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DIY ECU tuning for Motronic 1.8 (960)

Thought id post up in a separate thread my M1.8 adventures, My 240 has some 1995 960 goodies in it, mainly the engine, trans and EMS - See: https://ozvolvo.org/discussion/2389/julians-240-t5/p1

If the parts were from an M4.4 car (S90/V90 OR V/C/XC70) Then tuning would be as easy as loading up a pre made XDF, ADX, Bin and having a poke around in Tuner Pro.

Unfortunately Motronic 1.8 has been largely ignored, mostly because the cars it came in are generally not modified, and when they are, are usually gutted out for a standalone setup like a MAXX, Nira, VEMS or whatever is most popular at the time in Sweden.

So, along with some help from the helpful folks over on TB, Broke4speed has done a lot of work when it comes to tracing tables and maps. He has since moved on from the project, but has offered to aid me in mapping out the rest of the bin to a point where its usable.

Link to tb: https://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=337500

I have a few resources that Ill be collating over time, wiring pin outs, diagrams etc that I used to aid in my swap that may help others in the future.

This 55-pin ECU Connector wiring diagram helped me out a heap, the volvo greenbooks are good, but some things arent so clearly labelled
Ive tried to link it, but the domain is dead - I was smart enough to take a screenshot B)

More to come, Im hoping to have have a T6 bottom end to play with in the near future, which will require a little tweaking on the ECU side of things ;)


  • I just shoved a ms1v3 board inside of the 1.8 case and called it a day....

    Interested to see how you go with this
  • GhettobirdJulian @Ghettobird Melbourne - SE Suburbs
    Im poking for info from some of the popular swedish chip vendors, the age of the ecu makes it a fair bit simpler than m4.X, as it would seem - most places only modify the fuel and ignition maps, which have already been clearly defined in the bin by others before me.

    Id like to see if injector constants can be traced in the stock bin, they may not even need to be! then it should be as simple as modifying the fuel map and ign map to suit boost!

  • GhettobirdJulian @Ghettobird Melbourne - SE Suburbs
    edited October 2018
    Distracted myself from things Im supposed to be doing today, finally got the M1.8 running on an Ostrich.

    Case off, easy stuff

    Right there in between the two boards, you do NOT need to seperate the boards to get the chip out, a screwdriver and a small pair of pliers is more than enough to pull the chip retaining cover off

    Save for incase, dont chuck this as its the only thing thats gonna save you if you cant get the Ostrich running (apart from another ecu)

    28P connector, nothing crazy, This is the stock cable that actually came with the Ostrich


    This was a little tricky, getting the cable in without bending pins OR ripping any components off. Possible, but tricky

    Make sure you are set to 28/32, then 28 on the right side. Forget and your ignition relays will do funny things :s

    I decided to cut a nice little slot in the side, and sand every fekkin edge on this finger slicing tuna can of an ECU cover

    It runs like stock :)

    Now to work out how to data trace and clean up the XDF a bit

    Im very happy that Its all worked out so well, with any luck I should be able to identify the important tables in the BIN and send the car off to Trent for a good working over when its ready for some BOOOST :)
  • Very interesting Julian!
  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    This is relevant to my interests.
  • has any progress been made on the tuning and refined base map?

  • GhettobirdJulian @Ghettobird Melbourne - SE Suburbs
    edited January 7

    No progress, Its pretty dead end at the moment as the other guys who actually have the skill to trace the maps out have pretty much thrown in the towel in favour of far better options.

    It is possible, but thoes who know are keeping all of the relevant info under wraps to be able to keep on selling chips and custom flash tunes for these ecus

  • If i get a eprom reader cant we just get the bins off the oe chip

  • GhettobirdJulian @Ghettobird Melbourne - SE Suburbs

    Ive got one myself and yes, you can.

    But working out where all of the maps and info are located is the next issue.

    The problem being is that there is no complete XDF or reference file for the maps publically available. The data is there, but how it all corresponds is the hard part

  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    edited January 7

    I always wonder how people work that out.

    I presume that a trained eye can spot the tables by the numbers, and then verify exactly what they do on a simulator?

    Starting from scratch would be incredibly tedious, but not actually all that difficult?? Maybe a bit of work to unravel the overlapping functions, and some work in identifying specific functions...

    Or am I dreaming?

    Edit: Easy for me to talk about when I have a shitload of time on my hands, but I also know that once I am back in the real world that I will have no time...

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