Saturday, February 4, 2023
News Automotive aftermarket software tuners beware!

Automotive aftermarket software tuners beware!

The Justice Department and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has come down hard on a Florida company called Derive Systems, of Sanford, smacking them across the face with fines and fees.

If you love the aftermarket like some us do here at MI, you know that an ECU re-flash (like I just had done to my A4) can significantly improve overall performance and in the process, depending on the selected upgrade, disable automotive emissions controls.

Derive develops and sell software under the SCT and Bully Dog brands which, at least in Bully Dog’s case, is known to be a go-to option for truck-lovers. Derive will have pay a $300,000 penalty and spend some $6.25 million to readjust the products so that it complies with the laws.

While we completely agree that it is wrong to defeat anti-pollution systems, our fear is that this will set a precedent and scare many tuning companies out of business. In my case, my Unitronic update only increased turbo boost without affecting emission controls. In fact, it will lower my fuel consumption by 5 to 10%.

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Matt St-Pierre
Trained as an Automotive Technician, Matt has two decades of automotive journalism under his belt. He’s done TV, radio, print and this thing called the internet. He’s an avid collector of many 4-wheeled things, all of them under 1,500 kg, holds a recently expired racing license and is a father of two. Life is beautiful. Send Matt an emai

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