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Discussion Starter #1
I know there are some claims that the car can achieve improved power but from what i have seen this seems dubious. However the Cadilac ELR has the same Voltec unit and produces significantly more power. Has anyone considered hooking up the edu of an ELR to their Volt to see if there is any power difference. Or better still pulling the maps and adapting accordingly to work properly on the Volt? I am not a software engineer so i wouldn't be able to do this but i would love to see more power from the system if it is possible without significant risk or range reduction.
 

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I'd like more of the battery power freeing up...and worry about it's lifespan years later! But then again, I'm unlikely to because I rarely keep cars longer than 2 years.
 

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In theory it might be possible to put an ECU from an ELR into a Volt or Ampera, but these days the ECUs are paired with the vehicle systems in the same way you might pair a phone with your car audio - in other words it simply wouldn't function. I'm not saying that's definitely the case here but it could be.
You also have to take into account that if the ELR is running higher power outputs, it will have various other parts upgraded too - particularly the cables and cooling systems. Without having everything upgraded, you are likely to very quickly start a fire.
Somebody has done an ECU hack to get from 0-60 in 5.5s but basically you can guarantee you'll fry your electrics after a while and forget your warranty...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
This is all speculative at this time though. 30% power increase is within the tolerances to not require many if any modifications to the vehicle hardware. I suspect any modifications would be more to the suspension etc. Ideally the maps need to be pulled from the ECU on the ELR and compared to those on the Volt to see if the data can be exchanged correctly.
 

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I come from a background of tinkering with old cars, mainly Triumphs from the 60s and 70s. Back then manufacturers used to have standard fitting parts across ranges which made a lot of sense from a design, production and spares stock viewpoint.

This also worked in favour of the car owners when the cars were a bit older and spares could be taken from other models to repair or upgrade different vehicles. I actually ran a Triumph Dolomite engine in my Herald and had GT6 brakes on my Spitfire. Many home hobbyists did (and still do) much more exotic upgrades and things just kind of fitted and worked.

Whilst things are still about the same from the manufacturers point of view, and GM may well be using the same battery pack and ECU between the Vauxhaul and Cadillac cars, sadly this has gone out of abilities of a home mechanic. Even when these cars are 10, 20 or more years old, I don't think we're going to be at the state where you can chop and change parts like we used to.

And that makes me sad :(
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sounds cool, certainly an ECU worth of data. How many control modules does the car have?
 

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Very interesting article, thanks for the link Derek!
On average a modern car has 30-50 ECUs, some far more, but generally there are two or three for motor control.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Then those are the ones to pull the data from. Cmon there must be somebody tech savvy on here with one of these. The EV tuning scene is just so stagnant as nobody seems to create any demand for this.
 

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Then those are the ones to pull the data from. Cmon there must be somebody tech savvy on here with one of these. The EV tuning scene is just so stagnant as nobody seems to create any demand for this.
I get a feeling we won't be seeing you posting in the 50 mile club any time soon:D
Check out the You Tube vids for the remaped Volt, it looks fast.
 

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As an automotive electronics engineer, I can tell you that is a seriously difficult thing to do. For a start, the ECUs are protected against any kind of hacking and modification of maps - typically it takes people like Superchips up to a year to find a way in and access the maps. Quite often the microprocessors themselves (that contain the mapping information) are locked down so you can't even connect up development equipment to them to reprogramme them. Basically you have to reverse engineer the tools the manufacturer uses to do an ECU update, and even then it's all encrypted.
People are rightly nervous of the EV tuning scene as they're so different to what people are used to looking for when hacking an ECU.

I think generally people have looked into fooling the sensor signals going into the ECU from the motors to get extra power out, but this can result in serious overdriving of the power electronics -> fire.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Actually i love the eco runs but from time to time it would be nice to be able to activate a proper sport mode to unleash some charge in the traffic light dash lol. I raced the GF in her Volt last night vs my Tesla and it was always a forgone conclusion but EV's have so much performance potential it really makes me frustrated when people say they are slow.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
As an automotive electronics engineer, I can tell you that is a seriously difficult thing to do. For a start, the ECUs are protected against any kind of hacking and modification of maps - typically it takes people like Superchips up to a year to find a way in and access the maps. Quite often the microprocessors themselves (that contain the mapping information) are locked down so you can't even connect up development equipment to them to reprogramme them. Basically you have to reverse engineer the tools the manufacturer uses to do an ECU update, and even then it's all encrypted.
People are rightly nervous of the EV tuning scene as they're so different to what people are used to looking for when hacking an ECU.

I think generally people have looked into fooling the sensor signals going into the ECU from the motors to get extra power out, but this can result in serious overdriving of the power electronics -> fire.
Litchfield just bought a Tesla to do development work on. Maybe we should show them there is also demand for the Ampera (if there actually is any)
 

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Actually i love the eco runs but from time to time it would be nice to be able to activate a proper sport mode to unleash some charge in the traffic light dash lol. I raced the GF in her Volt last night vs my Tesla and it was always a forgone conclusion but EV's have so much performance potential it really makes me frustrated when people say they are slow.
I would have thought the Tesla would have been a sure thing against 99.9% of ICE cars, tell you what as a favour I am willing to do a survey for you and report back with my findings. Now if you could drop the car round I will bring it back on Monday:p
 

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If it's the same Litchfield Imports as did work on Scoobies in the early 2000s (and since then too, it seems), then they really know their stuff...
 
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