Drive-By-Wire Enhancer N Drive-by-wire technology has enabled car manufacturers to calibrate vehicle throttle response and power delivery based the vehicle's weight, its drivetrain, and its intended use. The Volkswagen/Audi 2.0T FSI engine is used in variety of vehicle types-from a small hatchback to a large four-door sedan with a weight difference of over 500 pounds. Weight is not the only factor, though. If the vehicle is two- or four-wheel drive, the transmission type (i.e., traditional automatic, traditional manual, CVT, or DSG) and even the tires come into play when the manufacturer calibrates how the throttle pedal responds based on driver input. The wide range built into the factory system is what the Sprint Booster module taps into to enhance throttle response and eliminate throttle delays.
If we look at the '07 Volkswagen GTI 2.0T FSI equipped with a DSG transmission, it's obvious that when software engineers calibrated the throttle map they had several things to consider. The GTI is classified as a performance car, with an output of 200 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque on 91 octane. It is front-wheel-drive, weighs 3,100 pounds, and can be equipped with all-season tires. Though the GTI is a performance car, VW wants to optimize gas mileage to have better EPA efficiency numbers on the window sticker. So here's how they calibrate the throttle map. Since it's FWD potentially running with all-season tires, engineers program a slight initial delay in throttle response to prevent a loss of traction. The problem is they are unable to program the delay based on the driving situation, so it's always there, whether you need it or not. Because of the vehicle's performance class, they do increase the throttle response after the delay, but because of the vehicle's weight and fear of customer complaints, it's set on the extreme minimal end of the spectrum.
The Sprint Booster module is designed to eliminate the initial throttle delay and increase throttle response. It works by intercepting OEM signals from the fuel pedal and recalibrating them before they reach the engine control unit. We tried it on an otherwise stock '07 GTI with the DSG, and the unit performed as advertised with no adverse effects on how the vehicle shifted. The throttle did not become jerky or erratic, but remained smooth and precise.
The Sprint Booster is 100-percent reversible and can be easily removed in about 10 minutes, leaving zero trace of it ever haven been there. -Anthony Gelinas
Johnston Research & Performance
Wheel of the Month
The Black di Forza is the latest addition to Savini's current three-piece XLT series. The XLT series offers what Savini calls Xtreme Lip Technology, which offers an additional two inches to the outer rim compared to conventional three-piece wheels. A range of custom finishes is available, including Diamond Chrome, brushed, carbon, and custom colors. Available sizes include19-, 20-, 22-, and 24-inch diameters. Contact for pricing.
Savini Forged Wheels
AutoEnginuity, a global engineering company specializing in vehicle diagnostics, has announced the release of its ScanTool 8.0 for the Windows platform. Key features include Windows 7 support, as well as an interface for customers who choose to develop their own software. Highlights include enhanced VW and Audi support for 2009 coverage, enhanced BMW and MINI support with 2009 coverage along with SMG IV and HUD support, and 2009 coverage for Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, and Porsche.
Vogtland GmbH has finalized its lowering springs for the new (type W212) Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Designed to take both the sedan and the hot new coupe 35mm closer to the ground, thereby lowering the center of gravity and reducing chassis roll, Vogtland springs are formed from chrome-silicon alloy to guarantee stability and necessary flexibility. Additionally, all springs are made in Germany, come with a two-year warranty, and are shipped with a TÜV component certificate, indicating they are certified to stringent German quality specifications.
Vogtland North America
AWE Tuning's Cold Cone Box (CCB) Intake for the MkV 2.0T features a fully enclosed carbon-fiber airbox and larger-than-stock diameter tubing after the MAF. The company is proud enough of this unit to claim it's the most complete and best-engineered intake solution available, with independent testing indicating an 8-hp max gain at the crank and healthy increases throughout the rpm range. Other highlights include a washable cone filter, improved throttle response, and both FSI and TSI compatibility (TSI kit pictured). $379.95
For the stealth-look enthusiast, PowerSlot will now offer its Power Alloy enhanced brake rotors with a protective e-coating over all unswept surfaces in an eye-catching black finish. The result combats unsightly corrosion while providing a pad/rotor interface ready for immediate use without any additional attention needed for pad bedding. The rotors themselves utilize a special molybdenum formula designed to deliver improved stopping power in severe-duty situations, as well as superior resistance to thermal stress (cracking).