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MG MGF Technical - Icon unit and no power increase

I fitted a Superchips icon unit to my 1.8i at the week end. Gave the car a good run and must admit, I could feel no power increase. I was expecting to feel at least something, more throttle response, slightly quicker etc. I have other mods like K&N and SP exhaust, which made a little difference. But the icon unit none that I could feel. Before I phone up Superchips and let them have it, I thought maybe some of you out there have also fitted one of these units and could give some response.


Hi Steve,

Has it been programmed? I believe the standard program is only set up for the unmodified F. I had to have mine done after the basic mods and again after the camshafts.


Hi Nick

I delt with Super Chips direct. They pre programmed it for the 1.8 and siad that I would get about 6-7 bhp. The car goes into Moto-build at the end of the month for some fast road cams (You got me hooked) and they will change the setting but I feel that how do I know that the unit is not faulty etc.

IMO and after some reading of postings on this and other BBSes, I think that fitting such a thing must go together with good programming. I don't believe this is a DIY job.
Driving your modified F with a standard chip-setup could (!!!) damage your car (IMO).

yeah :-)
Dirk Vael

I relise the potential of pre igintion and holes in pistons, due to too advanced timing. That is why I am going to get it re programmed by Moto-build when thay fit the cams and in the mean time it is disconnected. I just wanted to find out if the unit makes only a little difference or should make a lot. The setting if for the 18.i.


I have had an Icon unit now for around 2 years. It is sitting on my desk, waiting to be fitted & it will stay there until either...

a) I become convinced that it does what it is supposed to do & that it will not damage the engine in any way.

b) Someone wants to buy it off me!

After 2 years of reading this board & talking to other enthusiasts i remain unconvinced. Let me know how you get on as i am extremely interested in the results.


Scarlet Fever

I just wonder if all the blown engines were using 98 octane fuel...
Bruno V.

Scarlet Fever,

Hi, my ICON has been running for 20 months in various modes. Firstly, before any other modifications were made, I installed the unit with the basic program. Then after fitting the cold air intake and K&N panel it was re-programmed by superchips, And finally after installing the Piper cams at which point Moto-Build altered the unit accordingly. Overall, since it has been fitted i've covered 10,000 miles with no problems. I do intend, however, to try out a completely new MEMS in the near future in order to have a play with the fuel map. I'll keep you posted.


Steve wrote:

>>. I just wanted to find out if the unit makes only a little difference or should make a lot. <<

You will not get *big* differences from tweaking the ignition timing (which is what the Icon does).

Scarlet Fever wrote:

>>a) I become convinced that it does what it is supposed to do & that it will not damage the engine in any way.<<

It is supposed to allow the ignition timing to be changed. Changing the ignition timing may damage your engine. Hence if it's doing what it's supposed to do then it could damage your engine, depending upon how it's mapped. If it's mapped with the same ignition settings as the MEMS then (a) it won't do any damage, and (b) it won't make any difference. Advancing the ignition at some points in the rpm/load space might yield some gains, but *does* reduce the safety margin between a happy engine and piston-eating detonation. Using higher octane fuel mitigates this to an extent.

Mike Bees

Do yourself a favour:
Wanna have more power?
Buy a different car!

Well, I have an ICON chip laying around aswell, and I sell it to anyone, for any price, I just wanna get rid of it, too much bad memories. Costed me a fortune to buy, blew 2 head gaskets with it, fried 1 complete VVC engine and all the time I had to pay because of this chip. SP, morally responsible for all this since they told me the day it was installed they would "take care of it in case there was some trouble", never paid me 1 back for the total sum of 5,000 it costed me (chip + 2 HGF + 1 VVC). At the end Mr. Palmer himself offered me a payback of about 650 if I sent the chip back, and 2 days later before I send the chip I read here on the BBS they were out of business... crooks...
So if anyone wants to experiment, for any price (not 1 please, more something like 25 or so) I'll sell it immediately, with wiring schemes and plugs etc.

ps: mine was 95 RON all the time
Dirk Vael

I have disconneted it now. It will be remapped when I get the engine tunned but not too much advanced, so it pinks. The guys at Moto-build told me that Superchips mapping is too agressive and use thier own mapping, then have one on their demonstartor and have fitted hundreds to Elises with no concerns and if you have high lift cams fitted the timing can be advanced to suit., and that is why I have brought it otherwise I would not had bothered. I will get the Car tested on the rolling road when it is done.

This thread was discussed between 13/03/2000 and 14/03/2000

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