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Electrical

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VTEC Engine Management

The Honda VTEC like most modern engines, uses a management system. This can be chipped (a replacement chip substituted for the one in the ECU) to change the point at which the VTEC comes in, the power output and the torque curve. Sounds magical? Well, the disadvantage is increased fuel usage and possibly shortened engine life.

The Honda ECU is a bulky unit with a complex loom. It's supposed to be difficult to wire this loom to a Mini but not impossible. The Watson's Specialist Cars kit offers a DTA management system to solve this problem. Jeff can supply his own mapping to be downloaded to the DTA ECU which brings the VTEC in lower and provides a more usable spread of power and torque. For more information about DTA see this link. The system provides 3D engine mapping which means it monitors the throttle position as well. The DTA system is well-proven in racing and seems to offer great value for money compared with other similar systems.

I still reckon the DTA is an expensive option considering that you'll usually get the Honda ECU thrown in with a 2nd hand engine when you buy it. I've no experience of plumbing the Honda loom to the Mini but I intend to try it before I go with the DTA. I had heard though, one bloke who'd attempted it said he'd rather have used the DTA due to the time and effort.

DTA Engine Management ECU