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Monday, 22 Jun 2009

DPCHIP offers practical pluses for EFI diesel owners after peak engine efficiency

GoSee Captiva diesel on DPCHIP dynolog at Berrima NSW
GoSee Captiva diesel on DPCHIP
dynolog at Berrima NSW

After 11 months of evaluation of the product GoSee believes that there are practical benefits in DPChip diesel power for Electronically Fuel Injected (EFI) diesel engines.

Berrima (NSW) Diesel Service, the company behind DPChip has been working exclusively on diesels since 1956. The DPChip is available for all EFI diesel 4wd's and independently alters both fuel and fuel timing to optimise the entire engine map.

More efficient use of the fuel system and correct fuel timing are important factors not only for achieving the best economy but to control peak exhaust gas temperatures for optimum engine durability.

So a $1,495 plug-in power chip supplied by Scott Leimroth of DPChip at Berrima was fitted to the GoSee Captiva LX auto diesel in July 2008 by Kris Umhauer of Umhauer’s - Solar, Towbars & ARB Geelong, Victoria. The DPChip comes with a five year warranty. There is a 30-day no risk money back guarantee, 24/7 support  hotline and new vehicle & driveline coverage.

At that point the AWD Sports Utility Vehicle from Holden performed to standard flywheel specifications with 110kW @ 4000rpm and 320Nm @ at 2000rpm according to Holden.
$250,000 DPCHIP AWD Dynolog
$250,000 DPCHIP AWD Dynolog

Now after the DPChip dyno evaluation the results are 136Kw and 381Nm at 2570rpm. (90kmh). This gives power from 78kmh to 82kmh when the Captiva changes to 3rd gear and reaches max Kw at 84kmh right through to about 102kmh when it starts to drop off. The overall benefit is a 22 percent increase in power.

The improvement in the Captiva's towing ability is significant over the 1875km GoSee used in a towing test on the Hume Hwy between Belmont, Victoria and Berrima NSW.

We were fortunate with windless towing conditions. GoSee used the same two drivers for this intense phase of the evaluation.

During the overall 11 month extended DPChip evaluation by GoSee the Captiva has been driven by the same driver in extended towing and single-vehicle use.

Like many reports GoSee gets about fuel and performance enhancing products our GoSee driver said that he felt the Captiva had more power on the first run with the DPChip fitted.

GoSee believes that it is human nature to take a positive view of personal buying decisions so we set out to rule out the feel-good-factor and report the hard numbers.

DPChip shares the GoSee reality check approach to information on the GoSee site for users to help them make informed decisions about their needs.
Andrew Leimroth settles Holden Captiva on the AWD dynolog
Andrew Leimroth settles Holden Captiva on the AWD dynolog

Scott Leimroth of DPChip said today that - "The DPChip really is a performance device and we would not recommend it purely for fuel savings as users may be disappointed, however we do find most people get some sort of fuel saving".

"It is almost impossible to put an exact figure on the fuel economy with the DPChip as there are so many factors involved", he said.

"The type of vehicle, the individual vehicle setup, the terrain and traffic conditions and the fuel quality all influence fuel economy".

"The biggest influence on fuel economy is the driver’s right foot. From our experience the DP Chip will give you around a gear to a gear and a half better which means you will have to change down less, particularly when going up long hills or towing up hills".

"The extra power also means you will not have to put your foot to the floor to get going and you will get to speed quicker so you can let the foot off sooner", Scott Leimroth said.

"It is no magic bullet, however, so if you still drive foot to the floor you will still use fuel. Essentially if you drive conservatively these things will mean you can get some good economy benefits".
DPCHIP dyno spins GoSee Captiva diesel to read-out speed
DPCHIP dyno spins GoSee Captiva diesel to read-out speed

"We have found up to 10 per cent better economy on many vehicles we have fitted. Driving style really is the deciding factor", Scott Leimroth said.

Pre DPChip figures for the GoSee Captiva Lx auto diesel:

Typical highway speed single loaded vehicle -

Tues 11 Dec 2007 - Here are figures checked against GPS for a GoSee staff conference between Geelong/Canberra trip with the GoSee Captiva LX diesel on the Hume and Barton Hwys.

The Holden Captiva had 4 persons + luggage 1 way / 3 persons + extra luggage return.

Weather 23 - 35 degrees. Strong head winds for the first two hours of the return trip.

AC operating.

Speed: 100 - 112 kmh.

Fuel Used: 150.8 litres

Kms travelled: 1,743

Cost of fuel: $228.40

Ave $1.51 per litre

Ave 13 c per km travelled

= 8.65 litres/100 kms travelled

= 11.6 kms travelled / litre

= 32.8 miles per gallon (formula- litres/4.545=gallons, kms/8x5=miles)

Ave speed 85 k/h

Time (incl driving around Canberra x 3 days) 20.4 hrs
DPCHIP spins Dynolog numbers on Holden Captiva
DPCHIP spins Dynolog numbers on Holden Captiva

Towing Range: Fuel tank capacity is only 65 litres. Which gives a towing range of only about 400km in give and take conditions, but we have achieved 720km with the Captiva alone from a tank with the red low fuel light on.

This was a combination of city/freeway conditions with cruise control set at 100kmh, air-conditioning off and sunroof closed.

Fuel consumption: 8.7L/100km (Captiva alone).

Fuel consumption towing: 14L/100km.

CO2 Emissions: 233g/km

Max Power: 110kW @ 4000rpm

Max Torque: 320Nm @ 2000rpm

Here are some driver reports on the DPChip in a series of driving situations during the extended evaluation by GoSee after fitting the DP Chip -

July 2008:

We have the Chip fitted to the Captiva. Quite painless.

At this stage it appears to have increased performance via acceleration.

We have not driven out of the city this week to gauge torque on hills etc, but that will happen soon

Same with fuel consumption. Previously normal city-country mix driving returned 10 lt per 100km.
Exhaust gas analysis on the Holden Captiva
Exhaust gas analysis on the Holden Captiva

DP Chip figures indicated kW increase of 24% from 110 – 136 & 19% nm increase from 320 - 381

Unfortunately Umhauer’s Geelong 4x4 & Towbar Centre, who fitted the chip, were unable to perform a dyno test as the Captiva is All Wheel Drive and there are no 4 wheel dynos in Geelong.

They did however hook up the laptop for optimum performance figures and tuning and agree that setting 5 as preset by DP Chip was most suited to this vehicle.

July 2008: First fill since installation

365 kms – 120 from Frankston/Geelong, then the rest driving around Geelong trying out the thing resulted in 8.65 lt/100 a considerable improvement on what I would have expected of 10.

Then to Dandenong & return, the trip meter is on 7.9, I will be back in Melbourne at the weekend, so another freeway drive should not change things much. Had a fierce head wind home (to Geelong) today. The trip meter has always showed about .5 more used than actual.

The fill this morning was a thrashing drive seeing what difference the chip made to performance over the last 5 days.

Today’s drive was up to 100 on freeway where possible, driving safely in the wet and reasonably economically with head wind home.

At this stage I would expect a week of city only commuting to reduce from say 12 to 10.
DPCHIP at home Berrima NSW
DPCHIP at home Berrima NSW

I can feel the difference. DP said it would give me another 1 ½ gears. Being auto, that is a bit hard to judge – on gentle throttle it changes up at 2,000 revs which is about 20, 40 & 60 kms, under full throttle it still changes at a max of 4,000 revs, but I haven not looked to see if the speed has changed there in each gear.

I did notice that I didn’t need as much accelerator to maintain a constant speed and this reduced the overall revs especially driving at 80 kms, you can stick it in 5th and cruise along at 1,500 revs rather than in D waiting till you got to 100 kmh for it to change into 5th automatically.

I think I can confidently say that it gives a 1 lt/100 km improvement, which in this case is 10% saving in fuel. In this fill @ $1.868 would equate to $10.45 over 618 kms, so that is about $17.00 per 1,000 kms at today’s prices.

The Captiva feels much smoother and gives it a lot more get up and go. I think the extra power shows up before the turbo kicks in, making acceleration feel more even, although there was never much turbo lag in the first place. I like it

Typical result vehicle only run January 2009:
Holden Captiva LX diesel DPCHIP unit
Holden Captiva LX diesel DPCHIP unit

Geelong – Rochester via Bacchus Marsh, Lake Eppalock & return. Ave speed 82 kmh 6 hours driving. Distance 492 kms. Air Con used returned 9.4 lt/100 or 30 mpg.

April 2009 typical result towing GoSee Jayco Discovery 1500kg loaded pop-top:

Towed the GoSee Jayco Discovery about 900 kms at the weekend – 36 degrees then stormy wet thunderstorms 14 degrees. Captiva tows well, average for whole trip 15.7 lt/100 (a bit more than I expected, but mostly with AC on and 95 kms upwards on the freeway).

January to April 2009:

Here are the spreadsheet figs over four months for the Captiva. There is a trend. Also note it is due for a service. That usually improves fuel economy quite dramatically.

Total litres used: 538.5. Cost: $590.01. Avg. litres per 100km 11.53. Avg. km a litre 8.67.Ang mpg 24.50. Avg cost per litre $1.10.

GoSee Towing with DPChip:

Overall GoSee rates the Captiva auto diesels Sports Utility Vehicles towing performance as eight out of 10 with a Coromal Excel E541 tandem caravan of about 1300kg Tare weight.
Scott (r) and Andrew Leimroth check Captiva model prarametres
Scott (r) and Andrew Leimroth check Captiva model prarametres

On test we felt the Captiva had plenty in reserve and would handle a loaded 1700kg caravan well.  Fuel consumption towing: 14 litres per 100km in calm weather and flat road conditions.

With a 1254kg Windsor Rapid RA 471 on the Captiva's custom-fitted Hayman Reese towbar. Towing in winds to 50 knots. About 16 litres per 100km.

Towing GoSee Jayco Discovery 36 degrees summer heat and thunderstorms. Average fuel consumption over about 900km 15.7 litres per 100km.

GoSee does not recommend extreme weather towing. If the choice is there go another day. 

Holden numbers -
The Captiva diesels use a new 2.0-litre, common rail, 16-valve SOHC inline four-cylinder intercooled turbo diesel engine that produces 110kW at 4000rpm and peak torque of 320Nm at 2000rpm. This compares to 169kW and 297Nm (at 3200rpm) for the petrol models.

It is important to note that Holden rates the automatic and manual Captiva diesel maximum towing capacities differently.

The Manual Captiva Diesel is rated at 2000kg and the automatic diesel 1700kg (as tested). The V6 automatic petrol version is rated at 2000kg.

DP Chip Diesel Power (Auto Performance)

Tyacona, Old Hume Highway

Berrima NSW 2577

Phone: 02 4877 1022

Fax: 02 4877 1239


For more information
contact: Garth Morrison
Editor Go See Australia and Go See New Zealand Directory

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