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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > NA Engine (non-turbo) / Drivetrain / Exhaust Modifications > Tuners and Chips?



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      07-25-2005, 02:15 AM   #1
BellasBmw
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Tuners and Chips?

I have a question for you all.. Ive been reading some of the threads here and there, and i really have no idea what you guys mean by chips and tuners..etc? I know that chips have to do with the software, so does the dealer or a performance shop install this chip into the car , and bam, we have more power? Can someone give me some info on the chips, tuners...whatever else i should know so i wont be left in the dark
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      07-25-2005, 02:41 AM   #2
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what???.... that shit soundded confusing..
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      07-25-2005, 03:21 AM   #3
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Before OBD II came out (OBD I), you were able to change the old Engine Control Unit (ECU) software by changing the chip. Similar to how you would upgrade the processor in your PC.

Now with OBD II, most of the engine programming is done via the OBD port near the left footrest on the driver's side. Some ask, how can these tuners extract power, and why didn't BMW do that from the factory? First off, BMW sets the cars more conservatively because of issues such as warranty, lower octane gas in certain parts of the world, high operating temps, etc. The way they do this is by advancing or retarding the ignition timing and timing on the camshafts. Some also raise the rev. limiter to extract more top end power letting you change gears a few hundred RPM later.

I've seen some programs out for the E90, but I don't think there is any programming available for the US E90 325i yet. The chips from Europe for the E90 is for the 2.5L engine.

Last edited by onesixeight; 07-25-2005 at 08:34 PM.
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      07-25-2005, 04:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onesixeight
Before OBD II came out (OBD I), you were able to change the old Engine Control Unit (ECU) software by changing the chip. Similar to how you would upgrade the processor in your PC.

Now with OBD II, most of the engine programming is done via the OBD port near the left footrest on the driver's side. Some ask, how can these tuners extract power, and why didn't BMW do that from the factory? First off, BMW sets the cars more conservatively because of issues such as warranty, lower octane gas in certain parts of the world, high operating temps, etc. The way they do this is my advancing or retarding the ignition timing and timing on the camshafts. Some also raise the rev. limiter to extract more top end power letting you change gears a few hundred RPM later.

I've seen some programs out for the E90, but I don't think there is any programming available for the US E90 325i yet. The chips from Europe for the E90 is for the 2.5L engine.
So how will i know if there's been an upgrade or something new that i can install on my car?
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      07-25-2005, 04:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BellasBmw
So how will i know if there's been an upgrade or something new that i can install on my car?
Just keep checking the forum and I'm sure people will post about new upgrades (chips and other modifications like exhausts, etc...) for the e90 as they come out. This forum is as close to a cohesive central source for the E90 as you're gonna find.
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      07-25-2005, 09:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BellasBmw
So how will i know if there's been an upgrade or something new that i can install on my car?
Dinan is a tuner up in Morgan Hill (near San Jose) that puts out some really nice stuff, and they also have the advantage of being covered fully under BMW Warranty. I have heard it will be a year or so before they come out with anything for the E90 (and this is good because it means they are spending some time developing things rather than just throwing crap out on the market). http://www.dinanbmw.com/

With the E46, they were not able to squeeze much more power out of the car, but who knows with the 325i E90? There could be some room for improvement with the 325i. Since you have an automatic, maybe they have an ECU program that will quicken the shifting (making it quicker but perhaps less smooth) and maybe allowing the car to rev slightly higher before shifting, which will help acceleration. With the E46, their ECU program was only able to raise the rev limited a few hundred RPM, which allowed slightly better acceleration.

There are other tuners out there, of course, but Dinan is my favorite.
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      07-25-2005, 09:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CC 330i
Dinan is a tuner up in Morgan Hill (near San Jose) that puts out some really nice stuff, and they also have the advantage of being covered fully under BMW Warranty. I have heard it will be a year or so before they come out with anything for the E90 (and this is good because it means they are spending some time developing things rather than just throwing crap out on the market).
There are other tuners out there, of course, but Dinan is my favorite.
And the most expensive...but the warranty is cool.
These guys are also claiming that they can find more power, at least in the 330....
http://www.bimmerworld.com/Projects/...ject_intro.htm
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      07-25-2005, 09:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichReg
And the most expensive...but the warranty is cool.
These guys are also claiming that they can find more power, at least in the 330....
http://www.bimmerworld.com/Projects/...ject_intro.htm
BimmerWorld does a lot of racing, and they are very competitive in Sports Car racing. I would not hesitate to buy from them. However, I might wait until the warranty expires on my car before doing any engine mods from them, since then it won't matter if something breaks!
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      07-25-2005, 11:24 PM   #9
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I spoke with one of the techs at my dealer who has gone to E90 school. He said no more replaceable chips, but reprogramming is possible, commenting that someone ineveitably will figure out how to reprogram a 325 into a 330. (His bet was Dinan.) Suggested that if you want more power the place to start is with the exhaust+muffler system, then the intake manifold.
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