Tuning & Remapping
We have vast experience enhancing the performance and economy of all vehicle makes and models over the years – we know what works and what doesn’t! We are independent from the other tuning companies so can recommend the correct modifications to suit your vehicle. Only the hands-on expertise of our superb technicians gives us the confidence to state that we can make your vehicle run and perform better.
Tuning is an oft-used word and is also an oft-abused term! In the good old days a man with a box full of tools and a good ear would tune your engine to get better performance, this usually involved replacing or adapting several components to get more pulling power or a quicker response. The introduction of electrickery under the bonnet has taken the tuning out of the hands of the DIY mechanic and put them in the hands of someone with a laptop computer. But not al ‘Tuning’ is what you would want. Most of what the small ads in the back of the magazines are offering to do is just fool the brain (ECU) into thinking the engine is cold so it throws more fuel into the cylinder. Simple? Wrong! Just like fresh paint on a rusty chassis might look good for a while it’ll come back to get you later.
At Nene Overland we will never just offer you a quick bang for your buck. We want to find out exactly what it is you need the vehicle to do. Being a bit quicker pulling away from a junction may not help you tow that heavy load or do anything for your fuel economy. We can adapt the tuning and performance package to suit your needs. And it really is a package, we’re not just going to add a magic box to your wiring loom we’ll advise you of the options for brakes, exhaust, gearing, ignition and induction (air intake) all of which add to the mix.
Too old? Never!
If you believe everything you read you’d think that the only way to tune a vehicle’s engine involves a laptop and ‘magic’. That’s wrong too. There are plenty of ways to encourage your pre-ECU lump into harnessing a few more horses for your daily commute. Obviously there’s no point expecting rocket-car performance from something that is 20 years old and has already been around the planet half a dozen times but it’s not impossible. Better induction, better exhaust, bigger intercooler, even just replacing old and tired pipework can help! Talk to us, tell us what you have and we’ll advise you of the best options.
But first, this:
Tuning your engine and adding a fancy sports exhaust is not going to do anything if you skimp on everyday servicing and maintenance or opt for the cheapest bargain-basement lubricants and forget to replace the air filter. As we mentioned above it is all part of the mix for a perfect recipe. Let us take care of everything for you. We can give your vehicle a thorough healthcheck, carry out a full service so that you know everything is as good as it can be and only then look at the tuning and performance options. See our Servicing options (link to servicing page) but obviously if you’re happy that the servicing is up-to-date we will tune your vehicle.
Land Rover Engine Conversions
If we cannot satisfy your needs with a few well-placed tweeks how about changing the game altogether and opting for a completely different engine?
The Land Rover Defender is blessed with being a sizeable unit with a great engine bay into which we can drop a whole host of engine options. These have all been carefully chosen and researched and, in some cases, have undergone extended R&D periods lasting many years. We are now confidently able to offer you a range of options that will deliver between 300bhp and 600bhp.
For the Puma-era Defender the best starting point is the 5-cylinder 3.2 TDCI. It is from the same stable as the standard 2.2 TDCI that Land Rover fits at the factory but with an extra cylinder, more than twice the power and offering V8-beating performance while keeping the legendary low-down diesel torque.
If you would like to switch to petrol and demand the ultimate performance then we have a range of options available from the 5.0 litre V8 from a Ford Mustang right up to 6.2 litres that will turn your Defender into a real ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’ with similar performance to a Range Rover Sport.
Obviously it is not as simple as transplanting one lump for another we need to look at the gearbox, exhaust, suspension and brakes to complete the package. But we have all that covered too!
Changing the gearing on a vehicle is often an overlooked modification when it comes to improving the performance and driveability of a Land Rover Defender. Years ago you were limited to fitting an overdrive – which we can still do, even to the latest Defenders! – but now there is much more choice.
Some people may just need to overcome the hard work that that a heavy clutch pedal requires. We can fit systems with better servo-assistance to make the clutch much easier to operate or we could fit an automatic gearbox.
Not all autos are the same, there’s no point trying to mate a 30-year-old gearbox design to a modern engine. We only use gearboxes that are up to the job. And we don’t just replace the ‘box, how it looks inside the vehicle is just as important. The gear-shifter needs to be easy to operate, conveniently located and aesthetically fits with the rest of the interior and trim. We look after all of this and the end result gives as factory-fresh a look as possible.
An engine creates exhaust gasses, lots of it. We all know this. But did you know that the way those gasses are ejected and the path they take are just as important as the way the air gets in?
Fitting a big-bore, straight exhaust is not always the answer. Some engines need a certain amount of back-pressure in the exhaust system to give optimum performance. Our many years of carrying out engine conversions and performance tuning has equipped us with the best knowledge available. We know what will work with your particular vehicle and level of performance modifications so can advise you on the best options.
If you’re going to be propelling a two-ton vehicle along the road you’re going to want to be confident that it can stop too. Bigger discs, heavier duty calipers and better quality pads all help, as do the brake lines themselves. Like everything else we do it is the mix of components that give the best result. We can install a system that not only works on the track but also won’t be bothered by you driving off-road or through the mucky stuff, not all ‘performance’ brake packages will react kindly to being driven through a river! Ask us for advice.
Improving a vehicle’s performance isn’t just a matter of getting more power from the engine, how it handles on the road and how it reacts in a tight bend when you try to use that power is just as important. We have spent many years researching and building the ultimate handling systems for Land Rover Defenders. You can be confident that you won’t go into a bend testing the legendary 45° tip-over angle, our suspension packages will keep you on the level and smooth out even the harshest of rough road surfaces. Ask us for advice.
Please note: Your vehicle may need to have the latest ECU updates installed before any remapping or tuning can be carried out. We are able to do this for most makes of vehicle for a small additional fee. Please also understand that installing performance upgrades and ECU remapping may invalidate manufacturer’s warranty and you will need to inform your insurer of any work we carry out. We work closely with insurance companies and are able to give you a full breakdown of the work that should be acceptable to your insurance company. We can also recommend a good alternative insurance provider should you have any difficulty obtaining suitable cover for your modified vehicle.