Has anyone got this chip or is anyone seriously considering it in the near future?
Figures are great, but nothing beats a real world perspective on this modification.
Also, does anyone know what happens if you take your car for a service with these chips?
02-07-2000, 01:41 AM
I'v been reading about AmD and Superchips. Trouble is the warranty. I think the main way the dealer would tell that the car has been chipped is if they drive it. I've also been told that it may show up on their diagnostic equipment, mainly as boost exceeded errors, that sort of thing.
I don't know if you know any of this already...
The OEM chip in the A3 is soldered to the board. So the best thing to do is to get them to solder on a socket in it's place. You can then simply plug in the new chip. And when the car goes back to the dealer, plug in the old OEM chip.
Some companies like Wetterauer even provide a switch so that you can swap between "programs" as you are driving along.
But I'd also like some feedback on Amd or Superchips chips in the A3. There must be someone out there with one?
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver
02-07-2000, 03:42 AM
One of the local dealers, Aston Green in Slough ,often have chipped, bodykitted demos.Their chip work is done by AmD.When I asked about the warranty i was told that as long as it came back to them for servicing there would be no problem ! I not convinced , but it is an enlightened view by a dealer.
I am sure it will show up on the diagnostic equipment.
I am hoping to do the A3 within the next couple of months and if I can prise it away from her the 180bhp A4 sooner.She says it feels a bit slugish now ! The A4 is not going to show the same huge increase as the 150 bhp engines.
02-07-2000, 04:08 AM
02-07-2000, 10:23 AM
I too have read about the Wett chips and they sound like they are probably the best option although are, and correct me please, unavailable easily in the UK. I knwo a little about ECU mapping - enough to know that the best way is to have a chip tailored to an individial engine on a rolling road.
The superchip gives a smaller power increase (+30bhp)?? than the AmD, right?
Also, it would have to be warranty compatible because a 3 year warranty is not something to throw away with all the electrics on the car. I take Chris's point of Aston Green Audi and have heard that they "support" chipping before but if you asked your own dealer and they said no, they may be more likely to check in the future - paranoid? If my experience of dealers is anything to go by (not including audi in this as my a3 is my first) they will no very little about the subject. Definately a switching unit would be great.
Finally, what toll would the engine etc take from upping the power? I'm told that the 1.8TQ with 180bhp has different mechanical bits - is this right or is the 180bhp effectively just chipped?
I would love to upgrade the car - just imagine...
I will wait for further information however.
02-07-2000, 04:10 PM
You are right to be cautious. So am I. Three years is a big and useful warrenty to just throw away. I mean, the A3 1.8T isn't exactly slow is it? But it would be nice to just have that extra bit of grunt, to really blow away Mondeo/Vectra/BMW drivers. The A3 1.8T does a good job already, but it's all too close for my liking.
You are right about it's best to have the car chipped whilst on the rolling road. But I know that superchips only do this during development, or under special circumstances. As far as I understand it, if you go to a superchips (modem) dealer. They dial up to the superchips head office, download the appropriate code for your ECU, and give it a try. If it doesn't work quite right, the dealer can contact superchips and they can adjust the various parameters to suit the particular car. I am actually waiting confirmation on this, so I'll let you know.
You are right the superchips website lists a 30bhp gain, and Amd 40bhp (I think?). But what is confusing is: in recent articles that I have read on the Superchip'd TT180, they list 162bhp at the wheels and about 190bhp at the flywheel. And Superchips themselves have said it varies from car-to-car.
Essentially I think the main difference between the 150 and the 180 engines is the chip. The 180 is basically an already chipped 150. But according to Audi UK's website, and this is interesting, there could be more to it:
"The new models [A3 1.8TQ] five-valve, four-cylinder turbo engine and it's quattro drive system are similar to those fitted to the 180bhp version of the new Audi TT Coupe quattro. That means a new cylinder head fitted with tumble-effect inlet ports, electric throttle valve actuation and a new Montronic ME 7.5 engine management system." (10/09/1999)
Engine strain: From what I've read in the performance forum, and those guys are doing serious mods, chipping will put the engine and it's components under more stress. It's bound to. What those effects will be long term and whether the engines can withstand it, is anyones guess. But if anyones car does go pop due to extreme chipping and power increases, it will happen in that forum! :)
I wonder if/why Audi changed the cylinder head for the 1.8TQ (180)?
Anyway, this is a great discussion, if you find out anymore let us know...
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver
02-08-2000, 12:35 AM
Hi, I have chipped my A3 TQ (180bhp) with a chip from a local Swedish developer (BSR). They claim 215 bhp and 323 Nm torque. I'm not sure these are what it give but it certainly is a real performace increase. I clocked my 0-100 km/h to 6.7 s with slow gear changes and spiked winter tyres, of course the error margin for one run and manual timing when driving is quite large. I haven't been able to do more serious clocking but will do that as soon as spring and dry roads are here.
Apart from the performance increase I haven't noticed any changes.
BSR claim that the 215 bhp chip only work on the 180bhp engine (TT/A3/4/6S(180)).
If you are upgrading I can recommend BSR!
02-08-2000, 02:05 AM
Guys, I think that if one is talking about moderate modification (30-40bhp) to the engine management system by way of chip then the stress on the car/engine components is very minimal. Afterall 1.8T is a turbo rated unit with V5 technology that has very efficient combustion without too much strain.
I think in producing 1.8T engine with V5 technology Audi almost targeted at an enthusiast-level market. The engine is one of the best 4cyl. units in the world but in its initial 150bhp version it was tuned or rather de-tuned to satisfy wide market (A4, A3, Golf, Beetle, Seat etc.) and yet retain economy and comfort for all kinds of drivers, ladies etc.
With just under 200bhp your A3 will be fit to stand against some other fast street cars and be more pleasant to drive with extra torque/more power to spare when cruising at higher gears.
I would not consider modification much in excess of 50% of current power as then some other body parts will start to come under increasing stress, i.e. brakes, tyres, turbo.
Unless you're into racing or motorshows you will be quite pleased with 180/190bhp mod to your A3's. Stick in K&N panel filter when you upgrade chips and you'll be smiling.
02-08-2000, 02:21 AM
Me again on the same topic..
On the issue of tailored-programmed chips I think that for modest mods, i.e. first step upgrade 30-40bhp you will not go wrong if you pick up one of the off-the shelf chips by major tuners (Wett, AmD, MTM etc.) for A3 but!
1.8T unit has now been around for almost 5 years and tuners must have learned a lot about its engine management characteristics.
I really think that if you start pushing your engine to the limits - 286bhp and over, and with the addition of other engine components such as bigger turbo, larger inter-cooler, modified manifold then the re-programming and testing of the chip can extract better performace (and safety) by fine-tuning the air-fuel-emission equation.
02-08-2000, 04:53 AM
Thanks Martin yours is the first information I have seen on the 180bhp engine .Yes the cylinder head is different but nowhere have I seen published how much it is worth and most people probably think it is just a chipped 150 bhp.
In fact whilst it would be handy to quote 'over 200bhp' it is torque that is more important in everyday driving but fortunately these engines seem to increase torque at the same % as bhp.
02-08-2000, 09:54 AM
I would be interested to know, apart from the increased acceleration, how the car now drives.
One of the major reasons I chose the a3 was the quiet, refined character of the car. When driving, I can hear mild turbo whistle, and moderate engine noise at high revs. I realise that you have a different engine but I'd be interested to know how it affects the refinement of the car - do you get more turbo whistle, is it intrusive? How about the overall character of the engine?
I fiddled with the engine in my last car and bought induction kits etc.. they had a huge effect on noise, refinement etc. I like the stealthy manner the a3 travels at speed and would be dissapointed to mod mine into a noisy - obviously modified car. There are too many boy racers in my area driving Novas with 6 inch tail pipes creating more noise that motion - I'm not keen on joining them at the ENT clinic!
02-08-2000, 11:46 PM
David, I havenīt been able to get the audible feel for my chipped car. It is winter, cold, snow, ice and a real mess here in Sweden so the spiked tires sound more that the engine. I have noticed a deeper growling sound at low revs but it must be from the air filter. I also have heard that the turbo whistles more when it is cold.
If you are interested in the 215 bhp BSR chip, take a look at the URL below with diagrams. (The BSR site is in Swedish).
Just thought I'd ask you a similar question to what David R asked Martin. What's it like to drive? - especially in the wet.
Getting the power down even in a standard A3 can be a fine art in the wet, but with 190bhp and front wheel drive, I bet it gets a bit tricky?
You are running on bigger wheels aren't you? Did you try 190bhp with the standard 16's? What was it like wet and dry?
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver
02-09-2000, 03:27 PM
I am going to get my S3 chipped by AMD, but through Aston Green Audi.
I have spoken to them and they will 'honour' the Audi warranty as long as you have your car serviced by them. The extra cost you pay Aston Green over AMD is an insurance policy.
AMD remove your chip and remap it and them fine tune on a rolling road to suit your car, afterall not 2 engines are the same.
02-09-2000, 10:46 PM
Don't know much about oversteer/understeer so I'll try to explain what it feels to drive it.
I guess its like any other FWD, there is a need to be careful and 'listen' to the front in order not to spin. Those extra 40bhp's do not really alter 1.8T that much. It's all about driveability rather than traffic-light starts (even though they are good). I agree with other comments that ESD does not really help.
I enjoy acceleration and speed but quite frankly I do not extract every possible bhp from my A3 when I drive it so the spin is the least of my problems.
In the wet the only major issue seems to be wheel-spin due to a sudden encountering of an uneven surface while cornering (i.e man-hole).
Basically anything that forces the suspension to travel diagonally the same moment as up/down makes A3 loose traction momentarily. The only reason I could think of was the stiff set-up of Ambition suspension. Sometimes it does not travel far enough to avoid loosing traction.
Otherwise 17" wheels are definitely better than 16". I think its not the size that matters, but its the offset of the wheel/tyre away from the hub. With larger wheels A3 has more traction in dry (don't know if its the case in the wet, perhaps little more), steers better and all that but what you really get is a huge increase in cornering stability, at least with my wheels. That's beacuse the extra width on my 17x8 wheels over 16x7 is not either side but more on the outer side, i.e. givving the effect of slightly wider wheel base. Not only looks good but drives good in the corners.
One other thing I noticed is the impact of tyre pressures on traction. With my wheels the higher the pressure the better the traction. I do not know what to make of it because with my 4x4 car I used to deflate tyres to increase the traction off-road?! I am still experimenting with this one.
Not sure if I answered your question, so just to add: 205 vs 225 tyre does not seem to add much more starting traction. You'll notice the tyre more while cornering and driving than kick-starting.
02-10-2000, 12:56 AM
Thanks for your views.
Yes. I'd like an improved 0-60mph time, but as you say, the biggest improvements with these chips (from what I've read) is in the mid-range.
I understand what you're saying about the handling and the bigger wheels + offset. By effectively increasing the wheel base, you're making the car wider, thus improving the cornering ability. Plus with wider tyres, grip is improved (in the dry).
So, you think the standard 16x7 wheels could handle the extra power, providing one pays close attention to how much throttle one gives when setting off in the wet.
Anyway, thanks again.
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver
02-10-2000, 01:15 AM
02-10-2000, 03:12 PM
Making the wheels wider shouldn't improve the 0-60mph time. For sure the wider wheels make the car more stable under sudden weight distribution and the extra grip gained by wider rubber allows you to enter corners at higher speeds, but that same extra grip usually adds a couple 1/10 seconds to your 0-60mph time.
I worked a couple of months at BMW Turkey as a summer intern, and this is what we have been tought in one of their training courses: "One of the main objects in car design is to make the components which remain below the suspension system as light as possible (I don't know the term in English, but here the engineers call the weight of such components "unbalanced weight"). That's why every car maker started using light alloys as the core material of wishbones and trailing arms etc. The less weight is put below the suspension the better the car should handle. This is one of the main reasons for choosing light alloy wheels".
I'm not an engineer and everything I wrote above might be complete rubbish. If so, please correct me.
'00 Black S3
02-10-2000, 11:10 PM
Even though once upon a time I lived in the UK I forgot about the impact of weather on driving (sometimes a bit wet, no?).
I think that 16x7 wheel is fine for 40bhp mod, after all that's how my car originally came.
A3 is still a hatch-back and not many of those come with 16x7 or 195-205 tyres so its definitely good for this car which has a nice combination of chassis-suspension-wheel even in stock setup.
I also agree with below comment by ravenx that wider weel does not make starts quicker, its all about stability and cornering.
If you ever asked me about the order of modification for A3 1.8T I would always say things should come in following order:
- chip + panel filter (together) = greatest hatch
- bigger wheels + tyres = S3 without quattro
- all other goodies = nicer cosmetic appearance
02-13-2000, 10:29 AM
02-15-2000, 03:10 AM
02-16-2000, 01:03 AM
prices for an AMD rechip of S3 is 750+VAT.
Aston Green S3 charges 1175 inc vat for an AMD rechip.
You can got to www.auto-amd.com and have a look at what else they do.
03-05-2000, 03:26 PM
On the issue of chipping I have heard that a dealer can flash an ECU, in that case if you got to know them really well could you convince them to flash a 150bhp ecu with the 180 quattros software? also has no one considered having there ecu chipped in the states prices I have seen start as low as $200, 130 quid! to you and me in the UK with fully insured shipping both ways costing another Ģ100, and the americans although they don't advertise that they chip the A3 are starting to because of demand and excessive european prices, try neuspeed or apr and look at what thay do to the A4 turbo.