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  • Writer's pictureEddy

Super Power-Up: Hondata Jailbreak Day ⚡️

Welcome back to another installment of the SuperBlog. Last weekend, Hondata was in town for their Jailbreak tour. Tuning wasn't in my immediate plans for the FL5. But since they were coming by, I decided why not. And after less than a week with their 91 octane base map, I'm glad I did.


Hondata Jailbreak Tour Schedule 2024 - April Schedule

4/7: Las Vegas, NV

4/14: Dallas, TX

4/15: Austin, TC

4/20: Woodstock, GA


What is Hondata?

For those not in the know, 'Hondata modifies standard Honda engine computers (ECUs), adding features and expanding the capabilities of the ECU (e.g. for forced induction). These modifications are available either as a reflash, or a fully tunable system.' Think - Civic with laptop. Their software allows you to tune your Honda or Acura to go faster and do cool things. And in general this benefits both stock or modified cars.

The Jailbreak Tour is setup for folks that want to get their ECUs unlocked and/or flashed by Hondata directly. For newer cars like the FL5, the ECU has yet to be cracked and requires you to physically send it in for benchtop unlocking. This can be inconvenient as you'll be without a car for a bit and is potentially risky, because you know how shipping is. Hence - the Jailbreak Tour! They are also offering a 20% discount on their jailbreak + flashpro package if you register, so another incentive there.

Regardless if you are getting a jailbreak or not, I'd highly recommend this event. Lots of Fl5 Type-R's and DE5 Type-S's in attendance. But also FK8s and some other cars too. It basically turned into a Honda/Acura meet. The vibes were great, and I was able to meet a bunch of cool people. I don't see alot of FL5/DE5's in the wild, so it was awesome to connect.

Trust the Process

One pro-tip is to get there early. The process is pretty straightforward, but it takes about 20 mins per car. We had 20+ cars signed up for service. So getting in early and on the list ensures you can get the work done first and then hang out at your leisure.

The Hondata guys were awesome. They had their equipment set up under a pop-up tent and efficiently were knocking out the cars. Super friendly and chill dudes. Shoutout to Kevin (@itskevzter) for the nice chat about German cars while he flashed my FL5 (he owns an m340i and I have an S4).

What about Warranty?

Tuning a car still under warranty is a business decision you will have to make. Under the Magnuson-Moss Act in the US, in order for the dealership to deny you warranty service they would need to prove that the aftermarket part is what caused the malfunction. If something happens to your suspension, and you haven't touched it, you are likely OK as far as warranty. Anything powertrain related though, you are going to have a tough time. That's not to say it will be impossible to get warrantied on anything motor/transmission related if you are tuned. But it wont be easy.

Even if you flash back to stock, newer cars are much more sophisticated and store indicating values such as a flash counter or boost pressure data. Any of these can be pulled up if the dealer suspects anything. To take it a step further, newer Audis for example, are plugged in during routine service for general info. But during this scan it will automatically and permanently 'TD1' flag your vehicle in their system if ECU tampering is detected. In summary, know what you are getting into.

My stance is the risk on the FL5/DE5 is pretty low. The FK8 has been out for a while and our cars are largely based off that previous platform. It's well known what major issues exist with the motor (nothing alarming), who the reputable tuners are, and what power levels are safe for the car. Just be smart with what OTS tune or tuner you go with.

Overall Impressions

If you are on the fence, I say full send! The 91 octane base map from Hondata is a nice improvement over stock. Approximately 30hp and 30 lb/ft per their website, and you can definitely feel it on the butt dyno. I opted for their 'stage 1' pops and bangs and it's fun to use. They have 3 levels by default (Integra type-S, Stage 1, and Stage 2). I may bring it down a notch to the ITS style burbles as I feel that suits me and my AWE exhaust better. But it is nice being able to turn it on or off completely with the drive mode selector.

With that said, this is only the tip of the iceberg. There other features to play with, like their multi-tune function (allowing switching of different maps on the fly). And I have additional bolt-ons pending install. To be honest, the base maps from Hondata will be a gateway drug for most of us. I'm looking forward to a proper tune in the near future and sharing that experience in another SuperBlog ✌🏼.

📸: @freshFL5, @tnazt33

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