If you're looking for higher power or better fuel economy from your car, you may consider opting for a better model. However, modern cars are very expensive and this can leave a massive hole in your pocket that takes a long time to repair. Another (cheaper!) way of boosting your car's performance is to remap the engine, which will make your journeys that much more enjoyable.
What Is Engine Remapping?
In contrast to older vehicles, modern cars contain an ECM (Engine Control Module) that keeps your engine running and handles any problems with the motor. When your vehicle was being constructed, the manufacturers will have de-tuned this ECM so that one standard model can be used throughout the world. This is done to account for different climates, fuel types and laws that effectively determine how cars can be driven in each country.
As such, it's likely that this de-tuning process is forcing your vehicle to perform at a less than optimum level. Re-tuning (or remapping) your ECM can unlock your car's hidden potential and bring considerable benefits for both you and the vehicle.
What Can Be Gained From Remapping?
The term "remap" suggests that there are large alterations being made to the engine's mechanics, which may be why some people are worried about tuning up their car in this manner. However, the process is extremely safe for nearly every engine, and it can make your drive that much more enjoyable.
Firstly, you'll notice that a remapped engine makes your accelerator much easier on the foot. You won't have to press down so hard while overtaking, and the overall handling of acceleration will be much smoother. This is because remapping gives your engine a much more acute sense of torque, delivering power to your wheels much more quickly than with a standard engine.
Secondly, your wallet is likely feel the effect of a remapped engine when it comes to topping up your gas. During normal commute and leisure journeys, you'll notice that your MPG is significantly improved, minimizing your carbon footprint and keeping dollars in your pocket.
Are Remaps Suitable For Everyone?
The short answer is yes, remaps can benefit any driver due to the reasons outlined above. However, when considering a remap, you have to weigh up the cost against the potential gains on your engine.
If you currently drive a turbo-injected petrol or diesel car, then the benefits on offer are immense and you should definitely consider remapping your vehicle's engine for optimum performance. However, if you drive a standard model then the gains will be fairly minimal and you may feel that the tune-up isn't worth the initial investment.
Additionally, many drivers are content with how their current vehicle handles and aren't looking for an extra edge while on the road. This is understandable, as many people use their car exclusively as a means of commuting and may not feel the real benefits of a remapped engine. However, if you consider yourself a bit of a leisure driver who likes to open up the car's potential on an open road, then an engine remap is exactly what you need!
Are There Any Drawbacks?
There's a common concern among drivers that remapping their engine will cause problems with their car. However, this concern is typically unfounded and your car's reliability shouldn't be affected as long as you use a competent mechanic for this car tune up. With that said, remaps do put some additional stress on your vehicle's engine. This usually is a small amount, and definitely isn't enough to permanently damage your vehicle.
Most cars are designed to offer better performance than they actually deliver, due to the fact that cars are typically launched as part of a "line" with different bodies and performance. The higher performance vehicles aren't equipped with new engines; rather, the earlier versions of the model are simply limited to allow performance vehicles to sell better. Therefore, your current car likely has a large amount of unlocked potential that a remap can bring to the surface!