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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
INTRODUCTION



I purchased a 2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia 2.0L TI Q2 approximately 3 months ago and enjoy making mild and tasteful modifications in order to enhance the performance of cars. Part of that enjoyment for me is the rigorous testing of performance enhancements to determine their exact impact on the vehicle performance. In this article I am testing the JB4 from Burger Motorsports.



THE PRODUCT:


I ordered the off the shelf JB4 for the Alfa Romeo from the BMS website with the Bluetooth module for gauges, datalogging and on the fly map switching.


https://burgertuning.com/products/alfa-romeo-jb4



INSTALLATION:



Installation instructions are available through the BMS website and are straightforward and relatively simple. There are three connections. The two map sensors are intercepted and the OBD2 port is accessed in order to tap into the CAN BUS. The only deviation from the basic instructions worth noting here is that I chose not to run the OBD2 wire outside the vehicle and rather fished it through an easy to access grommet in the firewall. This took literally 2 minutes of time. Very simple. Here are photos of where I accessed.

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TESTING CONDITIONS:



The comparative acceleration tests were measured using a Dragy 10Hz GPS performance meter. This performance meter is unparalleled in acceleration testing meters when it comes to accuracy, reliability, and price. I’ve used this meter for well over a year on multiple platforms with dozens of runs at certified tracks and found it to be accurate within .03 in ET and within .7mph in trap to certified track results. Other comparos have found it be be as reliable as the once king of the hill VBOX performance meter used by professional publications for testing.



All of the following acceleration tests used in this article comparing stock versus JB4 Map 1 acceleration data were performed in the same test location, traveling the same direction (to account for slope and wind variables), and in the same density altitude. Density altitude plays a HUGE role in performance of the vehicle. A change in DA of 2000 feet can account for 2 to 3 mph in 1/4 mile trap speed or, in other words, 25 to 40 horsepower at the wheels difference in what the car can produce. Consequently, all stock runs and JB4 Map 1 runs during this test were performed within 30 minutes of each other and registered the same temperature of 73 degrees Fahrenheit with the DA registered for all runs between 940ft and 945ft.

Starting Intake Air Temperature was also controlled for being certain the car was not heak soaked for any one run.


ACCELERATION DATA:



The following are measures of POWER in acceleration. Since this article is specifically exploring power difference between the stock vehicle and the JB4 Map 1 equipped vehicle I will exclude such superfluous data such as 0-60 times and 1/8th mile and 1/4 mile E.Ts. Those data sets are confounded too much by launch technique/traction and do not accurately measure POWER.



40-100mph acceleration


STOCK RUN 1 - 10.03 sec
STOCK RUN 2 - 10.03 sec


JB4 MAP 1 RUN 1 - 9.57 sec
JB4 MAP 1 RUN 2 - 9.43 sec



60-130mph acceleration



STOCK RUN 1 - 19.48 sec
STOCK RUN 2 - 19.59 sec


JB4 MAP 1 RUN 1 - 18.34 sec
JB4 MAP 1 RUN 2 - 18.21 sec



1/8 mile trap speeds:



STOCK RUN 1 - 81.69 mph
STOCK RUN 2 - 81.53 mph


JB4 MAP 1 RUN 1 - 82.70 mph
JB4 MAP 1 RUN 2 - 82.98 mph



1/4 mile trap speeds:



STOCK RUN 1 - 102.18 mph
STOCK RUN 2 - 102.18 mph


JB4 MAP 1 RUN 1 - 103.73 mph
JB4 MAP 1 RUN 2 - 104.08 mph



POWER UNDER THE CURVE:



While acceleration data tends to show how the car behaves when accelerating at 10/10ths in full out wide open throttle driving such as at a 1/4 mile track or road course, it doesnt necessarily depict very well how the car will feel driving around town giving various “squirts” of the throttle darting ahead of traffic or merging, or powering out of an on-ramp, etc. For this we look at “area under the curve.” This is the vehicles power curve from idle (or more realistically from 1500rpm) to redline in any given gear. Often this is depicted on dyno charts.



Here, we’ll depict this power under the curve using datalogs of boost in 3rd gear from 1500rpm to redline. A dyno chart of torque and horsepower will somewhat mirror this boost curve so looking at these charts give us a great idea of our power under the curve. Both the stock and modified Giulia 2.0L have great power under the curve from under 2000rpm with tremendous torque all the way to the relatively conservative redline of 5750rpm (6000rpm in manual mode).



Stock Giulia Boost Curve:


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JB4 Map 1 Boost Curve:


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You can see the relatively small turbo does run out of steam up top in the powerband allowing for an increase in the upper rpm band of 2-3psi of boost but down low there is tremendous torque improvement with upwards of 5psi in increased boost.



DATALOGS:


For those car nuts who are interested in the intricacies of the stock vs modified outputs as it relates to variables such as boost, timing, AFR, knk, and wgdc, here are the logs:


STOCK RUNS:


https://drive.google.com/open?id=1wpLRcS5qPi8EGyk5FDfrZCla8crXOEL-


https://drive.google.com/open?id=1wup8sAY_pVDyKP63Itw7Vw9IHYaqSmV3



JB4 RUNS:


https://drive.google.com/open?id=1x2-HdJySEyfwi7DUiq0ISrSVJq_bxZ-D


https://drive.google.com/open?id=1xAU-3Lf8yF8iGMYXse-rmxsuZHyQ6ynm




DRIVEABILITY:


Of course acceleration data doesnt necessarily tell the whole picture of how the car “feels” on the road particularly under part throttle day to day driving. Im pleased to report that the driveability with the JB4 is as smooth as stock. There is no jerkiness or uneven acceleration feel that some may recall from trying other piggybacks in the past. It feels just like OEM but with more torque.



AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT:


Unfortunately MAP 2 was not usable. MAP 2 is a slightly higher performance map than MAP 1 and whenever I went wide open throttle with MAP 2 it invoked a limp mode with multiple warning errors (service engine, elect throttle control). No testing could be performed on this map due to this.

EDIT: Vehicles like mine that underwent the w05 recall experienced map 2 issues. Terry at bms has updated the firmware to v5 and so far this looks very promising. I experienced no limp mode and great power. Retesting this updated map 2 will follow


I’d also love, love, love to see Burger Motorsports create a MAP for this device that disables electronic stability control. This would be a game changer IMO.




OVERALL IMPRESSION:

Im extremely pleased with this purchase in that the JB4 provided a reasonable power increase with no compromise in driveability. If we look at the datalogs and the acceleration data we can see that on that given day of testing, in those conditions the JB4 added around 50ft/lbs torque to the wheels down low in the powerband and tapering to approx 20hp up top in the powerband. Probably my main reason for choosing to keep this upgrade is the extremely useful digital gauges and datalogging functions the JB4 provides. I do enjoy testing modifications as part of my automotive hobby and its likely ill go on to test other piggy backs and hopefully flash tunes as well and I’d like to keep the JB4 on the car even in stock mode so that I can continue to utilize the gauges and datalogging functions. This is a fantastic benefit of this device.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks bud! I didnt want to include this in the review because i just did this run this morning under different conditions so its not comparable but its the best ive ever done in this car. Its better than the car did in negative 1500 da conditions so pleased...

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Excellent post. I personally think dedicated summer rubber and a JB4 are the best value upgrades for the 2.0L and probably more than enough performance car for most people on most roads. Disable traction control and give me the updated center console, and I'd be good for a long, long while.
 

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93 octane?

Also you can display the "ecu psi" along with the total boost so you can easily see the JB4 added boost
 

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I especially like how you routed it via the grommet in the firewall, much better than the supplied instructions.

I had a JB4 in my E90 BMW 335i N54 (3.0TT) w/6-speed and loved it. It also had cool features like automatically disabling traction control, clearing codes when running aftermarket downpipes or wheels without TPMS. It also had an adaptive Map which would revise boost targets based on multiple criteria.

With that said, I will likely get a JB4 for the Giulia but going to drive it stock for a bit longer. I bought my car a few days before the pandemic and as such have only driven about 100 miles.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Thanks fellas.

Yes only shell vpower 93 octane goes in this car.

I could experiment with e30 like i did for the b9 audi s5 where we get great improvement because that ecu requests upwards of 20 degrees of timing and just retards as needed. It takes advantage of e85 very well. Im not seeing that on the alfa. Seems to run crap timing with no retard so adding octane may not do much without a flash tune to take advantage of it

Heres an acceleration run...

 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
I'm suprised by the issue with map 2.... Any codes stored? I've never had an issue.
Not sure what this means. Unfortunately i had to clear it bc i was stuck in limp mode or else i would have read it with my reader when i got home

It very reliably goes in limp mode though. I suspect these cars have so many different software versions and the digital SENT sensors are so darn sensitive that its just not quite mapped right for this sw version

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Limp mode datalog...


Video of it

 

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Fantastic Review.

All of this is important info but I think this is statement is one that makes Jb4 better than anything else on the market.

"Of course acceleration data doesnt necessarily tell the whole picture of how the car “feels” on the road particular under part throttle day to day driving. Im pleased to report that the driveability with the JB4 is as smooth as stock. There is no jerkiness or uneven acceleration feel that some may recall from trying other piggybacks in the past. It feels just like OEM but with more torque. "

My exact sentiments. For me it's not about the top number. It's about drivability. I have also tested 3 others and realized the drivability was completely lost with those other piggybacks. Jerky and uneven. Made it really hard to drive well. They all lost power too quickly since they just increase fuel and boost, they jerk, run up the power/RPM and then they loose power, quick. Not smooth power throughout the power band. The low end power/tq with JB4 is completely missing in the others. It was difficult to shift manually in a smooth manner. I might be getting old but I could not shift manually fast enough sometimes because the boost was too quick and jerky. I ran the others for a very short time and concluded they are all the same, not really any difference in the boxes that do not run off Canbus. They just cannot compete.

Great review and data. I have been running JB4 and extremely happy with it, only happy customers that have installed them.
 

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Hopefully BMS can get map 2 sorted for you, but very encouraging that even map 1 has impressed you so much.

Hmmm, very tempted to pull the trigger on one of these. Car get its first service in 2 weeks, might be a good 1st birthday present for the G!

Mine being a Euro 6 2019, can anyone see any issues with the JB4 on a euro spec car?
 

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Not sure what this means. Unfortunately i had to clear it bc i was stuck in limp mode or else i would have read it with my reader when i got home

It very reliably goes in limp mode though. I suspect these cars have so many different software versions and the digital SENT sensors are so darn sensitive that its just not quite mapped right for this sw version




Limp mode datalog...


Video of it

Had the limp mode one time with the Seletron box I tested. Went away after some driving. I believe it's just a safety feature which cannot be removed with a piggy back. Only a flash. Can someone clarify? I have not had this issue in map1,2 with the Jb4.
 

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Not sure what this means. Unfortunately i had to clear it bc i was stuck in limp mode or else i would have read it with my reader when i got home

It very reliably goes in limp mode though. I suspect these cars have so many different software versions and the digital SENT sensors are so darn sensitive that its just not quite mapped right for this sw version

View attachment 97971


Limp mode datalog...


Video of it


Def post this in the n54tech forum... The code is for the wastegate Control and your AFR is lean. Would need Terry's input
 

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Fantastic, meticulously detailed and systematically explained post. I like the attention to detail and the real world input. Good to know there are others more OCD on measuring the benefit than I am. Keep it coming.

I too think on the 280hp variant which is the only one you get in USA, there is not much to gain by flash tuning when compared to a good piggyback like JB4..on my 200hp Giulia however , flash tuning took a lot higher where a piggyback could not.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks.

Im going to mess around with map 6 this week and create a custom map thats mire agressive than map 1 but that hopefully does away with triggering limp mode
 

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Nice review, 60-130 runs were greatly improved! I'm sure Terry can help you with map 2. I love it on my QV. I notice map 2 runs much better with a few gallons of E85 blended. Thank you for the clean install pics too!
 

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Excellent write up and good runs. Showed a good improvement overall. I’m actually shocked though by the 60-130 number. I would of thought a 2.0 would of been faster. Like 13-14 seconds. I guess upgraded turbo would be the answer. Seems like it’s pretty maxed out.
 
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