We take a look at how much this piggyback ECU improves the interceptor 650’s performance
Race Dynamics is a Bengaluru-based company that makes a host of performance-related devices, and they sent us their Powertronic piggyback ECU for our long-term Royal Enfield Interceptor 650. Having spent a month with it, here’s what it’s like.
The kit includes the Powertronic box itself and a switch that lets you change between two pre-programmed power modes. We also received an upshift-only quickshifter that works with the Powertronic box, but is sold separately. I got the help of Race Dynamics’ Mumbai distributor, Race Smith Auto, to have the kit installed, but if you know your Interceptor’s basic wiring layout and have the basic tools, you can do this yourself. The Powertronic wiring comes labelled and all you have to do is unplug the OEM sockets for the injectors, spark plug and throttle position sensor and plug-in the corresponding Powertronic connectors. The box is compact, but it takes the space that’s normally occupied by the toolkit.
The Powertronic box comes with two preset modes – M1 and M2. Mode 1 increases power and torque minimally and intends to smooth out throttle response. But the Interceptor is already very smooth in this regard and you’ll be hard-pressed to feel the difference.
The effects of Mode 2 are much more apparent. The power delivery is crisper and a tad more immediate. More importantly, the system worked in both modes without any major hiccups. Only during our performance tests did we notice a couple of instances during the roll-on runs where we whacked open the throttle and the fuelling couldn’t keep up, making the bike sputter without moving forward. The fuelling has otherwise been flawless so far.
Race Dynamics claims that its system works by varying fuel injection through the rev band and the extra power comes without a significant drop in efficiency. In our tests, the Interceptor returned 33.89kpl on the highway and 22.79kpl in the city in Mode 2, in comparison to a very similar 34.36kpl and 23.86kpl in stock.
I found the quickshifter the most enjoyable. Shifting from first to second is a bit clunky, but the rest is smooth and effortless. The quickshifter’s sensitivity can be adjusted with the RTune software that also allows you to download other ECU maps onto the Powertronic box – a tutorial video for which will be out soon.
Our performance tests reveal a clear improvement in acceleration, all around. This doesn’t come cheap, though; the Powertronic box costs Rs 22,000, and it’s another Rs 13,000 for the quickshifter. Unfortunately, the latter won’t work in isolation.
This is a product directed at performance enthusiasts and it may not be what every Interceptor customer is after. What will have wider appeal though, is an aftermarket exhaust, and we’ve already got one to be tested and reviewed in next month’s issue. Exhausts tend to work much better with remapped/aftermarket ECUs and the PowerTRONIC box may well be more of an asset here. We’re excited to see how that pans out. Stay tuned!