RB26 S13 – ECU Decisions

A lot of people will ask why I went with this as my ECU, here’s a rundown of what made me get it.

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So as you know, I’m trying to build the car for Queensland Matsuri in October this year. With less than 12 weeks now, I want everything to go smoothly.

I researched ECU’s for weeks, going over every detail possible. Comparisons in price, features, ease of use, extras, experiences, feedback, service, basically everything you can think of I accounted for.

My top choices were the MoTec M800, Haltech ELITE 2500, Link G4 Xtreme (I have a Link G4 in my 180sx) or the old trustworthy Apex’i Power FC D-Jetro.

Obviously if money wasn’t an issue, the most popular choice would be the MoTec.

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I found no downside with the M800 apart from the high cost for the extra functions. For example if you want a fancy form of Anti-Lag or certain controls over boost, it’s an extra feature that you need to buy from Motec. While I would LOVE to have one of these, there was no way I could afford it in time.

Onto the next option.

The Haltech ELITE 2500

Elite2500

I’ll be honest, I’ve never been that impressed by Haltech ECU’s. I don’t hate them by any means, but I haven’t had much to do with them. So as you can imagine, I knew nothing about them. The Elite 2500 looks like an amazing ECU with quite a few cool features and a slightly smaller price tag compared to the Motec. I’ve also heard numerous good things about their flying lead kit, but again like the Motec, I couldn’t quite afford to go for it.

Option three was something a little more familiar.

Link G4 Extreme

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If you have seen my 180sx, you will know I have a Link G4 Storm in there running the CA. It’s an amazing ECU, controls everything I need and hasn’t caused me any problems. Out of the top three, the Link was the most affordable while still offering a massive feature list. It can run everything I want with the option for a few other things that might have been used in the future.

So why not just get one for the S13? Well I had to go back to the whole thing about not having much time left. I didn’t want to have to worry about getting a new ECU wired in and hoping it would go on the dyno without any problems.

This is where the Power FC comes into it.

Yes I know it’s a hundred years old and is well outdated compared to the others, but it will work for now. To be completely honest, I didn’t actually want to go for a Power FC because of the limitations it has. I know they are a well proven ECU that can run even the most insane setup, but I don’t want an ancient piece of technology running my new car.

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At some point I would love to move over to a new standalone ECU like the ones above, but for meantime I am going to run with the Power FC and see what it’s like. While I am a little disappointed I didn’t go for a MoTec, Haltech or Link ECU, I’m happy I didn’t have to put up almost $3000 for one.

As I write this, I have exactly 78 days until I need to unload my car off the trailer ready for Matsuri so. Now that the ECU decision is out of the way, I can concentrate on the rest of the car.

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