Project TTS:SF - APR Stage I ECU Upgrade and KW Coilovers
byon 07-24-2010 at 01:58 AM (10632 Views)
words: Jason Crouch
photos: Jason Crouch and Cole Kelly
When it comes down to finding a shop to help continue a project, choosing carefully will save you a world of hurt. As Project TTS:SF has begun to pick up cadence, it was time to get more acquainted with a local tuner and the choice seemed natural. After a recent accident left the hub of one corner of the TTS stripped, Streetwerke’s own Flying Finn helped figure out a fix that saved us a ton. Finn didn’t charge for the re-thread. He just took care of the problem and in doing that earned longtime loyalty. So when APR announced their Stage 1 flash, I knew I’d just shoot down to Streetwerke for an ECU makeover.
Going over the numbers on the APR website, this ECU flash on 91 octane gas netted the car an additional 50 HP and all in a simple 20 minute download! Gotta love that.
The power bump translates very nicely in the real world as well. The TTS came out of the process with big, noticeable power and smoothed out delivery. The only problem with a mod like this is that it makes you hungrier for more. The TTS went from 265HP to 313HP on 91 octane out here on the west coast, and for those fortunate enough to have regular access to 93 Octane you’ll see your power jump to 322HP or a 55HP bump. And if race fuel is an option, APR’s 100 octane map weighs in at a solid 94HP jump over stock up to 355HP…. and that is before any additional hardware is added!
In order to perform the photo shoot for this installment of Project TTS:SF I drove out to the Salton Sea down near the Mexican border. Over a half decade ago this was heralded as “the next big resort area” of California. By the 1960’s the dreams of “the Californian Riviera” were for the most part finished and most of the remaining beaches and towns that dotted the landscape around the sea were closed or in complete disrepair. By mid-2009 the guillotine had dropped and all the beaches were permanently closed due to state park budget cuts. Not to revel in the misfortune of others, but the opportunity was ripe to get the car out onto the crushed sea shell beach and shoot some photos and footage that you can see here.
This roadtrip was made especially fun with the TTS’ newest mod - KW Variant 3 coilovers. The highway heading out to the Salton Sea has a few good sweeping turns. I didn’t see any CHP out there during an hour and a half of driving time, so I was able to put it down pretty hard with this new suspension and it worked out better than expected. That “connected” feeling you get from a set of well made coil-overs just can’t be replicated, even from a piece as sophisticated as Mag-ride. I ran these in my last Audi and having the ability to dial in the dampening and perfect the stance was pertinent to the success of this build in my opinion. It rides slightly firmer than stock, but the responsiveness is 100% worth it.
Now, if you remember the stats on this car, you’ll recall that it came with Audi’s magnetic ride control, a system that is not easy to upgrade. You can imagine then how excited I was when I found a blurb on a German auto sport website that KW had created the “Audi TTS Elektronic Kit” (#685 10 124) which is for the most part a set of ultra high quality aluminum encased resistors. These resistor pods plug in to the car’s magnetic ride plugs and send a signal to the ECU that the Delphi system is indeed still attached to the car. This means no check engine lights.
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