Your car lacks performance but the conversion parts are too expensive for you? No problem, because your car already has power reserves that you just haven’t exhausted yet. How does that work? Chiptuning is the answer, no matter if VW Passat, VW Tiguan, VW Polo, VW Scirocco or VW Touran.
But there are also some risks and costs behind the promising performance tuning, which you should absolutely know beforehand. Therefore you will find here everything about the advantages and disadvantages and what experiences there are so far.
The disadvantages of VW chip tuning
While traditional tuning is about optics, individuality or simply attracting attention, chip tuning is supposed to increase performance or efficiency. However, this is only possible with modern engines such as the TDI engine. However, the principle is usually the same. The injection quantity is increased by a modified software. This increases the load on the material, for example due to higher temperatures in the combustion chamber. This has a negative effect on the longevity of your car.
Incorrect programming can even lead to a total loss.
Therefore we advise against dubious offers and let the chip tuning be carried out by professionals.
Use the advantages of chip tuning
If you get advice from an expert and the tuning is carried out by a professional workshop, the risks are limited. Experience instead unexpected power, which was awakened by the chiptuning. You will gain more power and higher top speeds are possible.
This makes your car more flexible in dense city traffic. Fast lane changes allow you to make fast progress and by a short step on the accelerator pedal you reach the traffic light still with green. The left lane on the motorway belongs to you from now on.
What costs can you expect?
Of course this fun is not completely free either. There are various adapter plug solutions on the Internet that can fool your engine control unit into believing wrong values, so that more fuel is injected into the combustion chambers. However, this type of chip tuning is often flawed and risky. As tempting as the low prices of these adapter plugs from 15EUR to make yourself may be, the investment in a professional chip tuning is worth every cent at the end. The manufacturer or the retooling company gives you a guarantee with which you can feel safe.
Note, however, that this conversion will entail additional costs. Some vehicle manufacturers are sceptical about chip tuning. Here the manufacturer warranty of your car could completely expire. The costs in a warranty case are then borne by you. In addition, your insurance can obtain a higher premium and the vehicle tax could rise due to higher CO2 emissions.
Which performance increases are possible?
The manufacturers of chip tuning packages usually advertise with +30% more power and even want to save fuel. For some 100EUR you can achieve a power plus of additional 50 HP. This depends of course always strongly on your engine. Moreover, it is not advisable to scratch the upper limit of what is technically possible. The more power you put on your car, the greater the load. More power and more torque means more power transmission on gears, shafts and clutches.
Which products are available? Previous experience with chip tuning VW
RaceChip is a provider of a chip tuning package and advertises, like most of its competitors, with up to +30% performance increase. It also offers its customers a comprehensive engine warranty and promises to save as much as 15% fuel.
The principle is simple to apply. RaceChip supplies a small box which is connected to the engine control unit via an OBD interface. Plug it in and get started – do chip tuning yourself.
A test by evocars-magazine showed a considerable increase in performance. A VW Golf GTI with measured 257 HP power and 366 Nm torque has after the conversion a remarkable torque of 409 Nm and scarcely 300 HP power. This means a power increase of 43 hp, i.e. about 17%.
Possibilities of chip tuning with different models
There are other manufacturers of these tuning boxes whose offers are similar, such as the “Power Control X” from DTE Systems or the “Kickdown-Unit” from KW-Systems. A TÜV parts certificate is not mandatory. In the following you can look up the possibilities for some common motorizations and models. These range from EUR 449 for the Polo to EUR 549 for the VW Touran.
- VW Passat (as of 2014): The 1.4-litre TSI engine of the Passat can be improved by 24 hp and 60 Nm torque, while the 2-litre TDI already has 27 hp but only 45 Nm more. For the VW Passat 2-litre TSI with 280 hp, even an increase in power of 54 hp and 101 Nm is possible.
- VW Tiguan (from 2016): The 1.4-litre TSI can be improved by 24 hp and 60 Nm, the 27 hp and 45 Nm and the 2-litre TSI by up to 44 hp and 85 Nm.
- VW Polo (from 2017): The 1-litre TSI can be increased by 19 hp and 60 Nm. For the 1.8-litre TDI there are only 18 hp, but 75 Nm more in it and the 2-litre GTI can be improved by 25 hp and 40 Nm.
- VW Scirocco (from 2008): According to RaceChip, the 1.4-litre TSI engine with 122 hp has an output increase of 37 hp and 60 Nm more in it. The 2-litre TDI engine can deliver up to 33 hp and 80 Nm more. For the Scirocco R with the TSIR engine a power increase of 45 hp and 95 Nm is possible.
- VW Touran (from 2015): The 1.2-litre TSI can be increased by 20 hp and 53 Nm, and the 2-litre TDI by 35 hp and 105 Nm.
Conclusion – What lessons are there to learn?
Chiptuning should be done in professional workshops. Do not take the risk of damage by dubious and improper tuning. If you want to do the tuning yourself, there is a wide range of products – so-called tuning boxes – with which you can achieve performance increases of up to 30% via OBD interface.
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