Engine tuning and mapping Lucifer's Ultimate Guide 2: Tuning the 1.4TSI

Ok, I'm back again after a rather mixed year of injury through to success (see another thread those who want to know)

I have managed to create the first successful stage 3 1.4tsi in the UK, arguably the fastest road legal one in the World. It is well over 300bhp at the moment and the final dyno and performance figures will be seen next year so keep your eyes open

This tuning guide will give even the most inexperienced person the understanding on tuning this car to be a giant killer. Not only that, it can be done on a budget. Again, all the information given is all correct and is based on all my own experience and the findings of reliable sources.


PRE TUNING WARNING

Make sure you have the updated parts highlighted in the first guide. These include the breather modification, injectors, coil packs, spark plugs, water pump and most importantly the pistons. I could not give advice with good conscious to map a car with the old versions a as they are ticking time bombs. Modifications that increase power through improving efficiency like intakes,intercoolers and exhausts would be OK to do and with all three on a stock car I gained 25bhp at the top of the Rev range.The cost vs reward though I would not say is worth it. You need a good remap to make the most out of these modifications.


REMAPPING: REVO VS APR VS CUSTOM

Custom

If you have any desire to go further than stage 2 then I would start with a custom map as there are no company's offering stage 3 maps off the shelf. Not only will it be customised to all your modifications but upgrades will be cheap and they will work with you to get the most out of your car. Most importantly, you need to find a tuner that does their mapping in house. Some get the car mapped remotely over the Internet or sub contract other mappers, problems occur with consistency of work quality and the fact the mapper never even sees the car he is working on.

AVOID: Shark Performance and AmD who don't do their own maps. Shark damaged a friends car and over stressed another friends turbo. AmD messed my DSG software up by trying to access it without the right security coding and sent it into safe mode which left me with only gears 1,3,5,7. They would not accept responsibility for it at all. My current tuner confirmed they had triggered an anti tamper device.

GOOD: Jabbasport; heard good things from every one of their customers

Revo Vs APR

The good thing about these is they both have alot of experience with this engine.

Revos early software was brutal and the fastest ever 1/4 mile was done on their stage 1 software. They later detuned their stage 1 after the problem with this engine came to light. Revo blew their piston in their development car working on stage 2+ software which they later found to be the fault of the vw fuelling management code. They re wrote this and along with different plugs cured the problem. People like myself came flocking to them just to get a reliable car.They called it quits with the stage 2 software and pulled all development on this engine. Revo now have employed someone to answer the phone so you can't get through directly to a tuner. If you ask her a question, she refers to a cheat sheet and basically reads off the information on there. Not what it used to be.

Apr worked on VSRy's hybrid 1.4tsi and unlocked a few secrets regarding torque limits which they managed to bypass. This unlocked so much more performance that Revo hadn't accessed with their mapping. The 1/4mile was then broken by APR's stage 2 software and still stands today due to its mid range grunt. I have always found you can have a good exchange with a technician from Apr and they are really helpful.

BOTTOM LINE: APR if going up to stage 2, CUSTOM If stage 3
COST: £400


INTAKE: FORGE VS ITG VS CUSTOM

There are only really two off the shelf offerings here... FORGE and ITG.
There are a few European offerings but not alot of evidence to rely on. Having seen a dyno comparing the ITG to the FORGE, the ITG is far superior. It's actually the one vw racing use. It's called the maxogen induction kit. I use this myself.
On the ibiza, it takes cold air from a pocket of low pressure behind the headlight.

I modified the kit by getting 2 silicone hoses and 90 degree bend so it took the air from the grill. I had to cut away alot of the plastic around where the original intake took its air to pull the ducting through. This uses the force of the air hitting the grill at high speeds to assist the air getting through the filter. It will be colder too.

Although a custom would be better than stock, you need a decent filter like a MAXOGEN filter and a heat shield because of the heat of this engine is so great. So in this case you might aswell go off the shelf and straight for the ITG MAXOGEN induction kit.

BOTTOM LINE: ITG all the way
COST:£300-350(for carbon limited edition one. available on demand from ITG)


EXHAUST: MILLTEK VS SCORPION VS CUSTOM

For off the shelf both offerings are around the same price, have the same spec pipe and both have a good reputation. The big difference is the location of the catalytic converter. On the MILLTEK it is on the downpipe, on the SCORPION it is after the downpipe underneath the car.This actually makes a huge difference in theory. Your downpipe is where all the gains come forming performance, the rest if the system (cat back) as long as it is of a certain size, then its only worth a couple of horses.
So the SCORPION is the one to go for because they have essentially increased the length of pipe before the cat (downpipe) and decreased the part that makes little difference(cat back).

Custom is another option and if you can find yourself a good local exhaust fabricator, you can have your exhaust done for half the price of the off the shelf offerings. size wise you need to go as big as possible on the downpipe which is 3" but due to the sump at the bend underneath the car, you are forced to go down to 2.5" from there till the end I'd the exhaust. Most exhaust fabricators don't do a 2.75 which is what the SCORPION and MILLTEK are so that's the advantage of the off the shelf ones. That is offset though by the fact you can go up to 3" on the down pipe with the custom.
The beauty with the custom is you can select your silencer so you can have it as loud(no silencer) or as quiet as you want just by telling the fabricator. A 100cell catalytic converter after the downpipe will give you the advantage of the SCORPION too. You will have to extend the lambda probe lead so it has enough length now the cat is further away.

BOTTOM LINE: Custom will be cheaper and better for what you want. If your goal is stage 2 then go 2.5" all the way and you'll find your turbo will have more pick up than 3" to 2.5". If you plan on going further then go 3" downpipe to 2.5" catback.
A less restricted exhaust will help the issues with the engine as it will clear exhausts gasses better


DECAT WARNING.... Tbc
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