What is good tuning and what is cliché ...? When they hear the word "tuning", many will immediately think of roaring sports exhaust systems, screeching tires or drivers with gold chains. But “proper” tuning is on a completely different level! It starts with lowered bodies, darkened windows, new aluminum rims and everything that can be called individual. But SAFE! Absolutely in the trend are chassis that can be controlled electrically and allow countless adjustment options partly via mobile app. And right after that come the new rims that have long since not only had to be larger but are often installed as an ultra-light forging variant. This is recognized by the manufacturers, and so almost every major supplier not only provides the vehicles but also a comprehensive repertoire of accessories.
Spoilers, underrun protection, adjustable undercarriages, large complete wheels and optional performance enhancements have also been available directly from the factory for some years now. But it goes without saying that these components are tailored to mainstream customers and have little to do with individuality. So components must be from third-party suppliers! However, it is important to ensure that these accessories are not readily accepted by the police, TÜV, Dekra & Co. test centers or insurance companies. So you should inquire in advance what you are allowed to and what is not. What use are tens of thousands of euros for a conversion that is ultimately not allowed and can be properly entered !?
Inspection centers and police check the components on request
The corresponding test centers and sometimes even the police offer the possibility to check the desired tuning part, whether it is allowed or not. Normally there are not even any costs for this! And of course everything depends on the scope of the planned modifications. For example, if you want to tint the rear windows, a general operating permit (ABE) or the EC operating permit, which always has to be carried with you, but saves the expert opinion and thus the entry in the vehicle documents, is usually sufficient. However, one should keep in mind that an ABE is not generally free of registration. This is only a parts certificate and you should read it exactly whether the named component is subject to registration or not.
Expert reports and individual approvals cost money
Often, however, an expert must examine the conversion and ultimately lose weight. This is almost always the case when a completely new suspension is installed, a wheel / tire combination of a third party is desired or a sports exhaust system (including modified catalysts, downpipe etc.) to the vehicle. But also the installation of several tuning parts all of which have an ABE must be assessed by an expert if these parts can influence each other (eg new rims + spacers, steering wheel + chassis, etc.). After all, it may be that various parts in combination DO NOT work together and cause problems.
big topic: chip tuning
A very important chapter is chiptuning. By means of electronic intervention directly on the control unit or optional additional box, the engine management can be changed so that more power is generated. Basically, the installation of such components expires the operating permit because the changes can affect noise and exhaust emissions. Other components such as the clutch, the drives or the transmission are also affected. The demonstration including the associated documents with the expert is therefore essential to be on the road. Do not forget the topic Warranty which usually expires on the part of the manufacturer in a performance increase by a third party.
- the conversion must be in accordance with the Highway Code / Road Traffic Licensing Regulations
- Each tuning part can be checked by official testing agencies or the police for permission
- Check certificates before conversion (do not buy tuning parts without certificates and documents)
- minor changes are usually feasible without expert opinion by an expert (if General Operating Permit (ABE) or EC-type approval is available and this is stated therein)
- larger tuning measures must be assessed by an expert and then accepted (approx. 70 - 90 euros per acceptance)
- Tests with identical tuning parts may be necessary
- several conversions with ABE components must be approved by an expert
- Chiptuning must always be removed
- Inform insurance
Of course that had not been the case. Our tuning magazine has tens of thousands more tuning reports in stock. Do you want to see them all? Just click HERE and look around. Or are you particularly interested in our tips, TÜV, Dekra & Co section? Then the following excerpt is definitely the right one, isn't it?
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