by being lighter in weight, having reduced sound proofing, manual window mechanisms, omitting the air conditioning and coming equipped with more robust engines, shorter gearing and driver controlled center differentials.

The Impreza model received an external facelift in 1997, this was followed by an internal redesign incorporating the more advanced dashboard from the Forester in 1998. Further upgrades were found on the European models in 1999-2000. These upgrades included making parts from the STI range standard, front brake callipers were now four pot with 294mm brake discs, wheels were upgraded from 15 inch to 16 inch, they added vented rear disc brakes, a firmer suspension and bucket seats.

The beginning of 2001 saw the introduction of the second generation of the Subaru Impreza. The body style was larger, safer, more refined, the suspension was stiffer and more responsive. Many Subaru owners use nicknames for their vehicles based on the headlights they came with. In 2002-2003 the headlights became known as “bug eyes”, these were followed in the 2004-2005 “crocodile eye” versions also known as “blob eyes” and then finally in 2006-2007 the headlight configuration was to be known as “hawk eyes”.
The engines and body styles available through the years are as follows:


Body Style Available:

door coupe
door sedan
door estate

Engines Available:

1.8 110hp
2.0 turbo 208-280hp
2.2 145hp
2.5 155hp


Body Style Available:

door sedan
door estate

Engines Available:

1.5 125hp
2.0 125hp
2.5 165hp
2.5 173hp
2.0 turbo 227hp
2.5 turbo 300hp


Body Style Available:

door sedan
door estate

Engines Available:

1.5 107hp
2.0 150hp
2.5 170hp
2.5 turbo 224hp
2.5 turbo 265hp
2.5 turbo 305hp
2.0 turbo diesel 148hp