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      09-15-2012, 11:22 PM   #1
skinrock
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Drives: 2016 i8
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2016 BMW i8  [5.00]
Vishnu/FFTEC Flex-Fuel Kit Installation, Results & Driving Impressions

Preface
Well it's no secret that I have switched to Procede in preparation for a single turbo next month, and while I wait, I decided to get the Flex-Fuel kit to hold me over. While I am in a unique position to offer a much needed comparison between JB4/Cobb(+Protune)/Procede, it would not be fair to do so since I have only been running the Procede with E85. That being said, there are a few things I will touch on.

Installation
One of the biggest benefits of Vishnu and FFTEC working together on this is the actual sensor bracket itself. I just love things that mount in OEM spots as if they were meant to be there. The bracket mounts to an existing spot on the driver's side strut tower, and the sensor cable runs through the factory cable management shroud. Other than the color of the bracket (which I hope to get anodized black), it looks like a standard option if you didn't know better.

Results
As I mentioned in another thread, I do not have a 91 pump gas Procede baseline to compare to. I came to the shop with E85 in the tank because we were curious to do a run with the COBB E85 map before I removed it. The runs were done on FFTEC's Mustang, which Ferruccio just recorded a 260awhp baseline on his 335i xDrive. This is not meant to be an excuse, but until I empty out my tank and go back with 91 octane, it's all I have. On a 48% mix of E85+91, we hit 418rwhp/417rwtq.

Benefits
While some people may think it's silly to use a sensor to do "basic math", there are a couple unqiue benfits of running the Flex-Fuel kit. First off, E85 is not always a consistent percentage, it can vary from location to location and during seasonal changes. Secondly, the ability to run 100% and the results from it are amazing (or as Shiv calls it, the bee's knees). I have been driving the past few days starting with 68% and now pretty much 100% after filling up again with pure E85. And of course, if I find myself away from home and have to use 91, I don't have to worry about anything.

Impressions
First off, Shiv spoiled me a little by taking me for a ride while it was at 48%. If you've ever had the opportunity to ride with him, you'll know what I mean when I say "holy shit". My first thoughts were, I had no idea my car could do that. I have been stuck in the 350rwhp for a year and a half now, and when we first pulled out, I didn't think what I felt was possible without upgraded turbos. Now granted, being the passenger is always more exhilarating, so I was curious to see how big of a difference it was in the driver's seat.

It is an amazing feeling to get sucked into the seat and feel the rush of acceleration. The biggest improvement in my eyes is just how much it wants to go from a roll. When I'm around 3500-4000 and I feather the pedal a little, there is just this sensation that it's going to pull hard every time. And from high speed rolls (50-60mph) I still can't get over the immediate response. Twice now I broke traction at that speed, but when it hooks, it pushes me back - one of the best feelings I've had in my car. Needless to say, there is no hype here, it feels f*cking awesome. The stock turbos will still start to drop at about 6400, but I've never felt it run this strong in the upper RPM range.

Procede
As I already stated, this is not going to be my full comparative review. However, there are a couple things I've noticed since switching that I find to be obvious improvements. First off is the throttle feel. I was debating talking about this, since part of this comes down to personal preference, but I'd still like to share my thoughts. I was running the stock throttle maps from COBB, but the Procede, in a sense, feels more predictable. Not really the way the COBB linear maps felt, it just feels better under my foot. The other difference I've noticed is shifting. One thing that always seemed to plague me was hard shifting, especially if I was slowing down to a stop, but then having the light turn green and getting back on it. A lot of times it would shift very hard and lurch forward. So far, it has been shifting much smoother and more predictable under DS mode. There may be a little less torque till 3000, but it is much more daily drivable in my opinion.

Summary
No matter what tune you have, E85 is absolutely worth trying out. If you have a pump near you, I highly recommend it. If you have a Procede, the Flex-Fuel kit is an amazing addition to get the most out of it.
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