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Tech Talk – 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning

3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning

The most important thing taken away from this journey into 3.0TFSI ECU Tuning and the SIMOS8.x ECU was that Different =/= Worse.

First and foremost, Driver Motorsport has always been experts with the Bosch ECU. The Bosch ECU is where we make our living. We’ve done hundreds of different ECU software versions and multiple generations of the Bosch ECU across many platforms. We’re at the cutting edge of Bosch ECU Technology and producing ECU Calibrations for the newest Audi / VW vehicles.

However, Up until 5 months ago my knowledge of the modern Continental SIMOS ECU was zilch. Considering I’m responsible for Driver Motorsport‘s ECU Calibrations I knew this was a bridge I was going to have to cross to keep up with the times in VW / Audi ECU tuning. I’ve known that the EA888 Gen 3 was going to be using the SIMOS ECU since 2012 and it’s been in the back of my mind ever since.

I began development on our 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning offerings 5 months ago. Bar none, the 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning development was the most fun I’ve had in 2014. Getting into a new engine management system and a higher output engine found in a modern S-Line Audi definitely makes work more enjoyable.


3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning



Engine Calibration:

For obvious reasons, the 3.0 TFSI is much different than any of the other engines found in modern Audi vehicles. From a calibration standpoint, it meant a vastly different approach.

There’s a belief that getting power out of this engine is simple. All of the 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning solutions will make the same power by simply keeping the RFP (Bypass Valve) from bleeding off boost pressure. In a sense, this is true. I could’ve finished development in a day. As far as increasing power you can receive 90% of what the engine has to give in a few hours.

Since this process took >1 day, that route isn’t the way I went. Outside of the RFP not bleeding off boost pressure, the calibration as a whole can be optimized greatly. You cannot calibrate a way to create more airflow out of the the supercharger. The supercharger’s airflow is capped to a fixed amount per revolution but the volumetric efficiency of the engine is a bit more dynamic. Through phasing of various set points such as lambda, VVT and ignition advance a proper balance was created and the result was large increases in midrange torque. The dyno graph of our 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning Upgrade will not follow the same shape produced by competitors as a result.

Outside of creating horsepower, majority of development time was spent on improving things that will not show up on a dyno sheet. As far as acceleration enhancements go, I’ve included Left Foot Braking to our production file. There were changes made to the ECU’s torque model. These changes allow the transitions to a positive load request to be more responsive to the driver’s request. Throttle Tip-In timing delay was reduced for a faster Tip-In.

The most important changes made were to the ECU’s logic to dynamic conditions. There are re-calibrations to the ECU’s responses to altitude, IAT, EGT and fuel quality. The ECU will limit permissible airflow based off of IAT. Ignition advance is added or subtracted to base ignition timing based off of IAT. Our boost pressure setpoint is set accurately to what the supercharger can realistically produce to allow the ECU to control it’s response to the vehicle’s changing environment. There is optimized lambda enrichment dependent on EGT. The list goes on…

Reverse Engineering SIMOS8.x -

The SIMOS ECU concerns, were largely unfounded. In fact SIMOS and Bosch are more alike than they are different. When developing the 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning solution, the biggest hurdle was not related to the ECU type.

The structure of these 2 different ECUs follow the same principles. As an example, all modern ECUs have to relate airflow to torque. Bosch does this through a Load% to a percentage of torque(0-100%). SIMOS does this same task by taking a MAF measured in kg/h and converting it to a measurement of torque in Nm. Ignition timing is still based off of VVT and intake manifold runner flap position. Both ECUs are working with a torque model with principles that are similar. In a sense, it’s merely learning new nomenclature and different takes from 2 separate manufacturers on the same topics.

The future outlook for Driver Motorsport and the next step to modern SIMOS ECU Management is promising. I think that this 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning Upgrade will reflect that. We’re already working with SIMOS12/18 on the EA888 Gen 3. We have quite a few surprises in store on that front.. That’d be for another blog post :-)


In summary..

I believe if you’re selling a $1,000 ECU flash for a $50,000 car it goes without saying that it needs to be more advanced than a simple increase in horsepower. I think we accomplished that with the 3.0 TFSI ECU Tuning Upgrade. The expected release of this software is first quarter of 2015.

Bronson Dixon / CEO















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