Critical to the performance of any combination of mechanical modifications is the engine management system. The key word here is system. There are many parameters of engine management that must be controlled in concert to come up with that elusive combination of high output, safe operation and drivability.

Most folks start down the ‘modification’ path with a set of chips - like the good old Autothority chips that have been around for ages. These can work well with minor mods to an other wise stock engine. Once you start swapping turbos and other parts you quickly get outside their range of control.

After that come the ‘piggy back’ systems - its their prime job to fool the stock DME computer into providing the correct timing and mixtures to support the modifications to the system. The piggy back systems can use either the stock flow meter or an after market mass air flow or some even convert the sensing system to a MAP (manifold air pressure) system.

The key similarity is that these systems rely on ‘fooling’ and 20 year old computer into working with a modified system - and you know what - some of them can do a pretty good job with the right know how behind them and (this is an important and) a sound 20 year old computer and wiring harness. The condition of a lot of the stock harnesses is less than optimal and the DMEs are known for cold solder joints creating intermittent failures and glitches - not what you want to trust your modified engine with.

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So what’s the solution?

Standalone Engine Management. This is the complete replacement of the stock ‘brains’ and harness with a modern computer that is capable of far more than the stock DME system. a standalone system is user programable so that an experienced tuner can get the ‘system’ of modifications to work together seamlessly.

Before I go into my favorite pick for this application I want to stress the most important element in the decision of what standalone system to use - its all about the support from the vendor/tuner. just owning a little black box will not even get your engine running much less that running well. You will need the support of the vendor that you purchased the unit from for installation instructions, base maps to get you started and an almost unending supply of answers to your questions. I have had to ‘save’ quite a few people that purchased units (from a variety of suppliers) from questionable vendors and then receive no support, in fact the president of Electromotive (Fred Schuettler) has referred customers to me that required help beyond the capabilities of the original vendors.

The decision to go to a standalone system is not one to be taken lightly - it is a very powerful tool that requires special knowledge - either you need to learn the fundamentals or you need to get the right tuner/engine management supplier involved - or better yet - both!

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Screen shot from Wintec4 - available soon!


Our Solution

I have been working with the Electromotive Tec3 for over 5 years and I believe that it is one of the most accurate systems out there. Sure, there are others with fancier cases and more ‘wizz-bang’ looking software but what I care about is the accuracy and programability of the ECU. i could give you a dissertation about how the 60-2 tooth wheel works and the internal mmodeling of the timing calculations but the simple answer is that there is no system out there that has a more accurate spark timing system. Here is a little quote from the Electromotive literature -

“What separates Electromotive's sophisticated Engine Control from those of other manufacturers, is its patented, industry leading Direct Fire Ignition system. With both the stand-alone HPX ignition systems and the Total Engine Control systems, Electromotive utilizes a 58-tooth crank trigger wheel. This “high resolution” signal feeds continuous information to custom ignition chips so that error is virtually eliminated. This "high resolution" circuitry is used to accurately determine both the coil charge time and the Ignition Event in actual angular values (degrees of crank rotation). This eliminates the dynamic error that the competition suffers from. Others may claim ¼º degree accuracy, but without this accurate crankshaft position information, they’re just wishing.”

Most folks perseverate on the air fuel ratios - that’s easy stuff compared to the ignition side of the equation - and how often do you hear about the other guys ignition system?

The 944 Enhancement Tec3 Wiring Harness

The 944 Enhancement Tec3 kit includes the following -

  • Electromotive Tec3r or Teclite ECU
  • Electromotive Coil Pack
  • Custom Wiring Harness
  • Custom 944 trigger wheel
  • Custom 944 Crank Trigger Bracket
  • TPS adapter
  • Knock Sensor Adapter
  • Coil Pack Bracket
  • New Sensors - MAP, MAT, TPS, Crank Trigger and Idle Air Adapter
  • Base file with programming to match customers application
  • Loads of Tech support!

The harness and base file are designed around the customers modifications and options. The Tec3r can be programmed to perform the following options:

  • Raise the idle when the AC is turned on
  • Turn on shift lights at programmed RPM
  • Control boost level
  • control water injection
  • Run a second set of fuel injectors
  • Engage Variocam or Vtec systems
  • Fuel and Timing trim knobs
  • Many, many more possibilities based on RPM, manifold pressure, coolant temp and more.
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The Engine dyno cell. This is where you can get some serious tuning done. We use an engine dyno to dial in the base maps (BIN files) for general engine arrangements (8v 2.5 up to 16v 3.1 liter). The individual tweaks to match custom engine combinations can be done with a little in car testing and retuning.

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