If you are looking to improve the performance of your motorcycle, then motorcycle tuning software could be the key. Tuning your motorcycle using this software can create a better riding experience, as well as extend the life of your engine. In this article, we discuss what motorcycle tuning software is, what it does, its benefits, and any negatives.
What is motorcycle tuning?
Motorcycle tuning is also known as motorcycle ECU mapping. It’s the process of remapping the parameters of the engine through the ECU. The purpose of the ECU is to control the motorcycle’s engine. It regulates the following elements: torque, air and fuel temperature, turbo pressure, power, and fuel consumption among other things.
Back in the day motorcycles had carburetors which you kick-started to get the engine fired up. With complex fuel injection systems replacing the carburetor, the power delivery system falls under the Electronic Control Unit (ECU). The ECU ensures optimal performance by controlling a set of actuators that electronically control the parameters the engine is operating under.
When tuning the motorcycle, you are essentially cracking the factory restrictions, to upgrade and enhance the bike’s performance. This allows the potential of the bike to be unlocked. Bike manufacturers set the parameters at the factory so they comply with regulatory standards and restrictions; however, these parameters often mean the motorcycle is not running at an optimal level.
What is ECU mapping?
A MAP is a program that controls the engine hardware. It is similar to the drivers that control the different components of a computer’s hardware. The MAP file of an engine typically contains several different MAPs.
How is it different from chipping, you might ask? Chipping is the outdated version of mapping. Instead of replacing the ECU chip, mapping remaps or modifies the chip without replacing it.
How is the ECU re-mapped?
The process involves uploading a custom chip digital tuning file to your ECU. This enables the engine to be remapped to optimal performance. Typically, the ECU is removed from the motorcycle and connected to the programmer, where the remapping software changes the parameters so that the ECU follows the new set of instructions or MAP.
What parameters does ECU modify?
In addition to removing the factory settings and upgrading the ECU parameters, the tuning process typically focuses on the following:
- Removing any issues with the throttle
- Decreasing up and down shift dead times
- Ignition timing changing
- Rev limiters modification
- Fuel calculation optimization
- Speed limiter adjustments
- O2 correction or removal
- Adjustments to torque limiters
- Removing low RPM power restrictions s
- Engine braking and tuning
Benefits of engine remapping
The main benefit is once the remapping has taken place the performance of your engine should improve almost instantly. You’ll also notice a smoother throttle response which helps with faster gear changes.
Most riders see around a 15-20% torque increase and a 10-15% increase in power compared to the original power. Fuel consumption can improve, providing you adapt your riding style to accommodate the increased torque and power. Failing to make this accommodation can often do the reverse and result in worsening fuel consumption.
In addition, the emissions restrictions that affect reusable power are reprogrammed and the engine becomes more effective which increases its lifespan.
Negatives associated with engine mapping
Unfortunately, there are some negatives that come with engine mapping, the most serious of which is that your warranty is voided, and you’re on your own if there are issues with the bike and ECU mapping isn’t always all wine and roses. Sometimes the increased power can result in parts failing or engine damage due to improper parameters. Engine overheating is not uncommon.
For environmentalists, motorbike tuning software is likely to increase emissions. It will also hit you in the pocket with a reduced resale value for the motorcycle.
Examples of tuning software
The following are some examples of the tuning software available:
Woolich Racing Tuned Software
Woolich Racing Tune Software is used for Yamaha, Honda Kawasaki, BMW, Ducati, and Suzuki motorcycles. It performs the following functions:
- Fuel map editing
- Ignition mapping
- Modification of RPM
- Secondary throttle plate map editing
- Woolich racing autotune
- Realtime engine data
- RAM compensation map editing
ECU Studio Motorcycle Tuning Software
ECU Studio is a software suite for motorcycle tuning that comes in three versions; basic, pro and pro+. An exclusive license is needed that allows users to reload any updates and new features. The software enables users to change all the parameters of the bike and add more racing features.
ECU Studio is available for MV Augusta, KTM, Triumph and Husqvarna.
To run the ECM Studio users require Microsoft Windows 10 onward, 4 cores CPU, 2 RAM, and 2 USB outlets.
ECUEditor.com is another product from Woolich Racing and is available to download for free. It is no longer being upgraded; however, users can use the maintenance mode to keep settings up to date.
ECUEditor.com software does the following:
- Tune and adjust fuel maps (IAP and TPS)
- Set RPM limiters and remove top speed limiters
- Autotune with data logging to laptop
- Tune and adjust the ignition maps
- Quickshifter and auto shifting
- Turbo fueling and boost control module
- Nitrous mapping with ramp-up timer and solenoid control
- Disable Stock O2 sensor and closed loop functionality
- Disable the PAIR valve (air bleed into the exhaust)
- Adjustable Traction Control (slew rate RPM limiter)
- Adjustable Launch Control (2-stage RPM limiter)
- Programmable launch and shift light
Euro Flash Diagnostics and Tuning Interface
This is an OBD cable that is adapted to fit European motorbikes. The cable is able to interface with the ECU through the factory port enabling you to perform full factory diagnostics, checking and clearing error codes, CO trim, and real-time engine data.
The Euro Flash Diagnostics and Tuning Interface is compatible with these motorbike tuning systems:
- Tune ECU
- Tuner Pro
You May Also Like: Best 8 Motorcycle Riding Tips and Tricks