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Old 13th March 2023, 16:02   #1
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Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.


Hello Team-BHPians,

I’m writing this post to share with you my horrendous experience of tuning my Tata Harrier to Stage 1+.

I wanted to get my car tuned for a long time so contacted the local tuner in Kolkata namely “RC TUNES”.

After lots of postponing due to my schedule issues and sometimes his, finally on the 10th of February 2023, I visited his tuning place(basically his house)

He connected his Launch OBD II tool to check the cars fault codes, upon diagnosis he found 22 error codes of which most were temporary or memorised relating to certain bulbs and indicators. However, few involved the ECU, ABS, TERRAIN SYSTEM, and PEPS.

He told me the tuning was not possible as the car had too many errors, if he proceeded the car could have issues. That I needed to clear it off from the Tata service centre before he could proceed.
I straight up headed to the nearest Tata centre from the location on the same day, upon diagnosis done by Tata, they found merely 8 codes and cleared them all and told me my problem should be sorted.

Cut to 1st March 2023( I was out of the city and returned on 1st) I scheduled the tuning with RC TUNERS and reached his place by approx 3.30 pm.

This is where things take a turn.

Tuner connected the OBD II diagnosis tool and said the same errors were still showing in his device. He even accused me of lying that I never visited the service centre in the first place, I mean what even?!?!.

He then spoke to his tuning partner and decided to go ahead with the tuning.He called in his mechanic, unplugged the ECU and wired it up to his Laptop through a flash tool. This time around he did not tell me that the car can face catastrophic failures and said let’s do it we will see whatever happens in a softer voice.

I waited for 4 hours at his place before leaving for home with my driver in another car. He told me the car should be tuned by 9 pm as it needed to be decrypted by Venom as I was opting for the Venom Tune, and said he would deliver it to me, at 11 pm he finally brought the car.

When he came in I had the shock of my life! The car would start but it would not accelerate past 25kmph no matter what I did. Sport, and Eco modes didn’t work, Engine Rpm would not go past 1600rpm under any circumstance. He tried to manually clear off the codes with his tool but the problem did not get solved.

He told me my car had problems and it was not the fault of his tune. He told to take it to the service centre and let Tata guys fix the wiring harness and fuse( as per his diagnosis this was the issue). He even told me the immobiliser has issues per the codes received on his tool.

I was devastated, if the car could have problems so severe he should have clearly told me before removing the ECU, that simply informing me a month before tuning is not sufficient or not responsible enough. He acted like it was not his fault and was not ready for taking any responsibility. I told him that he should have firmly told me about the risks, but he simply said I was too eager for the tune so he went ahead with it. I, on the other hand, was bemused, wanting to get the problem fixed asap I went to the service centre on 3rd March 2023.

Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.-img_4555.jpg

Now just imagine, the service centre being 25kms far from home and the Harrier not going past 25kmph!!!, it was time-consuming as well as not safe to drive on the State Highway at that speed, compromising my safety I took the car to the service centre. I had to take my other car as a backup, the service centre guys then diagnosed every single possible part in the Harrier that could be causing this issue.

They opened up the engine bay to quite an extent to find the problem, I felt very puzzled and sad that just because of the tune my beloved car had to be opened up and not retain its originality( if you know what I mean &#128554.

After almost a week of diagnosing the fuel line, fuel tank pipes, sensors, and gearbox grounding and calling in 2 senior Tata Engineers, they stumbled upon the ECU.
They found out that my ECU was smoked and had an open circuit.

Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.-img_4552.jpg

They ordered a replacement ECU and fixed the issue under warranty.

The tuner in this case took zero responsibility for the damages he did to my car whenever I called him and expressed my concern over the problem he did and that my warranty could suffer because of the same he gave a simple “Ok” in a tone that felt that he couldn’t care less and instead blamed my car that the problem was being occurred due to a fault wiring harness can you see the audacity!

Whenever I tried to take up this matter with him he says it was my car's fault and we have codes to prove it. Alright someone explain to me one thing, if the car had so many issues why did it run niggle free before he flashed on the tune?.why was it completely normal before touched the ECU software?.

Before Tata diagnosed the problem I addressed my query on several pages on the internet to get an answer as to why it happened, a renowned tuner told me that he is adamant that it was a bad tune done on the ECU.

Tata had agreed to replace the ECU under warranty, finally, a headache off my head and Harrier is back to being normal, but the trauma, worry and the amount of patience I kept cannot be compensated.

I was lucky enough to get my ECU replaced by Tata but not every brand would solve this issue created by 3rd party tuners.

This post simply shared my experience that beware of tuners who can mess up your car and then would take zero responsibility for the mess they have created.

As tuning ECUs is rising in India, it is very important for a potential customer to know and beware of the tuners.

In my case it wasn’t like I hadn’t researched enough about the tuner or tuning as a whole, the tuner I went to has tuned several cars too, I have been following him on Instagram for 1.5 years but never knew he could be so irresponsible. It’s because of his attitude towards his work that has led me to type this lengthy post.

Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.-img_4690.jpg

These complete two weeks have been absolute agony for me as living with the feeling that my car has become useless due to sick tuners is really tough.


I hope you guys can extract some wisdom from my mistakes.

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Old 14th March 2023, 09:38   #2
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

Thanks for sharing, bil.007! Moving your post out to a new thread so as to warn others. A new thread means 100X the views & 100X the visibility in search engines, including Google. Will add to homepage later this week .

@ BHPians, if you should spot any important / significant post in an existing thread that deserves its own new thread, please report the post and we'll move it out for greater visibility.

Thank you!
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Old 14th March 2023, 09:48   #3
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

Your ECU was fried by a tuner and TAMO changed it under warranty - wow , the title of this thread should ideally be " Great warranty coverage by TATA "

Also - with you having admitted on a public forum , that you messed up the ECU ( you or tuner doesn't matter as its your car ) TATA can very well bill you for the ECU , since this is a clear violation of warranty terms

Don't want to comment on the tuner / tuning fiasco - Next time play it safe and get a tuning box .
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Old 14th March 2023, 10:09   #4
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

It sounds like there are many fly by night tuners now in the market since it is fast money.
There are established tuners and those are the guys you need to do business with. I understand it is easy to think these guys do a good job by following them on Insta and that is what exactly Insta is for more or less now. However, when the tuning involves the ECU which is one of the most expensive components of the car and plus the price for the tune, it is better to do a ton of research before on who to choose.
The red flag in your case was when he said there are error codes which he said will cause issues which I think means, he is not sure on the next steps after he saw the error codes and he basically bricked your ECU at the end of the day. A good tuner will know and tell you if the error codes need to be fixed after deciphering them or if they are not critical ones, clear them and continue.

Last edited by tharian : 14th March 2023 at 10:11.
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Old 14th March 2023, 10:19   #5
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

For all the flak TML service gets, pleasantly surprised to read this.

Did the service center ask you about how the ECU went bad? Or did you tell them the whole sequence of events?

If they changed the ECU under warranty knowing it wasn’t a manufacturing defect, just to support a frustrated customer, kudos to them!

Please do mention the service center name. If the tuner needs brickbats, it’s only fair the service center also get some credit for supporting you.
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Old 14th March 2023, 11:15   #6
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

The launch diagnostic tool only reads the error codes on TATA cars, try erasing them and the launch application crashes. So it could be a clear case of the tuner unable to fix the error codes than anything else. Launch has had this problem for a long time now and unresolved as far as I am aware of.

Dont bother with tuning it up now considering that the information is available on the public domain now and your intent of warning off potential car owners going to this tuner. Consider the warranty replacement as a blessing in disguise and move on.
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Old 14th March 2023, 12:00   #7
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

You are extremely lucky that Tata considered your case under warranty and fixed it. I shudder to imagine how much you would have had to cough up if they hadn't honoured warranty.

Venom performance in itself isn't what I would call a shady firm to be honest though they are very new. It's run by a fairly professional and well known gentleman in the tuning industry and I know folks who are personally running their tunes. The issue arises when someone who has absolutely no experience flashing tunes tries to do so.

Firstly, an OBD flash is much much simpler and less demanding physically than a benchflash (what your tuner did). However, the former isn't available for all engines which might be the reason why your tuner resorted to a bench flash. A bench flash involves opening the ECM, hooking up jumper wires to the PCB and flashing the tune. Sort of an open heart surgery.

If one wire is connected the wrong way, shorts with another wire or establishes metal to metal contact anywhere, you are in for a lot of trouble. An OBD flash will lead to a bricked ECM in the worst case, a bench flash can lead to a burnt one.

The key takeaway from this episode is to not only check the integrity of the firm that supplies the tune but to also check how proficient the guy flashing the tune is. An ECM is not cheap by any means (one of the most expensive modules on a modern day car) and replacing it isn't a straight plug and play job (the replacement ECM needs to be reprogrammed post install).
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Old 14th March 2023, 12:11   #8
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

You're the luckiest Tata customer I ever know! I don't think you realise it completely. What Tata did is the equivalent of presidential pardon for the grave crime of changing factory settings, abhorred in all warranty terms.

Feel free to name and shame this specific tuner - he used you as a guinea pig and wouldn't mind doing it to other customers.
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Old 14th March 2023, 12:20   #9
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

Originally Posted by Dry Ice View Post
Did the service center ask you about how the ECU went bad? Or did you tell them the whole sequence of events?
I doubt he told them anything, because the last time he posted about the issue on TBHP he didn't tell us either that he'd gotten the car tuned.

Originally Posted by bil.007 View Post
Hello Team-Bhpians,

I’m in need of some suggestions.

Actually my Harrier XZA+ 2022 suddenly on Friday morning was not going past 1600 rpm. No matter what, even if the car is in neutral. All I did was reconnect the battery the previous night after which I faced the problem.Initially when I faced the problem the Check Engine Light popped for a few seconds and went off and hasn’t popped back up ever since while car is running.

When I put it in Drive the car crawls and no matter how deep I push the accelerator pedal there is no acceleration past 20-25kmph and rpm doesn’t push above 1600rpm.

There are no other signs of any issue…except for this when I drive.

Have given the car to Tata Service center and they are scratching their heads unable to diagnose the issue.Even they’re OBD tool showed only 4 DTC issues that too memorised.They checked the fuel lining but couldn’t find issues with it, they did check the brake switch but that was also fine. However upon some research I have come to know that the fault may be with the Brake Switch Relay as well which I don’t think they have checked.I have informed them the same.

This problem is completely new for the Service Center.

Any suggestions are appreciated.

Hoping to get my car fixed asap.

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Old 14th March 2023, 12:32   #10
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

I am assuming here that somehow Tata Service Center did not get into the root cause of the issue which is "TUNING". Had they gotten into it, I am sure they would have saved TATA some money. This was an unfair deal for TATA. Weirdly, the only entity that suffered a major financial hit was TATA out of the 3 parties involved & TATA was not even there when ECU was smoked by a third party in gross violation of Warranty Terms & Conditions.

Last edited by Engine_Roars : 14th March 2023 at 12:35.
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Old 14th March 2023, 13:04   #11
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

You willingly paid someone to modify/mess up your ECU and then got it replaced under warranty?

Isn't this illegal / morally incorrect? And now you are admitting your act of fraud on the internet?

I am happy for you that you car is fixed, but ideally one should take responsibilities for their actions.
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Old 14th March 2023, 13:41   #12
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

All I will say is respect to Tata in this case. While tuner is in the wrong, you could have also thrown caution to the air, when he told you again that the error codes are still showing up, should have just aborted the plan then and there.

As other pointed you got very lucky in this case!
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Old 14th March 2023, 13:45   #13
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

This is a very confusing case, maybe the ECU was indeed faulty and Tata knows about this? Tuner may have messed up playing with an already faulty ECU.

Eitherways it is remarkable that Tata honoured the warranty! Now please enjoy the vehicle as it is and next time if you decide to go in for tune (ever), please ensure at Tata dealer itself there are no hidden trouble codes in that ECU log.
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Old 14th March 2023, 14:42   #14
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

Hello everyone!
I am Rohan here from RC TUNES. Regarding the issue with the Tata Harrier, i would like to bring certain things to light for clarification.

1. He had come to visit us for tuning on the 10th of Feb 2023. We scanned the car using our scanner and found 22 errors all of which were explained to the customer. Imagine soo many electrical faults in 6500kms car and we are definitely not ok with it. The customer told us that Tata had done some work to code a third new key. Due to this there were immobilizer fault codes and several others showing on our scanner. Since the information given to us was not clear, we refused to tune the car and requested the customer to have this rectified by Tata and have the codes removed and then visit us.

2. After a few days we were informed by the customer that Tata had inspected the car and they had given the all clear stating that only 8 codes codes had been cleared and the rest remained. The customer visited us on 1st March and after scanning the car, we found those exact same codes again. We again informed the customer of the same and mentioned the risks involved again. He still agreed to go ahead with the tune. Upon his knowledge and discretion we went ahead.

3. Post tune we scanned the car and the same error codes were still there. We tried clearing and were still left with the ones which were previously stated to be of concern. Additional to that there was a battery disconnection error. The car was in limp mode. We took our time to cross check everything to make sure there was no lapse from our end. The tune supplier, Venom Performance master dealer, cross verified everything if anything to do with tune or checksum issue as its a basic stage 1 tune with egr off. As they have done many in past and still we found nothing. The customer had requested we drop the car at his place overnight and so we did. We requested him to be a little patient and visit Tata and have those fault codes rectified. We have tried to guide him through the duration his car was at Tata. We explained that the ECU power replay might have an issue and to replace that. That is still pending. If the ecu was fried how would the car start? How would Tata so readily replace the ECU that too under warranty within a week time ? We have been in touch with customer and offered support to whatever extent is possible by us. We called him up to come and allow us to check if faults still exists after putting stock tune and now we got no reply. Post which he has started this thread. He is not answering our calls either.

We never left our customers in such situations. It's the customers who doesn't respect the work we do. We try our level best to sort things even if it's not related to us and still stand by it! We hope to resolve this super soon. We are attaching the screenshots of the scans on the day of tuning separately for everyone to get a clear image. The customer agreeing to the disclaimers given to him by us are attached below.
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Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.-harrier-1st-visit-pre-tune.jpg  

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Old 14th March 2023, 16:38   #15
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re: Terrible experience tuning my Tata Harrier.

Originally Posted by Rohanf12 View Post
Post tune we scanned the car and the same error codes were still there. We tried clearing and were still left with the ones which were previously stated to be of concern. Additional to that there was a battery disconnection error. The car was in limp mode.
Can you pin point which codes were stated to be of concern? Did the car have any check engine light, or any other failure symptoms when it was delivered to you? If not, all these codes are just historical - they occurred in the past (maybe during battery installation / key programming) and do not indicate any current fault with the vehicle.

Originally Posted by Rohanf12 View Post
If the ecu was fried how would the car start? How would Tata so readily replace the ECU that too under warranty within a week time ?
Since you did a bench flash, which involves taking the ECU out, and wiring it up manually, I'm surprised that you are completely disregarding the possibility of something going wrong during the flashing/wiring process.

Of course if you wire it up incorrectly, or if there's a short between two of the ECU pins, or to power or Ground, some parts of the ECU can get fried. Like for instance if the input to the ECU that reads from the MAF sensor gets fried, the engine will still start, but it will only run in limp mode.

Unless you can prove that the old ECU is still fine by plugging it into another car, the simplest explanation seems to be that something did indeed go wrong during the bench flashing procedure.

Tata must have tried flashing the ECU before replacing it. Why wouldn't they replace the ECU given that the vehicle was in warranty and they had no clue about the open heart surgery that was done on the ECU?
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