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Discussion Starter #1
I've just been on the phone to Geoff at Hilltop Motorcycles in Leicestershire with regard to having a remap done on my R9 that is currently running a Boosterplug, Akra decat headers, deflap link pipe, and an Akra low silencer without a baffle.

Two options were discussed, a full rolling road tune, or a simple remap/reflash of just my ECU to upload a suitably matched map they already have. Considering the distance, not to mention the weather at the moment, posting just my ECU up would be a whole lot more convenient than a 3.5hr ride in the freezing cold, so I'm undecided as to what to do.

Surprisingly, there's not much of a price difference between the two options, and Geoff reckons that as he's already done loads of R9's already, one of their 'off the shelf' matched remaps will be about 98% as good as having an individual rolling road set-up session on my specific bike.

So what I wish to ask is........has anyone on here sent their ECU (only) up to Hilltop for a remap, what did you think/how did it perform afterwards, and in hindsight do you wish you went for the full rolling road set-up?
 

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I know at least one forum member who went for the posted route.

I did the ride in - ride out and have been extremely happy with the service and end result.

I have before and after dyno charts which I can pm you but I'm not posting them on here because of all the crap comments they attract.
They are in my mind only relevant in a before and after scenario on the same dyno on the same day.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I know at least one forum member who went the posted route.

I have before and after dyno charts which I can pm you
Do you recall who it was, and whether they were happy with the results?

Thanks for the kind offer, and Yes, I'd be very interested in seeing the graphs via PM. Thank You Mr Zanderk.
 

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Do you recall who it was, and whether they were happy with the results?

Thanks for the kind offer, and Yes, I'd be very interested in seeing the graphs via PM. Thank You Mr Zanderk.


I'm sure it was forum member @Bose but he sold his 9T and bought a GS. I seem to remember he was impressed with Hilltop results, he did get his bike dynoed with graphs and posted them on the forum.


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Just make sure you can flash/re-load the OEM tune when you take it to a BMW dealer for service.


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I've just been on the phone to Geoff at Hilltop Motorcycles in Leicestershire with regard to having a remap done on my R9 that is currently running a Boosterplug, Akra decat headers, deflap link pipe, and an Akra low silencer without a baffle.

Two options were discussed, a full rolling road tune, or a simple remap/reflash of just my ECU to upload a suitably matched map they already have. Considering the distance, not to mention the weather at the moment, posting just my ECU up would be a whole lot more convenient than a 3.5hr ride in the freezing cold, so I'm undecided as to what to do.

Surprisingly, there's not much of a price difference between the two options, and Geoff reckons that as he's already done loads of R9's already, one of their 'off the shelf' matched remaps will be about 98% as good as having an individual rolling road set-up session on my specific bike.

So what I wish to ask is........has anyone on here sent their ECU (only) up to Hilltop for a remap, what did you think/how did it perform afterwards, and in hindsight do you wish you went for the full rolling road set-up?
I'm very interested in this, because having read various helpful (and some ,to me, confusing!) posts, I have just decided to go the Remus headers, flapper delete, standard exhaust and Booster plug route. Seeing that you already have the booster plug has given me pause for thought. I am now thinking that the money for the booster plug would be better put towards the Hilltop remap. I have read of someone posting there ECU from the states and being very pleased with the result. Ive recently been up to Brum for wilburs suspension set up, (from Cornwall) Should have carried on to Earl Shilton! I guess I'm looking for confirmation of what Gambo asked; Is 98% good enough?!
 

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I know at least one forum member who went for the posted route.

I did the ride in - ride out and have been extremely happy with the service and end result.

I have before and after dyno charts which I can pm you but I'm not posting them on here because of all the crap comments they attract.
They are in my mind only relevant in a before and after scenario on the same dyno on the same day.
Zanderk, I'd be interested in seeing those charts as well, if you don't mind? Many thanks, in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Just make sure you can flash/re-load the OEM tune when you take it to a BMW dealer for service.
Why do you say that Mr drotor? :unsure:

My bike has just come out of warranty, so having a remapped ECU isn't going to be an issue on that score.

Infact, I'd be much more upset if my local BMW dealer reflashed/reloaded an OEM tune back onto my ECU, so overwriting the Hilltop tune!
How to avoid/stop that from happening is a question I wanted to ask Geoff when I spoke to him, but forgot!! Doh.



Zanderk, Thank you, PM replied to, and email sent.
 

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There's a bit of debate in this. Someone rang around a few dealers and wasn't confident that the diagnostic machines don't automatically upload new versions of the ecu map. So, as long as BMW doesn't release an update you're probably ok. If they do, the dealer might not have much ability to stop the process as it seems to be automated as soon as the diagnostic is started. Again, opinions vary, that is consistent with what my dealer (who I ride with) says the process works. Of course, you could choose to never take it to a BMW dealer, and make sure your local mechanic turns off his internet connection before connecting to a diagnostic machine. Or, retune with a device that stores and can reflash the new map.


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Discussion Starter #14
I'll make some inquiries about possibility of the situation you mention happening tomorrow, both with my local BMW dealer and Geoff at Hilltop.

Going from memory first though, I'm sure I recall someone on here who had a custom map installed specifically asking his dealer NOT to reflash the ECU when the bike went in for service, and the dealer happily obliged. Can't recall who that was though, though I seem to remember seeing pics of a label being taped around the diagnostic plug which stated 'DO NOT REFLASH - CUSTOM MAP INSTALLED' or words to that effect, to make sure the mechanic doing the job knew or didn't forget about the owner's wishes.

Thinking about it logically, absolutely loads of people around the world have remaps done (one way or another) for their vehicles, but if those maps were regularly overwritten by the dealer installing an update at the time of service, I doubt they would be as popular as they are. Jus' my opinion like!

Whatever.........I'll ask some questions tomorrow, and report back the answers I'm given.;)
 

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Hi Gambo,

I emailed you the dyno charts so hopefully they make sense.

I'm sure Geoff will tell you the same as he told me that there isn't an issue with this but I'd be interested to know whether I need to put the same caviat on my ECU before servicing. Like you I think logic dictates that there won't be an issue because of the popularity of re-maps. I went onto the GS1200 forum and read up extensively on this before proceeding and there was plenty of anecdotal evidence from members who had the work done and were still getting their bike serviced by a BMW dealer to suggest it wasn't a problem. That wasn't my main concern incidentally but now I've had it done I'd suggest it to anyone.
Mike bike is out of warranty by April when I'll have my next service so like you I'm not overly-concerned.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yep, email gratefully received, and replied to. Thank You kindly Mr Zanderk, the info was very helpful indeed.


Going on what you've just said, it made me recall there was a some super tricked-up HP2 type boxer (not sure of the exact model) in the workshop of my local BMW dealer back in the summer, and I remember being told by the service manager about all the extensive go-faster mods it had received....which included a custom remap.

Obviously the dealer wasn't concerned about all the go-faster bits, and they weren't bothered that it had a custom map installed either. Likewise, I'd suggest the owner wasn't concerned about his remap being overwritten either, or else it wouldn't have been in there!

Infact, upon the wall behind the main service desk of my local dealership hangs a range of Akrapovic de-cat header pipes for various BMW models. Upon inquiring about warranty and conformity issues when fitting those items, the dealer told me they were actually officially approved by BMW! Now if BMW themselves aren't bothered about people fitting non-standard go-faster bits to their range of bikes, do we as owners need to be unduly concerned?

So going back to the original discussion, I'd suggest as long as the dealer is fully aware there is a custom remap installed and that it's not to be updated or overwritten under any circumstances, then there will be no problem........but as I said earlier, I'll phone and ask some questions for a definitive answer tomorrow.
 

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Hope it works for you. I just spoke to my tuning guy and he believes the same thing, BMW diagnostic machines auto update the ecu map. Only an issue if BMW issues a new map.


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I just spoke to my tuning guy and he believes the same thing, BMW diagnostic machines auto update the ecu map.
My Dealer had a similar opinion but it was that if "the system" found any anomaly (like a flashed tune) it would automatically restore the ECU to the latest spec and may change the ECU's coding so the flash can't be re-installed without triggering an EWS fault.

My R Nine T has been flashed (I have a hand held) but has never been hooked up to BMW's system and my Dealer has never had a flashed ECU connected.

I'm curious, my dealer was curious, but the time available to play with it (for free) is when it's colder and nastier than I want to ride 60 miles in to the Dealership.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
OK Guys, as promised here's an update to what the service manager of my local BMW dealership, and Geoff at Hilltop had to say about the situation of ECU map updates......

BMW Dealer said that when plugged in to the bike, the system will only 'advise' if there is a new BMW map update available to be installed into the ECU, it isn't installed automatically. It is then the decision/discretion of the operator/mechanic whether that updated map is installed or not. So......as long as the dealer knows you don't want any updated maps to be installed into your ECU, then it won't be, as it isn't automatically done. So far so good.

I then spoke to Geoff at Hilltop. He explained that his maps are installed into a completely different part of the ECU than the BMW ones, so one doesn't overwrite the other, and that there are then actually two maps in the ECU. Infact, he said his map is completely invisible to the BMW system, and the only way a dealer would know a non-standard map was installed was if you told them. When questioned what would happen if a BMW dealer was to apply a map update, he also said it would only update the BMW map that was sitting redundant in the ECU, and would not have any effect on his map whatsoever, as BMW simply cannot access the area of the ECU where the Hilltop map is installed. So the long and short of it all, is that it doesn't matter what BMW map updates are uploaded into your ECU, they will not overwrite or have any effect on the Hilltop map that is installed.

So good news all round then.


However, while I'm no expert, common sense would suggest the above info about dealer updates not effecting custom maps is applied to HILLTOP REMAPS ONLY.....as it's possible non-standard maps installed by other sources (hand-held tuning devices, maps from other tuning shops etc) may well apply their maps into an area of the ECU which IS ACCESSIBLE, and therefore over-writable, by the BMW dealer system.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
UPDATE

After speaking to Geoff at Hilltop, and having some brilliant private advice off a member on here (Many Thanks Buddy!) I then felt confident in making the decision to send my ECU up for a re-map.

Not only was I convinced, but my 2012 R1200R riding buddy was also impressed when I showed him the graphs, and so I sent his ECU up along with mine too.

Turnaround was a very quick three days (a day getting there, a day being mapped, a day back), so all I have to do now is refit the ECU using the procedure supplied by Geoff.

The only bummer is I won't get a chance to try out the improvements straight away as my R9 won't be coming out of it's winter hibernation until the end of March/beginning of April at the earliest (yeah yeah I'm now a soft sap of a summer rider in my old age!), so sadly I won't be able to comment on how the motor runs and feels until then. My buddy is in much the same boat, so I won't even have his observation to go on before then.

However, what I can safely comment on, is what a cracking guy Geoff is to deal with. He was quite happy to chat, explain and discuss all of my questions and queries at length on a number of occasions, and then after provided a quick and reliable service. Top Bloke!
 
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