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Epic DTUK Tuning Box!!!!

Discussion in 'New A3/S3 (8V Chassis)' started by squiretolley, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    I wanted to share my experience of the CRD-T tuning box from DTUK for my 150ps TDI Sportback. When I ordered my car I really wanted to hold out for the 184ps, but impatience got the better of me and I ordered the 150ps. I really wanted the extra power and on paper the tuning box seemed the best way to go considering the issues with the latest ECU's. I bought the unit second hand on this forum and had been deliberating about buying one for the best part of a year. I had my reservations but I'm happy to report that so far the results are phenomenal!

    Andrew (ABYSS) was fantastic from the outset answering any questions I had day or night! He kindly agreed to update the software as the unit was bought in August and there had been a recent update, which enabled up to 200ps.

    The box has totally transformed an already excellent car to a rocketship! The problem I have now is actually getting the power down, retaining my licence and trying not to grin like a Cheshire cat everytime I accelerate. Third gear is unbelievable and will make overtaking on country roads a doddle.

    Done about 50 miles in it this evening and it pulls extremely well in all gears. Can't comment yet on fuel economy, but will report back in a few weeks time.

    Simply cannot fault the product and the service from DTUK. If you've been thinking about it, don't hesitate it'll be the best £300-400 you'll every spend (Amsterdam aside!!)
    #1
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  2. Schizophonic
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    Schizophonic Active Member

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    Interesting to hear initial thoughts. For those who are a bit like me, skeptical about leaving a trace on the ECU (TD1 fault code) I want to know if the other parts of your gibbons like your clutch, transmission, and etc has any knock on effect since you gain an extra 50bhp!

    Update up on a week by week or fortnightly impression, how does mpg effect? what does it do on fuel? Has your car thrown any fault codes, anything that we might be interested to know.
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  3. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    Insurance is a blocker for me, did an online quote and declared a box, doubled my premium pretty much. Not worth it for that! Might be different if I actually phone them up and ask, but some friends got stung at renewal time with remaps even though their insurance companies said at the time it was fine.
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  4. Tuddie
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    Tuddie Member

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    Totally agree, i had one on my 2.0 CR Tdi A6 and it made a huge difference, pity i sold the car a few weeks later, ha that reminds me i still have the box if anyones interested lol sorry to hijack your thread :)
    #4
  5. Shermo
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    Shermo Member

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    I'd be interested in knowing what affect is has on your MPG, assuming your driving style doesn't change too much with the extra power.

    I'd be tempted with one in the future if it really can add 10 - 20% to MPG, that would be great for the 184ps quattro as it would hopefully offset the loss due to the extra weight and s-tronic :) Would hopefully mean you could get a nice 60+mpg easy on a motorway run.
    #5
  6. cuke2u
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    cuke2u Active Member

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    From my experience the mpg improved with the remaps I've ever had...
    #6
  7. ABYSS
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    ABYSS Andrew - Diesel Tuning UK Site Sponsor

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    before speaking to your insurance company give us a call as we can explain how to bestir describe the kits to your insurance company,
    #7
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  8. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    I'm still worried about renewal time, even if I manage to convince them at the time. Also worried about longevity of parts in the car since I intend to keep the car for quite a while
    #8
  9. DAN@ADRIAN FLUX
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    DAN@ADRIAN FLUX Member Site Sponsor

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    Feel free to send me a PM if you did want a quote.

    Adrian Flux are specialist for modified cars so we would have no problem with insuring a vehicle with that type of modification - even at renewal.

    Thanks
    #9
  10. sidibear
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    sidibear Looking for Zombies !! Staff Member Moderator

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    @ Dan. Question, just for info, we won't hold you to it.

    On average, what kind of % loading is added for installing a tuning box ?
    #10
  11. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    I can highly recommend Esure. I've been with them for a couple of years and there was a 25% increase in my premium for the tuning box. I have stated 20-30% power gain, I'm sure I could have set it lower but wanted to do everything 'by the book'.

    BTW I'm 32, married with one child, 5yrs NCD, 10-15k miles pa and my premium with the tuning box is £240 which I think is bloody good. Strangely my premium plummeted when we had my son, I suppose the idea of driving with a child in the car makes you a safer driver??
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  12. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    I think I got a quote from Adrian Flux before but it wasn't the cheapest so I went with someone else. I'm coming up for renewal again quite soon though so maybe I will try it again.
    #12
  13. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    I'll update this thread regularly and report back on performance, fuel economy etc.
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  14. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    I only have 4 years NCD though - I previously had a company car and couldn't transfer the NCD across, but have had no claims against me, maybe that's what's causing the higher price.
    #14
  15. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    I don't imagine there would be that big a difference between 4 and 5yrs NCD. I know the % discount usually max out at 5yrs, but expect 4yr to be pretty close. Convictions may make a difference though! Fortunately I have a clean licence, but possibly not for much longer with the extra power!!!!
    #15
  16. h5djr
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    h5djr Active Member

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    Give LV a try. I found their quote much better than my previous insurance for the same cover and excess.
    #16
  17. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    Yeh, although I have a friend with LV who is mid way through a claim with them at the moment and is extremely unsatisfied with them. They tried to push a 50/50 split to him when it was clearly the other guys fault, turned out they hadn't even bothered to find out the story from the other side or fight his case for him at all (which is after all what you are paying insurance companies to do for you!). I'm wary of LV now as a result, don't think I want a company that isn't going to fight my corner if there is a dispute.
    #17
  18. Shermo
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    Shermo Member

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    I'm sure insurance is mostly random as some of the things make absolutely no sense.

    For instance I've been trying to work out the overall cost of getting a new car, my current car is worth sod all, 9 year old Peugeot 107, worth about £2k. Priced up insurance speculatively for a brand new A3 and it was cheaper than insuring my 2k Peugeot... how does that make sense given my Pug is worth nothing? It does 0-60 in about a 14s... compared with the A3 being about 30k, doing 0-60 in about 8s for the 2l diesel... nuts
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  19. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    Yeh, I found the same with my old car vs new one! A3 drivers must be seen as more sensible or something :p
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  20. RossR
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    RossR Member

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    The value of your car doesn't make much difference. You can still cause just as much damage to a third party. For insurance, performance seems to be the most important aspect of what you drive.
    #20
  21. Shermo
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    Shermo Member

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    Pretty sure a 180bhp, 1500kg car has better performance than a 68bhp 900kg car :)

    Anyway, I know that its all based on statistics and stuff, like younger drivers are technically more likely to crash and so are men as opposed to women although thats no longer allowed to be taken into account due to gender equality laws and what not.

    But for example really old people have dirt cheap insurance which makes no sense, my grandma is nearly 70 and her insurance is insanely cheap, yet she is way more dangerous than any young 20 year old as she is half blind and has the reflexes of a turtle!
    #21
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  22. Springer*
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    Springer* Member

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    Not entirely true, though it is to a certain degree.

    It is one of many factors that are taken into account when preparing a motor quote. It forms part of the vehicle insurance grouping, along with stuff like the likelihood of the car being stolen, cost of repairs etc. Also, other factors like overnight parking, postal code, age of driver, annual mileage, claims experience etc.

    Most insurers don't apply any sort of premium loading for vehicles up to maybe £20,000 (though some do) - but for cars worth more than that there is a premium loading applied based on value. Expensive cars such as Ferraris and Lambos etc that are worth £100k+ can have as much as 50% added to the base premium purely because of their value.

    This is also a factor in the cost of repairs which is usually taken into account when the vehicle is grouped by the ABI at launch.

    When it comes to modifying cars though most insurers tend not to like it because there is no industry standard to modifications where insurers can benchmark one mod against another. Its all discretionary as far as the underwriters are concerned and most would rather shy away from them altogether in order to keep things simple.

    Other insurers see it as a bit of a licence to print money though and will charge astronomic additional premiums for simple mods and if you then check the small print, in most cases the actual mods themselves aren't covered at all, and you are merely paying a huge additional premium for the supposed increased liability you pose to the insurers.

    In most cases its money for jam for them so it helps to shop around and try and find brokers/insurers who know what they are talking about.

    I'd like to think that a tuning box shouldn't attract a huge loading such as 25%+ because after all a lot of the performance hike is a bit of a placebo thing and the improved MPG thing deffo is.

    The theory is that due to the increased torque you don't need to rev the engine as high to get the performance so you will use less fuel. The thing is that you need to offset the fact that the increased performance is caused by more fuel being forced through the engine, which has to force the MPG down.

    I also find that most tuning boxes tend to confuse the internal computer into thinking your fuel consumption is better than it is. I have to say that overall in 2 years of driving with tuning boxes fitted to an Astra 1.9CDTi 150 and a Signum 1.9CDTi 120 the fuel economy was pretty much the same as standard, even though the computer tried to tell me that I was getting 5mpg more lol.

    With all this said though, I think the DTUK tuning boxes are superb. The service from the DTUK guys was brilliant and the quality of the kit was very good indeed.

    It pays to fiddle around with yours to find the optimum setting that works best with your car as turning them up too high in search of a few more bhp/torques tends to just result in over-fuelling and lots of smoke.

    They can be very harsh on clutches/drivetrain so its worth being careful. This is where a bespoke remap could be tailored to go a little easy on the torque delivery to save your clutch. The tuning box set up tends to dump a lot of the power in low down which can cause wear if you're not careful.

    Finally, my understanding is that the DTUK kits are designed in such a way that they enter the fuel line after any ECU sensors and therefore cannot be detected by the internal computers. Maybe cars are more clever nowadays but not long ago people could fit tuning boxes to brand new cars and then remove them at service time and they left no trace and thus didn't invalidate the warranty of the car. This made them more attractive to a lot of people than a remap.

    I liked the fact that I bought mine, ran them for 2 years and then was able to sell them on when I sold the cars and get some money back. Made the whole thing very good value.

    J:)
    #22
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  23. ABYSS
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    ABYSS Andrew - Diesel Tuning UK Site Sponsor

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    Some feedback from a Mk7 Golf GTD owner


    OK, here it is, done about 40 miles in it since fitment, this is the dual channel CRDT-2 box (rated 235PS)

    Firstly, my car has been running a bit sh!tty in the 50 miles pre-box. Smack in the middle of a spell of DPF regenning, last night I had to give my cousin a jump-start when he flattened his battery in Newcastle City Centre last night and called me up, in prime pub-kicking out time. Spent 20 mins crawling around the 1/2 mile of road surrounding the Central train station, which made things worse and then 10 mins of 2000 rpm idling while he tried to get his sh!tty Citroen people carrier to splutter into life.

    After a short spell at the Metrocentre this morning, I headed out to DTUK when Andrew confirmed he could meet me (and save me waiting for the postie on Tuesday). After getting there, Andrew fitted the box off his Skoda onto mine to see how it runs (set at 4+1, Andrews recommended top setting). The industrial estate consists of a 3/4 mile long road, and it was empty, so I did a quick spurt to 80mph and back down to sensible levels. Huge difference. Did same on the way back. Andrew then put the software onto the new box and fitted it to my car. Repeated the blast along the industrial estate, my box seemed a tiny bit better, or maybe I was just more confident in it's use. Came back, then had a chat with Andrew about TDIs we've had in the past etc (for about an hour!!!)

    Firstly, I would say that I prefer this box to the TDI-tuning box I trialled - they are 2 very different animals.

    The TDI-tuning box is raw and savage, some people might prefer that, but for me a sudden surge of power that causes wheelspin at 60mph in 3rd when you put your foot down is a bit of a widow-maker. At times with that box on setting 7, I felt I could quite easily James Dean the car.

    The CRDT-2 has a much smoother and linear development of power - as smooth as the GTD's stock power range, but just more of it. Unlike my experiences with the TDI-tuning box, the idling was as smooth as stock - I experienced lumpy idling with the TDI-tuning box, but Buddy hadn't noticed on his. When we took my dad's TDI-tuning box off his MK5 GT 170 to trade in for his DSG GTD, his idling became smoother.

    The car ran at the hot end of the spectrum for the 40 miles (24 miles home and 16 miles going to pick the missus up from work) I drove around on after fitting the box (minimum 95C, but staying at 102C for a good 10 mins, and then being happy to be sat around 97-98C for most of the time). I wasn't sure whether the running hot was down to me booting it a bit, or whether it was a continuation of the DPF regen that had been going on. I do think my stock GTD was running on the cold side, as if this was the main cause of my slightly poor mpg and frequent DPF regen.

    A few days will tell if the boxed GTD has a preference for running at 95-97C, as my Scirocco did, if so, I might see my mpg and regen interval improve on that score alone.

    The car feels complete now, like it was meant to be. At stock i'm feeling it is no faster than my Scirocco 170TDI.

    Got onto the A19 at Killingworth, up a long and steep sliproad from the road below. Me and a Civic Type R got on the 2 lane sliproad at the same time and I annihilated the R. It was trying very hard, but not even close. Those things have no torque so maybe a standard GTD would outdo them up a hill (just).

    Got home and 90 mins later I went to pick up the missus from work (overtime). On my rolling start run onto the coast road, for which I have measured previous cars performance against by the speed at which I pass a sign, I managed 88mph (it was quiet and I took it straight back down to 75 ), compared to 81mph average on my GTD and 83mph average on my Scirocco.

    The other thing that seems to have improved my drive is pull away from a standstill. The worst thing about the auto handbrake is that I always pull away ultra cautiously until after the autohold has fully let go - it feels like if you give it some for a quick getaway then you'll stall (it probably won't but it feels that way). My car doesn't feel like that any more, the car feels like it'll easily overcome the bite of the autohold for a better getaway. You've got to have a bit of restraint in 2nd - seems the easiest point of an acceleration move to wheelspin if you're not careful.

    Over the moon with the box, and on the assumption that I won't get any more regens than I get already (time will tell), i'll have no regrets at all.

    I reset my MFD "since start" mpg reading when I left DTUK. It had been an abysmal 41mpg due to all the regenning which followed the previous night's events. By the time I got home (24 miles later), it was up to 55mpg. I suspect that like the TDI-tuning.co.uk box, the indicated mpg will be somewhere in the region of 15% optimistic at the higher settings, making an actual 47mpg far more likely (about what I would have expected from stock with as much hooning around as I did from a hot start).

    I will keep you updated with actual mpg/regen info. In fact I might top the car back up tomorrow just so we can see a "whole tank" mpg that isn't biased by the sh!tty run I had between filling up and fitting the box.
    #23
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  24. RobH_S3
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    RobH_S3 Member

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    Abyss can we have some vbox times please for the S3? 0-60 0-100 etc

    Stage 1 and 2. I guess when geefunk gets his car back from miltek you'll be doing a stage 2 map. Perfect time for some vbox figures if he's up for it.
    #24
  25. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    Small update on fuel economy....

    My work commute is 28 miles and I normally avg 46-48mpg, but today with the tuning box on I achieved 60.7mpg!! Absolutely gobsmacked, and it wasn't hanging around either! Will reset my long term trip tomorrow and see what it does over longer distances.
    #25
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  26. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    Wow, if that continues long term it may make the decision for me! :p

    Although I'd be interested to see you do proper brim-to-brim tests with the fuel tank as the boxes can trick the computer and skew the readings.
    #26
  27. veeeight
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    veeeight Well-Known Member

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    ^ Yes
    With tuning boxes, very often the ECU is no longer in complete control of the injector (and other parameters), so the metering and reporting back to the DIS trip computer will be incorrect.

    It is best to do brim to brim and mileage calculations to determine mpg, and not use the trip computer.
    #27
  28. Veneeringman
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    Veneeringman Bazinga

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    Just to add to this thread,

    I purchased a CRDT-2 box from Andrew for my Renault Master sport 125 DCi Van, very easy to fit (although the hardest part was waiting for 1000 miles to be done on the new van) It really has transformed the van as it is so much better to drive now and even better when fully loaded.

    It is miles better then the TUNIT box we used on the old Vivaro we traded in, that didn't seem to give much noticeable difference.


    So i can highly recommend Diesel Tuning UK.
    #28
  29. Schizophonic
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    Schizophonic Active Member

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    Makes sense but now this disappoints me if I can't get live correct readings. I don't fill my petrol brim as it's additional weight I'm carrying.
    #29
  30. Shermo
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    Shermo Member

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    A full 50 litre tank is about 40kg, that's around half a person... it's not exactly going to affect things that much!
    #30
  31. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    Hardly much.

    Anyway, once you figure out the true mpg, VCDS can be used to make adjustments to the reported readings in order to get it more in line I believe.
    #31
  32. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    I've just filled up this evening, so will do that test. Incidentally I recorded 64.3mpg today on a 60 mile trip that I normally average low-mid 50's.
    #32
  33. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    Update on economy....

    Over 500ish miles the DIS is giving an avg of 57.6, which is approx 15-20% improvement over stock. However, based on miles covered I'm only showing a 3-5% improvement. Still happy though as I bought the box mainly for performance gains. So don't rely on the DIS!
    #33
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  34. madrussa
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    madrussa Member

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    Most tuning boxes will cause an over estimation on fuel economy as the ECU has been tricked into thinking it's used less fuel. The ECU has tables of data which it uses to calculate the economy and once you have a tuning box which provides the ECU with manipulated data the ECU will incorrectly determine the fuel economy. This doesn't say you're not getting better fuel economy... just you can't trust any of the data the car is giving you.

    The tuning box websites I've seen have this stated somewhere... usually in a smaller font. Or the fuel economy statement has a couple of asterisk next to them without it being declared why.
    #34
  35. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    But the next question is... are you comparing DIS before to brim to brim now? Could have been that the DIS always over-read a bit and you are getting better improvement than you think. Might not be that, but you never know!
    #35
  36. squiretolley
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    squiretolley Active Member

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    No.....

    DIS before = approx 49.5
    DIS after = 57.6

    Tank before = approx 480-490
    Tank after = 505 (460 on odometer + 45 est to fill up)
    #36

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