The Miller Alpha-N system is the only 100% Factory ECU controlled “MAF-less” engine management system for early model M cars. Unlike competitor’s products that require a piggyback to intercept and convert the signal; or worse, a completely new standalone after-market engine computer, the Miller Alpha-N system was developed to be fully plug and play and utilize the factory ECU for the entire calibration method.
To achieve the stock ECU control of an Alpha-N system we have recalibrated and recoded key aspects of the ECU’s operating functions and tables, how they are used and how they interact with each other so that the stock ECU can run the car as if it left like that from the factory. This ensures great performance not only at wide open throttle, but for idle and partial throttle as well.
When using competitors piggyback based systems in parallel with the stock engine management, you are sacrificing performance and control. Other systems out there which use a piggyback to intercept signals, make their changes and send that to the factory ECU. Sounds simple – and it is. However, you lose signal response by doing so and in an Alpha-N system, signal response is everything. After studying these popular alternatives and watching how the ECU reacts to the information provided by the piggyback controller, we felt there was a superior way to design and implement this management system. Allowing the factory ECU to use an uninterrupted signal DIRECTLY from any given sensor, creating new tables, reconfiguring existing tables and their inputs and how they interact with these tables provides superior performance in drive-ability and tune-ability.
Another thing that these competitors systems cannot offer is full control of the factory tune parameters. These piggyback style systems only allow you to modify fuel. They do not offer you control of ignition timing, RPM limits and idle speeds and so on which actually limits the optimization of your vehicles tune. Don’t be fooled by the statement from competitors products like, “Timing does not need to be changed, a suitable complimentary chip is provided to optimize timing, etc. for your car.” This is simply false.
Sure, you can be provided with a one size fits all timing map but that will leave you power on the table as it must be safe for EVERY car that uses it. Another major thing that many people do not understand is that no two engines are alike. Even if they are built the exact same, they will NEVER perform identically. With an Alpha-N type system, specific car calibration is key to extract the most power SAFELY from the engine.
With the Miller Alpha-N system, you have full control over both FUEL and IGNITION making your engine run at its best performance. The Miller system allows standalone-engine-management-like control and adaptability for your factory ECU which saves you from the time and money spent on essentially starting from scratch.
It refers to an engine management approach that does not have a true load input available for fuel calculation. “Alpha,” refers to throttle angle and “N” refers to Engine RPM. On a typical engine management system the ECU requires a load signal from a metering device. An air flow meter (which is found on this era of BMW’s) a Mass Air Flow sensor, a Manifold Absolute Pressure sensor etc are all devices used by ECU’s to help calculate engine LOAD. Engine LOAD is simply a calculation based on this load signal, RPM and a constant that determines how much air is entering the engine and how much fuel needs to be supplied for that given amount of air. With an Alpha-N system, you do not measure that intake of air so you need to deal with fuel differently. You pre-calibrate fuel requirements based on engine RPM and throttle angle only and use other sensors and correction maps to adjust the fuel required for determined conditions or environmental factors.
The reason someone would want to use this on a BMW M car would be in situations when a massive inlet carbon air box is being used. When your inlet is too large you dramatically reduce signal quality across a load sensor such as a MAF. When you lose signal quality you lose performance and drive-ability. Alpha-N is a great solution to this kind of intake system as it offers excellent drive-ability and much better performance.
There is no one size fits all software for an Alpha-N system and is why the WAR Chip is included in the system package. We have done our best to be able to provide near perfect base tunes to start with, but one must realize Alpha-N systems require car specific refinements to operate at 100% no matter what. The WAR Chip editing software is laid out in a relatively simple manner so the user can massage the tune on their own; if one does not feel comfortable with this, we can help tune your car remotely as well provided you can supply us with the required running data.
We recommend Alpha-N for track use only. With the ability to change your fuel and ignition timing with the Miller Alpha-N kit, you will be able to extract the most power and performance from your engine safely.