Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tint Installed, and Dyno Baseline

As I mentioned previously in my mods plan post, window tint is one of the first modifications on my list.  It looks good, keeps the interior cooler in the summer, and makes items inside the car less obvious to snooping thieves.  We had our friends from TNT Tint come and tint the windows of our 335i.  We've used TNT for many years, and have always been happy with the work.  The tint material is charcoal non-metallic film from Madico.  The result is shown here.

In anticipation of getting a dyno result for the Cobb AccessPort, we strapped the 335i to the Dynojet chassis dyno for some baseline (pre-modifications) numbers.  The car put down 266 whp and 278 ft-lbs of torque to the rear wheels.  That's pretty standard for a 335i, but a little higher than we'd expect for a car with 300 crank horsepower.  Our usual rule of thumb is a 15% drivetrain loss for a 2WD car, so most cars with 300 crank hp would put down about 255 to the wheels.

When we tried to apply the AccessPort tune, we were denied -- the AccessPort wasn't yet programmed with our car's particular ROM, so we have to wait until the engineers at Cobb Tuning update the AccessPort so it can work with our vehicle.

Turns out the AccessPort has a handy utility built-in to make it easy to send your ROM file back to Cobb Tuning.  If the AccessPort does not recognize your ECU, it'll pop up an option to download the ROM to the AccessPort.  Select that, wait a few minutes, and then hook the AccessPort up to your PC.  The ROM file can be downloaded and sent off to Cobb's tuners.

Once the file is back here we'll reflash the car and get some revised dyno numbers.  Watch this space.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Cobb AccessPort for 335i Announced!

The Cobb AccessPort is a tuning device that I've been using for many years.  It was first released in 2004 for the Subaru WRX, and I've been conducting custom dyno-tuning sessions using the AccessPort since that time.  Even though there are other tuning tools for the Subaru, the AccessPort is my preferred tuning suite.

Last week Cobb Tuning announced an AccessPort for BMW N54-engine cars.  It will come with maps for a couple of different combinations of hardware modifications, and will also allow for custom tuning.  Here at Mach V Motorsports we intend to use the N54 AccessPort on our own car, and will take advantage of it to develop our own calibrations for the car.

The AccessPort has several advantages compared to many of the other tuning solutions that are available for the 335i.  Since it uses the original ECU, there are no wires to hook up other than a single OBD-II port plug.  Once the reprogramming is complete the AccessPort can be removed from the car.  The AccessPort programming retains all the car's factory safety features and limiters -- they are adjusted as appropriate, without having to fool or "trick" the ECU by editing the sensor signals.  The AccessPort can be easily removed and the car reverted to stock at any time, again without doing any physical modification of the car.

This definitely changes the marketplace in terms of tuning tools for the turbo BMWs.  I'm very excited about the AccessPort.  Stay tuned for real-world dyno results!