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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > BMW E90/E92/E93 3-series General Forums > Regional Forums > Australia > Piggy back or Flash in Australia/Victoria?



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      08-13-2014, 08:04 AM   #1
Scotty89
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Piggy back or Flash in Australia/Victoria?

So the 335 is my first turbo car, and the first car I've ever considered power modifications.

My prime concern is keeping the car in top shape and not doing anything to jeopardise the safety of the engine... however I've been digging around a lot and it seems like there's another 60-80 hp ready to be unlocked by simply getting a better tune (on an otherwise standard car!), and a hoard of people who report no malfunctions or safety issues in doing so.

I am however still a little unclear on the laws in Victoria here.

From what I can tell and what I have read myself, the Australian Design Regulations forbid most exhaust and engine modifications - including ECU modifications UNLESS it is a reflash or replacement computer that is a sealed unit, such that after replacement the unit cannot be opened and/or the software cannot be modified by the user. Of course, the car still needs to meet the required emissions testing as well.

From this I gather that piggy-back units like the JB4 or Procede are not genuinely legal to run, but a complete flash by an engine tuner would be? Is this correct?

I know there is an argument that no one would ever know you're running a JB4 without dismantling your car, but I am worried that if something happened insurance wise, and they had to tow the car such that I couldn't remove the JB4 before inspectors got to it... then I'd be shit out of luck.

Does anyone know where I should be looking exactly for the actual laws?

I'm still kind of leaning towards a JB4 as the code reading, data logging and self-diagnostics seem to be worth the value in itself.

I read that some tunes are designed for the North American spec... is there any issue with purchasing JB4 from USA to install in euro (Aus) spec N54's?
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      08-13-2014, 09:07 AM   #2
ady9
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If your worried about that, I think you bought the wrong car to look at modding buddy.

Just get the jb4 it's proven and it's great.
You won't ragrets.


Last edited by ady9; 08-14-2014 at 09:55 PM.
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      08-13-2014, 09:49 AM   #3
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What the guy above said, I dont have a 335 but read a lot about it, if you are concerned then I think I heard of one that connects to the obd port, proceed? I'm assuming you can just pull it of in an emergency and no one will know it was there, have a look around and hopefully you find something....or if you want to do mods like bolt ons etc then get an engineering certificate
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      08-13-2014, 11:49 AM   #4
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If you are worried, get a Cobb as there's no physical installation since it's just a software flash.

However even a ECU flash like Cobb is technically illegal unless you get a mod certificate for it, as it still affects the emissions from OEM.

But whether anyone would find out is another issue all together.

I doubt police doing vehicle checks on their blizes during a saturday night is going to have a BMW obd reader device to check for codes.

Plus I have driven both my old Jap import vs my current 335i to discovery that police generally gives you zero attention for my BMW (even if I was speeding a bit), drive a modified import & you will be looking at a defect notice every week you drive out...
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      08-13-2014, 07:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mayuri Krab View Post
drive a modified import & you will be looking at a defect notice every week you drive out...
This... coming from a heavily modified s15 I have absolutely no fear with the BMW even with the obvious carbon bits everywhere and exhaust

Matter of fact, I find the popo admiring my car moreso than looking out to defect it
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      08-13-2014, 08:03 PM   #6
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if you're worried about legality then get the JB4. its controlled with the buttons on your steering wheel and u have the option to turn the whole thing off on the fly, so if you happen to be summoned for an emission test you can just turn the whole thing off and no one will notice anything. But just a word of warning. this forum is infected with a plague called the mod bug. as soon as you start modding, it will slowly eat away at your wallet and the confidence to drive around without being pulled over.

enjoy
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      08-13-2014, 08:32 PM   #7
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JB4
do it, u wont regret it
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      08-15-2014, 07:18 AM   #8
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I perused about the dyno charts thread and I think I'm sold.

From what I read, the n54 dyno's about 200rwkw standard, and the JB4 can add another 50-60kw to that, which from my calcs would put it in the same power/weight ratio as a HSV GTS R8 and FPV F6.

Edit: ahh fk it, YOLO right? I just ordered one. No ragrets Ady!!
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      08-15-2014, 08:13 AM   #9
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Be prepared to buy 6 x new coils and spark plugs!

The tune basically adds more boost and advance ignition timing and thus puts an extra load on ignition components. 99% of us have had a limp mode (I shat myself the 1st time it happened) and it's wise advice to change these items when you add a tune.

It's an easy DIY job which takes 30 mins and costs around $3-400 or so...
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      08-15-2014, 08:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DR-JEKL
Be prepared to buy 6 x new coils and spark plugs!

The tune basically adds more boost and advance ignition timing and thus puts an extra load on ignition components. 99% of us have had a limp mode (I shat myself the 1st time it happened) and it's wise advice to change these items when you add a tune.

It's an easy DIY job which takes 30 mins and costs around $3-400 or so...
This. Better preventative than reactive.

These 2 components are a bear minimum replacement.
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      08-15-2014, 04:53 PM   #11
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Thanks I'll order them so they arrive on time with the unit.

Did you guys switch to the one-step colder NGK mappable plugs? From what I read the plugs should be 1 step colder for every 100hp over standard... so map 1 will almost be there right (80-100hp gain at flywheel?).

Edit: Do I really need all 6 new coils? The total price of plugs + coils + spark plug socket tool is like $450 from ECS. Surely not all of the coils will be bad? I've only got 90,000km on the odometer.

Last edited by Scotty89; 08-15-2014 at 07:23 PM.
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      08-15-2014, 08:11 PM   #12
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You don't need all 6 coils, but once 1 begins to fail most of the others are not too far behind. In the long run it's better to get all 6 at once.

I'm at 56,000 and have had to replace 2 coils so far but would rather all 6 to be replaced for peace of mind.
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      08-18-2014, 02:16 AM   #13
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cops be mirin'
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      08-18-2014, 03:17 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scotty89 View Post
Thanks I'll order them so they arrive on time with the unit.

Did you guys switch to the one-step colder NGK mappable plugs? From what I read the plugs should be 1 step colder for every 100hp over standard... so map 1 will almost be there right (80-100hp gain at flywheel?).

Edit: Do I really need all 6 new coils? The total price of plugs + coils + spark plug socket tool is like $450 from ECS. Surely not all of the coils will be bad? I've only got 90,000km on the odometer.
I'm running oem bmw branded plugs (there are all sorts of hooplah that the bmw plugs made by bosch are a different plug compared to the bosch plug - even though they have the same part #!) This is what the majority of guys are using, but there are plenty of guys running the ngk's...

Mate with 90k kays it's more then likely you will definately need new coils! Some guys when they have added a tune on a car with 40k kays and the car being 4 years old had to replace the coils!

I'm guessing this is your 1st turbo car, and like a lot of other turbo cars (the RB26's come to mind) with a tune these things really require the ignition system to be in optimal shape otherwise the DME cuts the power and chucks a limp mode. When you get a limp mode its a pain in the arse as you have to pull over on the side of the road, reset and drive off...

If you can't afford $450 to spend on coils and plugs, no offence but you have bought the wrong car!
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      08-19-2014, 04:06 AM   #15
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It's all good, new spark plugs (NGK 5992) and coils are already on their way!!

It is my first turbo, so thanks for the advice!
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      08-19-2014, 07:04 AM   #16
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You won't ragrets.

y'all know what I'm saying...
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      08-19-2014, 07:27 AM   #17
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My weekend car is the Evo and I would NEVER run a piggy back for it. I've heard of piggy back system for N/A Cars like my daily Honda but would never risk it on a turbo car as I believe it isn't as "refined" as each car is different.

Flash tunes is what I have always used on the Evo and it was the best!

That said for the 335i I was really hesitant on the JB4. When my mate first got it I was like er. ahh umm are you sure this is safe for the car? Then when I got my 335i and I did my research I couldn't be happier with the JB4. That said if you did an overlap (run flashtune side by side with the JB4) or purely run a flash tune that would probably be the best route power wise as it is optimized for your car. I would only recommend that once your car is highly modified (e85, meth, intercooler, dp, exhaust .etc)

My car only has an exhaust and JB4 atm so I don't see the need for a flash tune as it is fairly stock.
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      08-19-2014, 05:58 PM   #18
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with that said... meth is a clear burning liquid so if someone crashes in to you from the rear, you won't know your car is on fiahhh!!
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      08-19-2014, 06:44 PM   #19
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Meth. Not even once
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