McLaren MP4-12C Aftermarket ECU Tune Testing

February 17th, 2014

McLaren-MP4-12C-Tune-ReviewWe were at the last StreetCarDrags event on January 26th, 2014 at Palm Beach International Raceway with two McLaren MP4-12Cs to do some testing on an aftermarket ECU tune from Evolution Motorsports.   The tune consists of a ICM (Intelligent Engine Control Module) that intercepts a few of the MP4-12C’s sensors to increase boost pressure and adjust fuel pressure to increase horsepower from the stock 616 HP to 659 HP.  Cost for the Evolution Motorsports ICM is $5,250 which works out to $122 per horsepower.

Both the stock McLaren MP4-12C and the one modified with the tune were running the same Toyo R888 tires and were raced back to back by the same driver, in the same lane at Palm Beach International Raceway within just a few minutes of each other.  This was done to eliminate driver,  track prep and weather differences.  Weather was favorable with a temperature of 65 degrees and a Density Altitude (DA) of 325 feet for both runs.  In order to gather a more complete comparison beyond the 1/4 mile we raced both cars past the 1/4 mile mark to reach 150 MPH and had a VBOX on board to record the results.

Test Results

Stock McLaren MP4-12C
Tuned McLaren MP4-12C
0-60 MPH
0-100 MPH
0-150 MPH
60-130 MPH
1/4 Mile
10.27 @ 135.55 MPH**
10.19 @ 136.8 MPH**

* Includes 1 foot roll out
** Actual timeslip data from track

0-150 MPH Graph from VBOX


McLaren-MP4-12C-Tune-Review-timeslipsAs you can see from the results the tuned McLaren is quicker and faster than the stock McLaren by a small margin and is indicative of a 30-40 horsepower gain.   In a real world race it’s around a 1 car margin through the 1/4 mile as the cars were less than 1/10 of a second apart.  Of course that assumes a perfectly even start which is hard to come by, as you can see in the last video below, the stock McLaren beat the tuned McLaren to the finish in a heads up 1/4 mile race due to a slightly better reaction time.

While there are not many other tuning options out there, we did reach out to Fabspeed who are specifiying a 80 horsepower gain to the wheels on their website with their tune, however, they responded back that they were not able to provide us with a unit to review.  We’re also contacting another vendor, Zeusflash, who are also tuning the MP4-12C and hope to review their tune soon.

Check out the videos, pictures and timeslip data below:

Stock McLaren MP4-12C Pass

Tuned McLaren MP4-12C Pass

Heads up run with both cars


  1. Joe says:

    I’m curious – a mid-pitched whine starts about mid-track (both cars), and increases in volume as they finish the run. …what’s causing that noise? Aero? It sounds too low. The tires, maybe?