Power Upgrades and Tunes

So, you have an S600 or S65 with the M275 twin turbo V12 and you need more power? 500HP isn’t enough? You are crazy but so are we, and there are plenty of options.

 

Call us to schedule an appointment to go over power options or to order a tune! Our pricing is VERY competitive!

603-969-4484

small_logo_black2

This page is pretty much only applicable to the S55, S600, and S65 W220 cars. There isn’t a whole lot you can do for the naturally aspirated motors found in the S430 and S500. You can do a tune for about 30HP but that is about it. Intakes and exhausts don’t make any appreciable gains.

The most notable modification and the starting point for all future mods is a tune from a reputable company. These tunes will give your S600 a 100-120HP gain. All the tunes from all the companies are pretty much the same and the differences between them will be imperceptible at the track, on the dyno, or in real life driving. Choose a tune from a company that has been around for a while and stands behind their product. We prefer to use Eurocharged tunes and can provide competitive pricing on tunes. We currently stock MyGenius units and tunes from Eurocharged for S600 cars. We certainly can and have installed tunes from Speedriven, OETuning, and others but Eurocharged is our preferred tuning partner.

If you are tuning on your own, tunes can be a little bit of a hassle to install with the handheld tuner but a phone call to the tuning company can certainly speed things up.  The other option is to mail in your ECU to be flashed by the company. I personally prefer the handheld tuner, even at an additional cost. The handheld MyGenius units that most everyone is using allow multiple tune files to be stored on the device and uploaded to the car at will. This allows you to run a performance 93 octane tune for daily driving, dump in a race fuel tune for the track, or swap in a valet tune with no boost when someone else needs to borrow your car. The handheld tuner also allows you to easily receive and upload tunes for any future modifications. Most companies provide support for a year after purchase, so if you later decide to drop in aftermarket intercoolers, intakes, and catless downpipes, a quick email to the tuning company and you can take advantage of the new modifications. At the same time as the engine tune, most people will also opt for a transmission tune. This will give you firmer and more precise shifts. The torque limiter in the transmission is also removed. In stock form, with a tune, you will never hit the torque limiter. You CAN run just the engine tune and a lot of people do. The transmission tune certainly helps to shave some time off the 1/4 mile and generally makes the car a bit more responsive in normal driving. In stock form, the car can tend to be a little sluggish on downshifts when you punch it. These tunes run anywhere from $1000 (ECU/TCU + handheld tuner) all the way to $3000+.

To push things further, you need to do some heat management. These cars have so much equipment stuffed into a tiny space and heat is a massive factor in your performance and longevity of your engine and components. You need to get the heat out. In stock form, Mercedes pulls timing back at about 158*F intake air temp. If you hook up a scan tool or something like Torque for Android devices you will probably notice that you can easily hit this number idling around town. On the highway expect to see mid 140*F. Power gains are to be had if this number can be dropped. Some aftermarket tunes start to pull timing at 130*F so it’s easy to see that something needs to be done. Aftermarket intercoolers and an upgraded charge cooler pump are first on the list. Most people run either an upgraded Bosch pump or even better, a Johnson CM30. The Bosch flows a little more than stock, uses factory wiring, and bolts right up. The Johnson CM30 pump flows significantly more than stock, bolts to the stock location, but uses a different wiring connector. Most people cut the factory Mercedes connector and just splice this one in place (it’s only two wires, it’s very hard to mess up). A better way to do things is to disassemble the Johnson pump and swap the old wiring pigtail over. This leaves a factory connection but takes about 15 more minutes and some soldering. Beyond that, a Meziere pump is the top of the line but it is too big for the stock bracket and requires some work to install correctly. Most people opt for the Johnson pump. An upgraded intercooler setup is very important as well. Speedriven makes a nice setup. One of the biggest improvements that the Speedriven intercoolers make is not only to capacity but to improved airflow. The factory intercoolers have a very restrictive airflow pattern with some serious obstructions that definitely choke down flow. The Speedriven intercoolers are a huge improvement. The next step is to install a trunk mounted coolant reservoir. This allows for more coolant capacity so that you can do harder, longer pulls while still controlling your IATs. After this, something like a Killer Chiller is the way to go. This setup uses your factory air conditioning system to chill the coolant in your reservoir to provide the ultimate in cold air charges. Using a Killer Chiller setup you can even see IATs that are below ambient temperature. Crazy.

Now that we have the heat under control, it’s time to free up some breathing. From here we head to the exhaust. Removing the cats and adding intakes is the absolute next best step to freeing up some horsepower, and also getting rid of a little heat. Catless downpipes on their own, combined with a tune to account for it, only nets another 20 or so ft.lbs of torque. Peak HP stays about the same but the freer flowing exhaust allows the turbos to spool up faster, reaching that peak a few hundred RPM sooner than before. It is important to note that downpipes and intakes should be installed together, as one without the other doesn’t do much. Intake, exhaust, intercoolers, and tune will yeild about 200HP and 200TQ over stock. This is an incredible gain. Most people run the Scorpion intakes. This setup used 4 conical filters mounted in the engine bay. The design is definitely a compromise and sucks a lot of hot air at low speeds but unfortunately, there isn’t much for a better option. At higher speeds (30mph+) they actually get a fairly decent cool air charge.