Tornado chip
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Thread: Tornado chip

  1. #1
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Tornado chip

    Anyone here who installed a Tornado chip?
    Is it noticable? If yes, just a bit, or quite a bit?


    Bought a chip for the Commodore once, what costed only $35 and made a bit of a difference, but these are just over the top..
    As far as I know NA engines usually don't gain much with chipping.

    So, I'd like to hear about some experiances about this..

    Thanks

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  3. #2
    Premium Member DaGlitch's Avatar
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    Re: Tornado chip

    There is a section on the main site about this:
    https://www.rangerovers.net/rrupgrad...ado/index.html

    To me, 10hp increase really isn't worth it. I have plenty of power for anything I need to do/tow.

  4. #3
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    Quote Originally Posted by DaGlitch View Post
    There is a section on the main site about this:
    https://www.rangerovers.net/rrupgrad...ado/index.html

    To me, 10hp increase really isn't worth it. I have plenty of power for anything I need to do/tow.
    I'm after independant experience, not a sales story from the guy who sells it According to him it's good

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  6. #4
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Maybe take a look at defender50th.co.uk
    1998 Defender 50th 4.0L V8 Auto
    1998 Range Rover 50th 4.6L V8 Auto
    Toylander Series 2A

    Previously
    1980 SIII 2.25 petrol
    1997 200 Tdi CSW

  7. #5
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    I put tornado chips into my GEMS 4.6 last summer, 1997 model year, built 1996. Largely out of curiosity to see what would happen and for a bit of fun. First the Odd, then the Bad, then the Good:

    Odd Things I noticed: Fuel Trims (long term) now reset to -160 not 0 as they originally did. Tune ID was 9625, now 9619 so probably an earlier GEMS used as a basis for the map on the tornados? Not sure, I think some years of ecu do the same thing in their natural state.

    Along with this my O2 sensor readings no longer switch from 5v - 0v but now (usually) switch from 6.25 to 1.25 or thereabouts. I have a few other odd readings (using a Nanocom) which might or might not be due to the chip change. I have not tried the originals back in to see if it 'goes back' to the way it was. I also have not tested the engine ECU other than the wiring and connections (as it was fairly hacked around in the engine bay).

    All of these can be worked around, it passed its last MOT - admittedly I did reset the adaptives and slightly manipulate the bypass valve first, I'd had issues with the stepper motor for a while, but the chips haven't affected the emissions adversely. All fine.

    Bad things: None, nothing adverse has occurred. I would put something here, but there is nothing bar the fact that I had to pry apart bits of the ecu. I'm not even sure I can blame the (irrelevant anyway) odd readings on them, could be the ECU/wiring/anything really. (I think it probably is the combination of chips & ECU board, might be different with different generations of car).

    I have not chipped the Bosch car, so can't compare the difference - that is possibly a bad thing as it's be nice to know. That said it's a different engine size anyway and Bosch/GEMS are hard to compare without setting both up first to 'optimal performance' or whatever. I prefer GEMS anyway tbh, odd one I know but there it is.

    Good Things: The fact is that the accelerator mid-position is much more responsive. That is true of my car, and noticed the first time I drove it chipped (I have since done work and things on it which would blur that but at the time I chipped it, reset the trims just incase and went out in it). It's also noticably quicker in general it's a P38 and so that depends on its mood at the time, it's still not as quick right off the mark as most Bosch cars I've driven (older ECU type in the ZF doesn't entirely help that), and also like most GEMS cars it still feels (to me - again, I'm biased) nicer overall once it's moving. As to the advertising around the engine exploding due to heat/lean mix at cruise etc I can't comment, seems a bit dubious to me that the fuel map could be so far off originally. Especially given the number of 'corrected' tune IDs Land Rover seem to have used. I'm personally inclined to see it as a reason to get flanged liners fitted if that's priority 1, and at the very least maintain the cooling system and oils, coolers etc to an 'above and beyond' level as compared to most vehicles I'd run. I don't know about fuel consumption, it seems roughly the same. Power/torque I have not checked. It does feel better to me, and not entirely due to placebo effect as far as I can tell.

    Short Version: It didn't go from slow to jet propelled, it did improve in its performance slightly, I would probably notice the difference if it went back to how it was. There are certainly no real ill effects from the chips going in in place of the originals. A lot of work has been done on my car and it's running better that it was, although it still has its off days. This blurs the boundaries a bit. It would probably be worth seeing what people who have run chipped/unchipped (similar condition) cars side by side say about it. It did make a noticable and positive difference to the (lack of) mid-pedal accelerator response. I would not have been able to replicate that with the cable adjustors.

  8. #6
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    I sent an email to these Tornado folks asking about a chip for my 4.6 and they never replied so I think I will pass.

  9. #7
    JUNIOR ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    If you car is a Thor/Bosch then there's no need for them to reply, their website clearly shows that they only do a chip for the GEMS. Mark Adams, who is responsible for the Tornado chips, knows more about tuning the RV8 than anyone.
    97 4.0SE
    98 4.0 Police spec
    and a number of others I maintain for the owners.

  10. #8
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam 1979 View Post
    I put tornado chips into my GEMS 4.6 last summer, 1997 model year, built 1996. Largely out of curiosity to see what would happen and for a bit of fun. First the Odd, then the Bad, then the Good:

    Odd Things I noticed: Fuel Trims (long term) now reset to -160 not 0 as they originally did. Tune ID was 9625, now 9619 so probably an earlier GEMS used as a basis for the map on the tornados? Not sure, I think some years of ecu do the same thing in their natural state.


    Along with this my O2 sensor readings no longer switch from 5v - 0v but now (usually) switch from 6.25 to 1.25 or thereabouts. I have a few other odd readings (using a Nanocom) which might or might not be due to the chip change. I have not tried the originals back in to see if it 'goes back' to the way it was. I also have not tested the engine ECU other than the wiring and connections (as it was fairly hacked around in the engine bay).

    All of these can be worked around, it passed its last MOT - admittedly I did reset the adaptives and slightly manipulate the bypass valve first, I'd had issues with the stepper motor for a while, but the chips haven't affected the emissions adversely. All fine.

    Bad things: None, nothing adverse has occurred. I would put something here, but there is nothing bar the fact that I had to pry apart bits of the ecu. I'm not even sure I can blame the (irrelevant anyway) odd readings on them, could be the ECU/wiring/anything really. (I think it probably is the combination of chips & ECU board, might be different with different generations of car).

    I have not chipped the Bosch car, so can't compare the difference - that is possibly a bad thing as it's be nice to know. That said it's a different engine size anyway and Bosch/GEMS are hard to compare without setting both up first to 'optimal performance' or whatever. I prefer GEMS anyway tbh, odd one I know but there it is.

    Good Things: The fact is that the accelerator mid-position is much more responsive. That is true of my car, and noticed the first time I drove it chipped (I have since done work and things on it which would blur that but at the time I chipped it, reset the trims just incase and went out in it). It's also noticably quicker in general it's a P38 and so that depends on its mood at the time, it's still not as quick right off the mark as most Bosch cars I've driven (older ECU type in the ZF doesn't entirely help that), and also like most GEMS cars it still feels (to me - again, I'm biased) nicer overall once it's moving. As to the advertising around the engine exploding due to heat/lean mix at cruise etc I can't comment, seems a bit dubious to me that the fuel map could be so far off originally. Especially given the number of 'corrected' tune IDs Land Rover seem to have used. I'm personally inclined to see it as a reason to get flanged liners fitted if that's priority 1, and at the very least maintain the cooling system and oils, coolers etc to an 'above and beyond' level as compared to most vehicles I'd run. I don't know about fuel consumption, it seems roughly the same. Power/torque I have not checked. It does feel better to me, and not entirely due to placebo effect as far as I can tell.

    Short Version: It didn't go from slow to jet propelled, it did improve in its performance slightly, I would probably notice the difference if it went back to how it was. There are certainly no real ill effects from the chips going in in place of the originals. A lot of work has been done on my car and it's running better that it was, although it still has its off days. This blurs the boundaries a bit. It would probably be worth seeing what people who have run chipped/unchipped (similar condition) cars side by side say about it. It did make a noticable and positive difference to the (lack of) mid-pedal accelerator response. I would not have been able to replicate that with the cable adjustors.
    Thanks for this, main question, is the gain worth the 800AUD?

    Does the P38 have a sluggish throttle response from itself already? I thought mine had because of the Kent 180 cam it has..

  11. #9
    SOPHOMORE ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    if its performance you want why not go and talk to merv grey in Invermay launy , they use to build race motors with the 3.5 l rover motor (350plus hp up to 5l) and did some work with the 4/4.6 motors as well, he rolled his eyes when I mentioned them but he dose still do them from what I have been told from others.
    just another option.
    PS yes they are dead in the mid range throttle response the first 10% ok last 5% ok the rest is non responsive ?

  12. #10
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Tornado chip

    Quote Originally Posted by Reinhoud View Post
    Thanks for this, main question, is the gain worth the 800AUD?

    Does the P38 have a sluggish throttle response from itself already? I thought mine had because of the Kent 180 cam it has..
    Hi, no probs. Couple of things I ought to have added earlier: I think it would make a much larger difference to a car which has been overhauled and is 'tight' in all areas, with new sensors, good connections and everything mechanical refreshed. Mine went in at 96/97k miles and it was in no way in top running condition. I have done a fair bit since, and from the behaviour of the fuel trims and other things I've been looking at things are making more sense 6000 or so miles later. (I've spent a fair while looking into the GEMS system and how it behaves - it's better than it appears in my opinion). It would have been more sensible, and given a better comparison to have waited and gone for an overhaul and also chips. It wasn't expensive and there have been other priorities as can be imagined - from what I've found out, the car spent a few years being looked after then most of its life as a horsebox hauler/dog walking vehicle, lots to do on it.

    The reply (Richard G) on here about the Bosch upgrade is right by the way - I forgot to mention: when I was looking into it there was a remap but it involves sending the ECU off, not a chip or two. I think the 14CUX can be chipped (sort of proto-GEMS in a way). A lot of the GEMS functioning information on other car uses is quite useful, the Morgan and TVR people are quite up on it. It is also very much the case that what Mark Adams doesn't know about GEMS (in particular) and these engines is probably not worth knowing. If any chip is going to be useful, it's his. (Also I'd assume it wouldn't have much of an impact on the non-O2 sensor/open loop variant which exists in some markets, although that could be changed of course).

    I had, and still have, a 4.0 Thor/Bosch as a work 'pool car' and something I discovered early on with my GEMS is that from standstill, the Bosch (despite the slightly smaller cc in this comparison) feels quicker to take off. Probably due to torque placement on the power curve and the more 'intelligent' ECU on the later ZF. The GEMS is, to me, a nicer car to work on and I prefer the driving characteristics of the early 4HP24 plus GEMS management. No idea why, but there it is. (It also really is sensitive to certain factors - one of which is the throttle cable adjustment, for example: It needs to be right (it'll work fine of course if it isn't to a degree, but the overall driving will be 'off'), in theory it oughtn't to make a huge difference as the throttle positions (stored and current) are all read and 'thought about' by the ecu but it does affect the way the car behaves.

    I still find the GEMS as standard to lack mid-range response on the accelerator - its biggest character flaw so far as I've noticed, but what car's perfect? On mine the tornado chips sorted that. Various other factors like a fully working throttle sensor and fixed stepper (with clean airways) and all the other little bits added up to help in hte case of my car, but I'd still say the chips make the GEMS a better drive than without. I'm not sure about the cams vs response, far as I can tell the GEMS is simply not as quick to 'engage and go' as the Bosch. However, to be honest I didn't buy a sports car - it's more an observation than a whinge. Its gearbox has a less complicated computer of course, and that factors in as well. The reply (mad as) sums up the throttle respose, mine was similar - I'd say certainly the 10% to 60% pedal positions (speed, gear, etc depending) were pretty lacking on mine when I got it. Now it does not stand out as a problem, I switch between several vehicles regularly so I don't think it's simply getting used to it.

    I think I paid somewhere in the £600.00 region, personally I think it was worth it. I would say if it came to "I can afford a nanocom or tornado" I'd pick the nanocom first. I have seen archived posts on various forums where people have fitted the chips along with other upgrades and overhauls and then had the car tuned on a rolling road. That is likely the best way to see the most benefit - I would be surprised if there was little before and after difference. I have no idea whether the tune/map on the chips could be adjusted nowadays (or by anyone other than Mark Adams/Tornado Systems) tbh. My personal thoughts from driving a standard P38 in 'unrestored' mechanical condition is that they have improved its overall character and behavior.

    Short Version: Personally (it's subjective of course and this is only my opinion) I think they are worth it. It depends whether you're planning or have done lots of work and upgrades as to how much of a difference is realised, and also 'worth it or not' depends also on what your spending priorities are. It does improve the way GEMS vehicles drive. They do lack accelerator response in the mid range with standard mapping. There are probably many other ways of doing what the tornado does, but for a fairly simple procedure it suited my purposes well, despite that I only really did it out of curiosity - In this case it didn't kill the cat, or at least the satisfaction factor worked. Cheers.

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