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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 > N52 tune/chip ECU



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      12-24-2010, 10:44 PM   #1
dd330i
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N52 tune/chip ECU

With all the different ECU upgrades available, is there one that stands out above the competition in terms of HP gain for the N52? I didn't buy the 335i simply because of the HPFP problems and although I am enjoying my 330i tremendously, I can only imagine how much more pull the 335i has...not to mention the N54 tuning capabilities are far greater then the N52.

So as a first mod, i'm thinking of an ECU upgrade, cold air intake, and exhaust. I'm going to be speaking with the head/training bmw mechanic at a local dearlership to hear his thoughts but would like to get the forum members opinions too.

(I searched the topic but couldn't find exactly what I was looking for)
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      12-24-2010, 11:03 PM   #2
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http://burgertuning.com/BMS_Power_Box.html
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      12-24-2010, 11:19 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaybird124 View Post
Is 10HP the most I'm going to see on an ECU upgrade? I'm not sure if it's worth it
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      12-24-2010, 11:22 PM   #4
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Waste of money
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      12-24-2010, 11:22 PM   #5
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Everything depends on how much you want to spend. Realistically, intake, exhaust, and a chip should bring 20-25 hp. 280 hp isn't bad for such a lightweight and silky smooth power plant.
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      12-24-2010, 11:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaybird124 View Post
Everything depends on how much you want to spend. Realistically, intake, exhaust, and a chip should bring 20-25 hp. 280 hp isn't bad for such a lightweight and silky smooth power plant.
25 to the crank is optimistic, to say the least
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      12-24-2010, 11:28 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayKay335i View Post
25 to the crank is optimistic, to say the least
Probably right. I don't think it's a bad car out of the box.
330i is such a great daily driver. Should last for a long time. Handles better than a 335 but has more power than a 328.
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      12-24-2010, 11:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaybird124 View Post
Probably right. I don't think it's a bad car out of the box.
330i is such a great daily driver. Should last for a long time. Handles better than a 335 but has more power than a 328.
?

It has the same underpinnings. They handle the same. Its a great car out of the box. But you purchase it because you like what it is out of the box in terms of power.
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      12-24-2010, 11:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayKay335i View Post
?

It has the same underpinnings. They handle the same. Its a great car out of the box. But you purchase it because you like what it is out of the box in terms of power.
I've had both of them. When you push them hard you can feel the weight in the nose of the 335. It pushes out of the corner more. Not by a large amount, but if you drive them side by side you'll notice.
Not a big deal, just trying to highlight the pluses of the 330
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      12-24-2010, 11:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaybird124 View Post
I've had both of them. When you push them hard you can feel the weight in the nose of the 335. It pushes out of the corner more. Not by a large amount, but if you drive them side by side you'll notice.
Not a big deal, just trying to highlight the pluses of the 330
Gotcha.

OP, you should probably just leave it as it is in terms of power. Go for suspension mods.
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      12-24-2010, 11:50 PM   #11
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we n52-ers should probably realize that we can't expect serious gains from performance modifications. Instead, I like to focus on the fun to drive factor of all bmws with light mods that can make the car a bit more peppy and responsive to just add to the fun
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      12-24-2010, 11:59 PM   #12
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I would go ahead and pick up a power box. Although it does only add about 10 hp, the big thing is the throttle response. It'll quicken it up and make it seem faster.
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      12-25-2010, 12:45 AM   #13
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Also doesn't hurt to try to reduce the weight as much as possible. 100 lbs can make a big difference, but even 30-50 lbs in the right places can become quite noticeable.

Sidebar: I wish I didn't have to tote all of this emissions crap around. Makes my car such a pig. (still love the diesel though)
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      12-25-2010, 01:22 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayKay335i View Post
Gotcha.

OP, you should probably just leave it as it is in terms of power. Go for suspension mods.
The 330i is definitely a fun car to drive as daily driver and the power is plenty enough to get me in trouble...sometimes I get carried away thinking how much faster it could be. I think I will do cold air intake, exhaust (mainly for the sound) and go for suspension mods. My friend has an e36 cab 323i although not his daily driver with full race suspension m3 bushings, 19's etc...the car has 175hp (or 185hp not quite sure) and he has an absolute blast driving it
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      12-25-2010, 01:44 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaybird124 View Post
Also doesn't hurt to try to reduce the weight as much as possible. 100 lbs can make a big difference, but even 30-50 lbs in the right places can become quite noticeable.
I think you're overthinking this.
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      12-25-2010, 07:19 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ninesixtwo View Post
I think you're overthinking this.
Meh, just looking for ways to help.

I just preferred mine stock.
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      12-26-2010, 04:01 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jr155 View Post
we n52-ers should probably realize that we can't expect serious gains from performance modifications. Instead, I like to focus on the fun to drive factor of all bmws with light mods that can make the car a bit more peppy and responsive to just add to the fun
+1
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      12-26-2010, 04:42 PM   #18
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I had read more than one person who had their 328i's gone from around 6.5 to below 6 after some mods and weight loss. They do work.

But one of the best things going for our BMW N52's is smooth rev all the way to redline. I had more than once competed with various other more muscle cars or at least cars with bigger power/weight stats on the books, a Mustang GT, Nissan Altima 3.5L SE, just to name a few. All powerful cars for their weight, but when the rev got high, they seemed to chicken out and I knew why.

It is not easy to build a car that can be as smooth at 6700 RPM as it is at 2500 RPM. The G37 was a good example when I test drove it, I had to really step on it to get to its claimed power range and by then it became so noisy and vibrated significantly most drivers would just scale back on the throttle, same with the Audi A4 I test drove.
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      12-26-2010, 08:03 PM   #19
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Active Autowerke tune hands down. It flashes the actual ECU and even takes into account any additional bolt on mods you may have (exhaust, intake). Best tune for the gains and price right now, before you get into headers and major digging in the car.
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      12-27-2010, 11:04 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
I had read more than one person who had their 328i's gone from around 6.5 to below 6 after some mods and weight loss. They do work.

But one of the best things going for our BMW N52's is smooth rev all the way to redline. I had more than once competed with various other more muscle cars or at least cars with bigger power/weight stats on the books, a Mustang GT, Nissan Altima 3.5L SE, just to name a few. All powerful cars for their weight, but when the rev got high, they seemed to chicken out and I knew why.

It is not easy to build a car that can be as smooth at 6700 RPM as it is at 2500 RPM. The G37 was a good example when I test drove it, I had to really step on it to get to its claimed power range and by then it became so noisy and vibrated significantly most drivers would just scale back on the throttle, same with the Audi A4 I test drove.
Good point, things like this are what make BMW's so special.
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      12-30-2010, 12:52 AM   #21
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2004 BMW 330i ZHP  [4.75]
2011 135i  [3.73]
2008 328xi  [4.38]
swap your front seats to recaros, ditch the back ones all together, get a CF hood and CF trunk- all to save about 125lbs

then do full exhaust, intake, tune (sorry guys but a PBX is still no match for a real legit ecu flash), and some lightweight 17" rims with good rubber on them (PS2's or something like that). You can get a 328i 6MT into stock 335i 0-60 range plus it'll probably out corner it by a hair also.

Of course you're looking at spending about $8-10k to do it but it'll be fun. I honestly miss my 328xi, it was heavily modded out and pretty quick. I love the turbo now but it's almost too easy, the N52 you had you push it hard which kinda made it fun.
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      12-30-2010, 01:43 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UdubBadger View Post
I love the turbo now but it's almost too easy, the N52 you had you push it hard which kinda made it fun.
Good point! I read a lot of 335i owners complaining about their 328i loaners being too slow, of course they are used to easy pedaling. A nicely modded 328i can be just as fast as a stock 335i during daily driving, looking from outside in a bystander probably cannot tell their speed apart, the difference lies in how hard the 328i driver would rev his engine and stay in low gears longer.
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