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Would you or did you use an ECU tune?

  • Yes - VF

    Votes: 15 42.9%
  • Yes - APR

    Votes: 6 17.1%
  • Yes - VR

    Votes: 1 2.9%
  • Yes - DME

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Yes - Other

    Votes: 4 11.4%
  • No - Not Interested

    Votes: 7 20.0%
  • No - Not Worth It

    Votes: 2 5.7%
  • No - Other

    Votes: 0 0.0%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The topic of tunes was coming up in another thread, and rather than further hijack it, I decided to start another thread here on it.

Considering that Audi purposefully detuned the V10 for its application in the R8, it does seem logical that it can safely be brought back up to "full power" without a lot of concern. However, I'm always conscious of the fact that tunes can differ substantially from company to company - not only in their safety but in areas like usability and drivability. Most seem to be in the $1k - $1.5k range, which for an additional 40 - 60hp is a bargain, I suppose.

I'm curious to hear the thoughts of those who went for one. Which did you choose and why? Install procedure? Did you ever experience any issues with it? Would you do it again?

Tunes like those from VF seem to allow for at-home installation through OBDII, along with ability to revert back - appealing as there's no mucking with the ECU physically and it doesn't require much to install or revert.
 

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I completely agree that it’s pretty safe to tune it to “full horsepower”. To my knowledge, there is no difference between the base and the plus engines. And percentage wise, 60 HP is not that huge of an increase, so also not a huge risk.

I do not think there is any huge difference between the different tunes. Basically, all the turners can read each other’s settings from cars that have been tuned. So there is no “secrete sauce” that any one tuner has figured out. I recommend going for the most convenient and lowest price option. I like VF Engineering, because you can install the tune yourself (assuming you have a Windows laptop) and you can switch it back to stock yourself as well.
 

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2020 R8 V10 Performance Spyder
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I completely agree that it’s pretty safe to tune it to “full horsepower”. To my knowledge, there is no difference between the base and the plus engines. And percentage wise, 60 HP is not that huge of an increase, so also not a huge risk.

I do not think there is any huge difference between the different tunes. Basically, all the turners can read each other’s settings from cars that have been tuned. So there is no “secrete sauce” that any one tuner has figured out. I recommend going for the most convenient and lowest price option. I like VF Engineering, because you can install the tune yourself (assuming you have a Windows laptop) and you can switch it back to stock yourself as well.
agree with the above. I think they’re all pretty much the same with slight changes between them to make them their own. I think it was @RS4Cab who once removed a tune on his Gen1 after years of use and actually preferred the way it drove. Can’t remember the exact details but I’ve tagged him (hopefully it was him and not someone else I’m mixing him up with haha).

My first R8, V10 coupe had the Unitronic tune. It came with the car so I never drove it without but I was told the tune (along with upgraded air intakes and exhaust) would bring up the horsepower to about 600-605. Pretty impressive number as this was around the Huracan was unveiled with its 610hp.

My second R8, V10 Spyder didn’t have a tune and I wanted to do it (with Unitronic again) but never got around to it and truthfully I didn’t really miss it. So ingigufured why spend the money? I also sort of gave up on the performance part of the car. At the time I owned my Spyder (2018-2021), I had driven a few of the newer, more updated cars in that category (570S, Huracan, gen2 R8 V10 plus etc) and I knew the tune wouldnt make it feel as fast as any of those cars so I decided to enjoy the car for what it was, the last of the manual, naturally aspirated, glorious sounding with the top down experience.

Not sure if any of that means or changes anything for you, but that’s my story!
 
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I have the APR tune on mine and would certainly have it done again. I went for this particular one purely on the basis that Ricky is an agent and since he looks after my car anyway, it was logical that he installed it at well. It was done as a download and didn't require the ECU's to be removed. The additional performance the tune gives is not mind-blowing but is most definately noticable and doesn't appear to have any negative aspects to it. I particularly like the manner in which the power increase is across the majority of the rev range and not just at the top end as some n/a engines can be. Overall it is worth the money and I would certainly recommend it.
 
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Has anyone tuned a RWD yet?

If so what was the change like with respect to driving characteristics?
 

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Having the ability to revert to stock would be a nice option, but nobody probably ever would. I bought my car with an exhaust installed and I do not know if there was other work done to the car since the previous owner was not much of a car guy and he bought it from a Mercedes dealer that also probably knew nothing about the history since I presume they took it in on a trade. I raced a Huracan a couple years ago and we were neck and neck, but it could also be factored on driver possibly. I personally am I bike guy and I get my speed through bikes which are faster than most any of our R8s, so needing more power in my car is not important. Actually my E92 M3 has more than enough power for me on the street and the power is more usable since the R8 accelerates so fast that I am on someone's bumper in seconds.
Cool thread and I will keep checking in on this since bike part sales are slow in January.
 

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Has anyone tuned a RWD yet?

If so what was the change like with respect to driving characteristics?
I'm planning on tuning the RWS once the local guys have it up and running again. I know you are asking about the 2022.
 

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agree with the above. I think they’re all pretty much the same with slight changes between them to make them their own. I think it was @RS4Cab who once removed a tune on his Gen1 after years of use and actually preferred the way it drove. Can’t remember the exact details but I’ve tagged him (hopefully it was him and not someone else I’m mixing him up with haha).

My first R8, V10 coupe had the Unitronic tune. It came with the car so I never drove it without but I was told the tune (along with upgraded air intakes and exhaust) would bring up the horsepower to about 600-605. Pretty impressive number as this was around the Huracan was unveiled with its 610hp.

My second R8, V10 Spyder didn’t have a tune and I wanted to do it (with Unitronic again) but never got around to it and truthfully I didn’t really miss it. So ingigufured why spend the money? I also sort of gave up on the performance part of the car. At the time I owned my Spyder (2018-2021), I had driven a few of the newer, more updated cars in that category (570S, Huracan, gen2 R8 V10 plus etc) and I knew the tune wouldnt make it feel as fast as any of those cars so I decided to enjoy the car for what it was, the last of the manual, naturally aspirated, glorious sounding with the top down experience.

Not sure if any of that means or changes anything for you, but that’s my story!
This was the post I made back then,

"So both my ECUs failed earlier this summer and now has 2 new ones with stock tune. Got a chance yesterday to go up to the dyno I used after I did the Stasis tune to see the difference. At peak power I went from 473whp to 428whp, so lost 45, but stock tune actually has more power up until 5,200rpm. Strange though that my wtq went from 395 to 416, ran my car on a different dyno last year and torque number was also very high. Still debating if I will put the Stasis back on, I feel no difference in power without it and car actually drives much better and none of the CELs that I would get every few weeks"

This was an early tune so they are probably better now but I found the tune gave it the extra power near the top of the RPM range. So even though it did give me a 45 hp bump I never really felt it, I felt the difference my Pedalbox made far more. I never put the tune back on and just went to a supercharger, that made a huge difference. Tunes are probably better now so maybe worth tuning Gen 1
 
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Another consideration is that a VF (and others) will do a custom tune for Gen 1s that adds cracks and pops (overrun) after you let off the throttle. It doesn’t do anything for performance but it is kinda fun. But I do wish it could be turned on/off. This does cost extra.

I have 3 config files: stock, uprated, uprated with fueling overrun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Another consideration is that a VF (and others) will do a custom tune for Gen 1s that adds cracks and pops (overrun) after you let off the throttle. It doesn’t do anything for performance but it is kinda fun. But I do wish it could be turned on/off. This does cost extra.

I have 3 config files: stock, uprated, uprated with fueling overrun.
I could take or leave burbles, but it does look like VF has found some issues with this practice and stopped it as a result. From their website:

"Burble tuning on Gen 1 R8s affects drivability as the functions are not present in the ECU from factory. As of August 2021 we do not offer it as it does not meet our performance standards."
 

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Another consideration is that a VF (and others) will do a custom tune for Gen 1s that adds cracks and pops (overrun) after you let off the throttle. It doesn’t do anything for performance but it is kinda fun. But I do wish it could be turned on/off. This does cost extra.

I have 3 config files: stock, uprated, uprated with fueling overrun.
I'm not sure about the other Gen 2s, but my RWS does this with a stock tune in Dynamic mode.
 
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VF would be my only choice. It’s a very simple reason, they have been the Premier V 10 tuners for over a dozen years now, and have perfected the package they offer. If you follow the instructions for at home flashing it’s cake and well, 50 hp for $1500 is a bargain. They are also the only company I would trust with a supercharger package, that’s their forte as well.
 

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Yea I would only do VF, I tried Fabspeed on my Evo just cause I liked their handheld downloader, bad experience and returned but was still out like $600
 

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Happy with my VF tune which is the stage 1. Are you guys running stage 1 or 2? I couldn't find any info on the VF site about stage 2 but I'm assuming that's 93 octane maybe?
 

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I could take or leave burbles, but it does look like VF has found some issues with this practice and stopped it as a result. From their website:

"Burble tuning on Gen 1 R8s affects drivability as the functions are not present in the ECU from factory. As of August 2021 we do not offer it as it does not meet our performance standards."
It doesn't surprise me that VF stopped offering this. There are some annoyances, mostly that above about 5000 RPM when revving the engine in neutral. Basically, the engine will keep running like you are still depressing the throttle pedal for about 2 seconds, instead of just burbling and letting the RPMs fall. I haven't noticed it during actual driving though.

I'm not sure about the other Gen 2s, but my RWS does this with a stock tune in Dynamic mode.
The Gen 2 ECUs have additional fueling tables that specifically support overrun/burbles. So all Gen 2s are capable of burbles, and I think aftermarket tunes can change the duration of the burbles in Gen 2s as well.
 

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Those who did the VF ECU tune, did you hook the battery up with a charger as recommended?
 

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Those who did the VF ECU tune, did you hook the battery up with a charger as recommended?
I always do that, not a big deal since I leave pigtail connector always on battery
 

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Those who did the VF ECU tune, did you hook the battery up with a charger as recommended?
ive never seen anything drain a battery faster than installing a tune for some reason. i've killed batteries mid install on other cars and will never make that mistake again
 

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Another consideration is that a VF (and others) will do a custom tune for Gen 1s that adds cracks and pops (overrun) after you let off the throttle. It doesn’t do anything for performance but it is kinda fun. But I do wish it could be turned on/off. This does cost extra.

I have 3 config files: stock, uprated, uprated with fueling overrun.
my f type did this and its cool at first but feels childish quickly. i dunno, just feels like it belongs on honda civics and wrx's but not high end cars
 
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