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Old 22nd March 2013, 22:58   #1
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Default Fiat Punto with RaceDynamics DieselTronic Dual Channel. EDIT: 110 hp, 265 Nm

Prologue:

Date: 09/03/2013.
Scene: Orion Mall, Bangalore.

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http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/shifti...ml#post3061434 (Which watch do you own)
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
While my Kohinoor purchase is still pending - fell for another beauty - this time to gift to my wife.

I dont know how good ck Calvin Klein is (Shows swiss made and all drama), when it comes to watches - but this was too beautiful to ignore! Didnt see anything even close, for ladies, in the particular mall i was visiting. Pics dont do justice, it looks like a mirror attached to steel bangle.

Its going to be an anniversary present for her!

(Pics from internet. Its extremely hard to take photos of this watch, due to the highly reflective nature!).
Note to the reader (If anyone actually is!) - You are on the correct thread. Title is not misleading.
Note to mod - Thread is in the correct section. I'm not going to review a ladies watch.

Here's the actual plan for this thread -

1. Initial ownership Report.
2. Dyno Run and timings.
3. Long term reliability test. With an yearly running of ~30k kms, I hope to test the box for a good 1L kms or more, unless I too get tempted by the remap thingy.
4. Mileage reports for P1 and E modes.
5. Limit the thread to discussions about the box only. For my other ownership reports, please see http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...r-30k-kms.html and http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/sound-...d-dls-jbl.html

In our typical official review style - Special thanks to nkrishnap, KarthikK and Sidhu (3M HSR) for accompanying me during the installation and initial drives and providing their valuable inputs.

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Old 22nd March 2013, 23:44   #2
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Date: 10/03/2013
Scene: The drive home, after a very successful team-bhp meet.

1 year & 30,000 kms.
90hp and 16-17 kmpl (City).
Looks!
Solid build, decent space and equipment.
Sorted ride and handling.
Looks again!

Last year was almost perfect for me. Once a well recognised FIAT basher on the forum (Your's truly!), I was now totally proud to be an owner. Punto turned out to be a very talented all-rounder, way beyond my initial ownership impressions.

Planned Upgrades:

1. Got to change the headunit.
2. Full detailing session.
3. RD dual channel box, by year-end or before Summer - 2014.

But then - I was struggling to keep up with a black T-Jet, a leave-no-survivors Linea, and even a blue Sunny (Initial two gears!). One of those times when you are reminded of the heavy weight penalty imposed by FIAT. Mind you - the car is really capable, just that it 'feels lazy' when made to work hard.

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Old 23rd March 2013, 00:06   #3
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Date: 15/03/2013.
Scene: Cruising somewhere on the ORR.

Tringgg... Tringgg...

Blue & me came in handy - though few mins down the line - I'd be cursing my stars for deciding to answer the call.

CrAzY_WiFe: Do you need to go to office this weekend?
CrAzY dRiVeR: Yes. Both days. 8:30 am to 5:30 pm.

Pause for few seconds.
CrAzY_WiFe: Can you opt for different timings? Saturday?
CrAzY dRiVeR: If only you could have informed me earlier. Now its too late. (Friday already!)

Pause for few seconds.
CrAzY dRiVeR: Why? What happened?
CrAzY_WiFe: I had plannned something, but you are not ready to adjust! What do to! Forget it.

Bang!

What did we plan? I just couldn't recollect anything. May be she wants to go to some mall or something. But whats with the surprise! And the rudeness! Oh wait - thats normal. But still - the surprise?

An usual start to a fight - why did i answer the phone now!

Beep beep... Beep beep.
1 unread sms -

Quote:
I was planning to buy that R Box or something for your car next week. Thats why!





Flashback to crimescene #1 -

Oh yes - She loved her present. I'm sure I'll enjoy mine too!

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 31st March 2013 at 06:41.
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Old 23rd March 2013, 00:37   #4
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nkrishnap: CD, can you take a U-turn here? I'll show you how a T-Jet should be driven.
CrAzY dRiVeR: I need a kilometer more. Traffic was insane till now (Trying to redeem my self-esteem! )

After few seconds, he takes the steering wheel and realizes its the TD car and not my driving to blame. This particular T-Jet we were driving was in a very poor state of upkeep - but then - it was enough to show how good a more powerful Punto/Linea would feel. We, FIAT'ians, are a criticized lot - for the excess baggage carried around by our cars! Although one can argue about the build quality to no end, there is no getting away from the fact that the excess weight and the pronounced turbo lag really bogs you down when you decide to floor pedal-to-metal.

Few minutes later -

We (nkrisnap, KarthikK and their detailing guru- Sidhu) set out for checking the latest performance upgrade package in the segment. While they were busy chatting - my mind echoed the same thoughts - the weight (Of the car of course!) may be one of the reasons for it feeling so lethargic. It was lazy till 2000rpm, effective till 2500 and sounds even lazier to revv higher. 'Lazy' - a word i have come to associate with throttle response more often than not!

Later that night -

Some guys dont like letting others overtake, and this swift guy was a perfect example. I could see him accelerating hard to avoid letting me going through. Downshift to fourth - there is a slight push back into the seats as the turbo opens up. Upshift to 5th - there is that push again, though a light gentle one. Man, this feels a lot better than the abused TJet TD i had early in the morning - I'm grinning from ear to ear.

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Old 24th March 2013, 11:44   #5
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Scene: Some unused service road, near to HSR layout.

Chetan: This is your stock mode. I'm putting it in P2 now. Go for it. I'm really scared of this mode, I didn't allow him (Our friendly mod- mobike008. His initial impressions on the dual channel box for his Cruze here.) to test it in his Cruze.

I did feel a surge of power past 2000 rpm. But then, we ran out of roads.

nkrishnap: So, how's it?
CrAzy dRiVeR: To be frank, I found the surge of power in P2 exciting, but P1 I couldn't judge it properly.

KarthikK: So what rpm does this surge kick in? Any reduction in the lag?
(I threw the key at him, but he politely declined. He had a short try at P2 setting later-on.)

Sidhu: So, buying?
CrAzY dRiVeR : Yes. Let's see how it goes.

Few minutes later-

CrAzY dRiVeR: rpm needle seems to be climbing way faster than earlier. Although the lag still seems to be there, the car is hitting the turbo zone faster, like its become a lot more revv-friendly.
KarthikK: Yes, I see it from the tacho too.
CrAzY dRiVeR: That's the only major difference in find in P1.

Night 10.30pm- I reach home after a long ORR drive from HSR to hebbal.

CrAzY dRiVeR (Sms to KathikK and nkrishnap): I'm really disappointed with something today.

I'm not sure what would have gone through their minds then, but both asked if its the box. May be- its the confidence in 3M HSR. I could not have been disappointed with their work!

CrAzY dRiVeR: I'm disappointed I got my judgement wrong in the morning. Man, P1 is fun, while P2 just keeps pulling and pulling and pulling.

I just couldn't wipe that grin off my face!

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 31st March 2013 at 06:40.
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Old 25th March 2013, 17:22   #6
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Unboxing and installation -

The box contains the below items -

1. The RD piggy-back chip.
2. Connectors.
3. Remote.
4. Warranty Card.
5. 1 RD sticker and 2 DieselTronics stickers.

Pretty simple. Nothing confusing here, and similar is the case with installation as well - as the below pictures suggests -

1. The remote.
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2. RD box along with the 2 connectors marked - One for fuel rail and one for boost pressure.
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3. From inside, there is no way you can no which mode the car is in! From outside -yes.
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4. Don't want to carry the bulky key everywhere - so placed in on the dashboard with double sided tape.
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Old 30th March 2013, 04:23   #7
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Now - for some serious stuff - starting with the insane - P2 mode!

Sidhu: Brakes are good.
nkrishnap: Brakes are good in both Punto and Linea. But the ones on the T-Jet are in a different class!

(I guess Krishna missed the worried look on his face. His comment on the brakes came from a relief that i almost rear- ended an autorick, but thankfully - didn't!).

Frankly - I didn't expect my car to pick up speed so fast! Naturally - I didn't expect I would have to brake that hard. Its when you start using the brakes a lot more that reality dawns on you- this is a transformed car - specially in the turbo zone. And once you give it some stick - it just seems to pull, and pull - and then pull some more! The lazy charecter that was birth-mark of the VGT Punto earlier - is gone, and this new car feels eager and revv-friendly.

At this point - I'd have liked to use superlatives like - 'My car eats VW 1.6s, TDIs, Vernas for breakfast, lunch and dinner' etc - - but well, I'm on diet and hence - strictly no eating other cars! It does seem to hit 100 kmph faster than stock though - and a lot easier than before, thanks to the new revv-happy nature. Will need to wait till I can get some figures to justify the claim. Mind you - the car may/ may not be slower than the heavy weights mentioned earlier - my only comparison right now - is with the stock 90HP - and boy - the fun qoutient has increased by leaps and bounds, specially in 3rd, 4th and 5th!

And its addictive fun - no doubt! The moment you get an open road - there is this nagging itch - to switch to P2 and feel the adrenalin rush - something I had missed since my good old P180 DTSi days. I think I'm an engine guy too - nowadays - I just switch off the music - to listen to the diesel clatter! And the way the power comes in after 2000 rpm is just fantastic compared to the stock car - and to some extent scary - in that it really can catch you unaware when you are driving new, or trying P2 mode after long time.

Speaking of which - NVH levels seem fairly unchanged. Noise levels seem to have increased a bit, however VH part of it might be slightly lesser - thanks to the new found revv-happy nature. Visible smoke? Nothing seen from the RVM atleast, will need to check properly.

The bad news?

Its a diesel afterall with a narrow powerband compared to petrols- coupled with FIATs infamous gear ratios in the initial 2 gears. This will have an effect on the timings (if are are that savvy about numbers).

To qoute KarthikK - 'Its a big improvement over stock 90HP. But a T-Jet (Figures might look not so different, on paper) feels 2X faster than stock 90HP and 1.5X faster than the P2 mode.

FAQ

1. Reliability?

They say its still tuned well within the limits, and the settings have been properly tested on various cars over long distances. I'll be using this thread for posting my long term experience with the box - and I'm hoping it will be a pleasant one.

As of now - I dont plan to drive around fully in P2 mode though. P1 will be better suited for bumper to bumper bangalore traffic.

2. Power and Torque Figures on tap?

RD claims 40% improvement off-peak and 30% improvement peak performance. I cannot justify/ verify this claim now - atleast not till the dyno run is done.

3. Kitna Deti hai?

You just had to ask, right? Wrong section though. I'll defenitly be doing a mileage test for P1 and E modes.

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Old 31st March 2013, 02:09   #8
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

P1

Best thing about this mode - you can get out of the turbo lag zone faster than on a stock car. Mind you - the lag is still there - but you can feel a difference in the way the rpm needle climbs to the 2k turbo zone. Stock car had usable power above 1600 rpm and it gets even better with P1. These two factors make driving in traffic a better experience than stock. RD claims a 15% gain in performance in this mode, along with 25% increase in mileage. While I cannot vouch for the performance yet - till I get the dyno run - mileage figures as per MID has not dropped in city conditions.

Infact - I was pleasantly surprised to see MID show figures of 18kmpl+ over 100+ kms of sane driving through bangalore ORR. I'll be getting mileage comparisons done once the initial excitement dies down.

Another point to note-

When i read all the reviews mentioning that power delivery is linear in P1 - I got an impression that P1 mode will not have that turbo kick which makes diesel cars fun. Thankfully - thats not the case. The old kick of the turbo at 2k rpm is still there, but only difference is more usuable power lower down combined with a faster gain in engine rpm which gives the impression of it being more linear. There is still fun to be had though, without losing much on the mileage front.

Speaking of power and mileage - a point to note about ADSL (Adaptive Self Learning) technology thats used in the RD box. Some say it gives the box an advantage over competition - no comments on that. I do feel the adaptive mapping of parameters work in reality though! For example - I was not feeling well for past couple of days, and I was taking it real easy on the throttle (MID average FE of around 20 kmpl proves it) and I could feel the engine become a bit lazier than earlier. With some proper driving (That saw the average FE figures come crashing down from 20kmpl to 17.5 kmpl) - the box is back to form - better than ever! I have felt this difference only in P1 mode as of now - and I guess thats what they have in mind too. Afterall - who would look for mileage in P2, and power in E!

Again - Its not as revv-friendly as P2 mode, but still lot better than stock. Engine does not feel lazy. NVH levels are almost similar to stock, but again - I do feel a slight increase in the noise levels. I'm not sure at this point if its just my apprehensions - but I do feel the radiator fan to be working a bit extra to keep the engine temperatures under control. This fan noise might be the reason why the NVH feels a bit on the higher side than stock.

The bad news?

I'd like P1 to have a bit more performance. Right now if i am to rate stock as 1 and P2 as 10 - I'd say P1 is somwhere around the 30% mark, in terms of performance. I'd like it to be around 50%. Lets say what the dyno figures reveal. I've read RD guys are open to suggestions, lets see.

FAQ

1. How does it differ from single channel box, for 1.3 VGT?

I'm sorry, but I'm not the right person to answer. amit_mechengg/ scofield would be able to, i guess. For Cruze, check with mobike008.

2. Does it offer driveability similar to remaps?

Again - I can only point you to the right people - this case I believe would be kryptonite/motomaverick.

3. RPM @ which turbo starts spooling?

As I mentioned earlier - I dont see a big difference in the way it spools. Main difference though- is the way rpm rises up till turbo zone, and a linear useable power above 1600rpm before the turbo kicks in properly at 2k rpm. Makes driveability better compared with stock 90HP.

Better analysis can he had after the dyno run.

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Old 31st March 2013, 05:10   #9
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

E

You are waiting for something.
Its there, but no - its not really there.

Thats E mode IMO.

It is lazy like stock till 1600rpm, starts slightly picking up some momentum above it. You get a feeling - its not so bad afterall, its almost like stock. And then - you are ready for the turbo to kick in at 2k rpm - it continues to slowly climb to higher rpms leaving you with a slightly confused expression on your face.

But who cares right? It answers the most important question of all - Kitna Deti hai? RD claims a 40% improvement in mileage. I'll not be able to verify it soon. Probably next month end I'll be testing it during my Bangalore - Chennai drive. Also - planning to do an average of couple of tankfuls to get a correct picture, but thats all long term.
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Old 31st March 2013, 05:52   #10
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Initial impressions about RD and few things we discussed with them:

1. You can drive down to RD facility, talk to Chetan/ Pavan (I didn't meet Karthik who is also a common name on the forum - get the box installed etc. But for billing - you'll need to visit one of their retailers/ distributors.

2. They dont mention absolute power or torque ratings on the product because the real world gains differs from one car to the other. Hence they prefer to talk in terms of approximate percentage gains.

3. Different people are responsilbe for maintaining their team-bhp account - for example a technical person would answer a technical question posted.

4. DO NOT SEND A PM and wait for a response like I did. Its against forum policies for them to respond to PMs, and they decently followed it. However - I have since then requested them atleast twice to update the same in their signature. Because for people like me who send PMs and wait for a response, it feels like a don't care attitude when you dont get a reply.

5. They are aware their site is a bit outdated and are planning to move to a better platform soon. Hence new items like the dual channel box have not been updated there.

6. They are proud to be a technology company. I also felt they take like to distance themselves from the sales and marketing side of it.

7. M.R.P for the dual channel box is 26000/-. Single channel box is still available for 19000/-

8. AFAIK - Dual channel box is available for FIAT 1.3 VGT and Hyundai 1.4 CRDi engines now. Box for Cruze should also be available in the market shortly. All other cars with electronic turbo boost control should be covered soon, in stages.

Some more reading material -

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/modifi...uning-box.html (Racedynamics: DieselTronic Tuning Box)

http://www.quartermile.in/2012/tuning-box-comparison/

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...x-page1-7.html

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...x-page1-9.html

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-d...mapped-15.html

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/modifi...a-1-3-mjd.html (Tested the Dieseltronic Dual Channel Box on my Linea 1.3 MJD)

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Old 31st March 2013, 06:37   #11
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Epilogue:

Scene: Home. Few days later.

CrAzY WiFe: You told you'll be getting some variable pay along with salary this time?
CrAzY dRiVeR: (Sure that some new jewellery/ household purchase plan is going to be revealed soon). Ya. But not significant. What happened?

CrAzY WiFe: You need to pay the credit card. You know - for the box? Dont forget.




Oh well - atleast - the box is worth the money spent.

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Old 31st March 2013, 10:17   #12
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Default Re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics Dieseltronics Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Mods note: Thread moved from Assembly Line to Modifications & Accessories. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 31st March 2013, 10:46   #13
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Default re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics DieselTronic Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Let me be the first to congratulate you on the RD box on the Punto 90BHP.

Your description of feeling is pretty much what we all RD owners go through. Very aptly described the P2 mode : It just keeps pulling, pulling and pulling relentlessly

Out of my daily 52kms drive to work, 36kms are highway type and still i dont slot in the P2 because in the Cruze it's insane and my brakes being in the fag end of its life, i am not taking a risk for a hard-stop

Another BHPian from Hyderabad (Rider60) has remapped (dont know which brand) his Punto 90 and he is going ga-ga over it. Will ask him to drop into this thread

Enjoy the box and drive safe



Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
Chetan: This is your stock mode. I'm putting it in P2 now. Go for it. I'm really scared of this mode, I didn't allow him (Our friendly mod- mobike008. His initial impressions on the dual channel box for his Cruze here.) to test it in his Cruze.

CrAzY dRiVeR: I'm disappointed I got my judgement wrong in the morning. Man, P1 is fun, while P2 just keeps pulling and pulling and pulling.

I just couldn't wipe that grin off my face!
Oh yeah ! Me, Chetan and Anirudh did a crazy TD on the necklace road in Hyderabad and entire 15kms TD, even though long open winding stretch, I wasn't allowed to put in P2 because P1 in dual channel felt like the P2 of Single channel. That's what I told Chetan too ( since I have the experience of owning the previous version of the box as well)

Last edited by mobike008 : 31st March 2013 at 10:47.
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Old 31st March 2013, 11:25   #14
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Default re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics DieselTronic Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Congrats!

Can you please post some dyno figures across the various modes? That would really help quantify the changes you have described and be more objective as well.
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Old 31st March 2013, 11:25   #15
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Default re: Review & Ownership: RaceDynamics DieselTronic Dual Channel - Punto 90HP

Fantastic thread, very captivating narration and reading most of the posts had me in splits, especially the unexpected twists to the story with your better half's roles.

Firstly, thanks for inviting me along for the RaceDynamics box purchase session and a visit to their facility. I was lucky to be at the 3M centre that weekend and could only be too happy to join you guys for this. I 'politely declined' the keys that day because I didn't want to grab the keys as soon as you got it, since you yourself hadn't driven it yet *lol*. Yesterday's test drive sessions were very impressive though, I had a better chance to try out all the 3 modes (leaving out S) on some good quality roads.

Some views from a fellow Punto 90HP owner :

Turbo lag :
Initially I was expecting a drastic change in terms of turbo lag improvement with the box. The change isn't too drastic, but there is a hint of eagerness to dart ahead now, especially in P1. The lag improvement is probably felt the most in the P1 mode, which feels very linear and good to use for regular driving, say in the city traffic. The P2 mode does not show drastic lag improvement, but it does feel very similar to the turbo pull you would get in a turbo petrol car. The E mode? It feels like it is in lag throughout the rev range. But then, it isn't fair to compare E with P1/P2, since it is meant to do the opposite anyway.


P1 mode : This is probably the most balanced mode - said to offer better economy as well as better driveability. I can only comment on the latter, obviously (fuel bills for testing were paid by CD, hehe). The stock Punto 90 has a lag till around 1500-1600 rpm after which it starts to spool up and offers a noticeable boost in acceleration only beyond 1800-1900 rpm.

- The P1 mode smoothens out these boundaries. The car feels very linear, almost like a naturally aspirated petrol in this rev range. The turbo surge / lag effect is minimized, and there is no split personality feel when driving through that rpm range

- Post-2000rpm, the pull is very similar to the stock map. I couldn't find any noticeable difference in pulling.

- I believe the torque delivery is also smoother. Jerks are minimized when clutching / de-clutching quickly. This is especially useful in city traffic where one needs to keep changing gears frequently. No more glares from the co-driver and passengers henceforth.


P2 mode : This was, I'm guessing, the mode which CrazyDriver bought this box for. He was really happy with the difference it has made in the power stakes department, and that's what matters. In the short test drive that I did of the P2 mode, I was really impressed with the difference it has made in the mid-range and high-end acceleration.

- Over the stock 90HP, it is a huge leap ahead in noticeable feel of the power.

- There is no significant improvement in the turbo lag in P2. Lag still exists until 1500-1600 rpm. What is drastically different : the pushed-to-the-seats feeling which used to start subtly post 2400-2500 rpm in the stock 90HP, is now multiplied by 1.5X and starts around 200-300 rpm earlier.

- The pull in P2 mode is very similar to the feel you would get in a turbo petrol. Once you are in the turbo zone, it keeps pulling and pulling and pulling forever. The pleasantly surprising thing is - what makes you upshift is not the saturation of pulling (the usual case in a diesel), but the noise of the diesel engine which starts its clatter-howling after 3500 rpm and upwards.

- No prizes for guessing - this is the most enjoyable mode for spirited driving. The acceleration and driveability is very similar to a turbo-petrol, with a fantastic 'pleasure zone' between 2000 and 4000 rpm, which was previously only between 2500 and 3500 in the stock map.


E Mode : I didn't test it extensively since CD probably got bored and shifted the mode to P2 very quickly when it wasn't moving *lol*. Some observations from my short stint with this mode :

- Low end lugging is very similar to the stock Punto 90HP / Punto 75HP. No noticeable sluggishness there.

- Post the turbo-spool zone, like CD mentioned, it is like waiting for the boost to hit, and you keep on waiting and waiting with the power delivery still very subdued through the rev range.

- The mid-range throttle response felt like the Punto was fitted with a Beat diesel's 3-cylinder MultiJet, or like the MultiJet had 1 cylinder malfunctioning. There was simply no pull. It was very sedated. Parents will like this mode I think.

- Where it will shine is in bumper to bumper traffic situations or when cruising at constant speeds on highways. Instead of burning precious fuel in P2, E mode can improve the 'kitna deti hai' aspect of the car when you know you cannot / don't want to use P2 / P1.


In other news, yesterday evening I met BHPian SagarPadaki and his dual channel box'ed i20. He was saying that he got some of the maps customized for his requirements, with Karthik of RD personally helping him out. In case you feel any particular areas need to be better tuned, I suggest you contact RD and re-map the maps. Sagar was joking that he wanted to remove the E mode and add a 'P3' mode in place of that *grins*.

In a nutshell, after driving the car and seeing the difference it has made to the Punto 90HP, I am very tempted to add this onto my 90HP too in the near future. Cheers, and wish you many happy miles with the box!

The high point of this box and the flexibility of the modes offered - Switch to E mode in B2B traffic, you can taunt the Beat Diesel / Nano driver next to you "Kitna Deti Hai?". Enter an expressway minutes later, switch to P2 mode and ask that Laura owner alongside you in the toll booth -"Got BHP?".

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 31st March 2013 at 13:11. Reason: corrected
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