European Union - French car meets German performance chip.
29th Sep 2009 7:00 am
The Renault Logan – sensible, practical and a lot like vanilla ice cream. It’s a good car, but it’s not the car that’ll make the petrol (in this case, diesel) in your veins flow faster. You see, the 1.5Dci diesel in the Logan makes just 65bhp. Elsewhere on earth, the Renault Laguna 1.5 dCi Dynamique Sport Tourer makes 110bhp from the same engine.
Here’s a fact. A sprinkling of chocolate chips will improve your vanilla ice cream. Here’s another fact. The Renault Logan – sensible, practical and a lot like vanilla ice cream. It’s a good car, but it’s not the car that’ll make the petrol (in this case, diesel) in your veins flow faster. You see, the 1.5Dci diesel in the Logan makes just 65bhp. Elsewhere on earth, the Renault Laguna 1.5 dCi Dynamique Sport Tourer makes 110bhp from the same engine. The Indian engine gets this low power output because the Logan is tuned for fuel efficiency and acceptable power.
If ‘acceptable’ just doesn’t do it for you, DTE, a German diesel engine tuning firm, makes a chip to make it more than acceptable. It bumps up the Logan 1.5 diesel motor’s flaccid 65bhp to a slightly more exciting 81bhp. Torque goes up too, from 16.3kgm to a much beefier 19.3kgm. Here’s how it works.
The DTE tuning box intercepts the signal between the ECU and the common-rail injection system and allows it to inject the perfect amount of fuel into the cylinders, thus producing more torque and power. Four to eight injection maps are placed in the memory for the first time that then go into action according to your required driving performance. The system also has the ability to adapt to the individual characteristics of your vehicle. Over a short running-in period, the memory function detects the individual data for the differing fuel-injection cycles. The information gathered is used to optimise fuel injection even further, which means the chip adjusts its working to suit your style of driving.
It works much better than we expected. The DTE Logan shaved an impressive 1.8 seconds off the car’s 0-100kph time. It’s most noticeable in the Logan’s midrange, which you can see from the in-gear acceleration times — just look at the 40-100kph time! It’s where the regular Logan’s decent grunt transforms into a real nudge in the small of your back. In traffic, this extra zest shows up when you want to shoot into gaps or make it past that red light. And this extra performance helps when the car is fully loaded too, which is a boon, because this car has a real ability to seat five large adults.
It’s still not as quick as a diesel Maruti Dzire though, but it’s a good upgrade if you already have a Logan. So, it’s added performance with a sprinkling of practicality too and just as attractive as a scoop of vanilla with a sprinkling of chocolate chips.
| In-gear acceleration
|20-80kph (3rd gear)
|40-100kph (4th gear)