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Thread: 2015 firmeware update detuned?

  1. #1
    Senior Member buzzny's Avatar
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    Exclamation 2015 firmeware update detuned?

    I told my 2015 Abarth Automatic in for a cosmetic warranty repair and during the repair that did a firmware update. (last week) It was named as a diagnostic improvement update". As soon as I started it I noticed a difference:
    1. Takes more cranking to start
    2. When letting off the accelerator it is not an immediate lowering of the RPM's. Slower wind-down.
    3. The exhaust is much quieter. Much harder to get it to ""pop".
    4. Improved gas milage.
    5. Reduced fun factor


    Boo-Hiss.
    Went back to the service center to see if they can revert back to prior flash. No.

    So, after reading in this forum about some 2015 Abarth's blowing a hole in the block near #1 cylinder makes me wonder if Fiat intentionally is detuning them right now until they find what the issue is with the 2015 engines. I'm thinking that the additional cranking is to build up oil pressure and the other symptoms are to lower engine temperature.

    I REALLY hope is is only a temporary firmware change other wise I'm dumping the car. BTW- Fiat in't new to me I've still have my 2012 500c lounge that just turn 30k miles on it. Real happy with that.

    Has anyone else experienced this yet? That put a sticker on the inside of the hood showing the firmware update.

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    I don't have any details about the firmware update, but it's intention is to improve cold starts. My start-up has improved and I noticed that the car has to re-learn and adapt all over again . I believe that this is what you are experiencing since...well, I had the same update. I picked up a tech authority subscription so I could see details and they extended the flash all the way from the early cars to early production 2015s.

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    Senior Member buzzny's Avatar
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    The service manager pulled up the info about the update and besides diagnostics improvement he mentioned that it also has something to do with the temperature on the O2 sensor. I've driven the car for about 150 miles with several on/offs of the ignition switch so far, I would think that if there was a relearning curve it should have adapted by now. Doverosx, was your flash done about a week ago or less? I'm just wondering if this is a more resent update than what you had done. - Thanks for the info.

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    Quote Originally Posted by buzzny View Post
    The service manager pulled up the info about the update and besides diagnostics improvement he mentioned that it also has something to do with the temperature on the O2 sensor. I've driven the car for about 150 miles with several on/offs of the ignition switch so far, I would think that if there was a relearning curve it should have adapted by now. Doverosx, was your flash done about a week ago or less? I'm just wondering if this is a more resent update than what you had done. - Thanks for the info.
    My flash was done on Monday of this week. As far as start-ups go, I always wait for the buzzers and such to settle down before cranking it over and I did notice less "go" initially but that's about right with the re-learn process. The ECU is very adaptive so you need to "lay into it" for the ECU to fess up timing/boost on its maps....that said, we won't know for sure unless someone peeks into the ECU file.

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    Senior Member alex500a's Avatar
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    Hard to believe they would detune the car since many are running tunes producing much more power than stock reliably.
    2015 Abarth
    Koni Yellows, H&R Springs, GFB DV+, EC FMIC, EC V4.1 Intake, Wilwood BBK Front & Rear, AEM Water/Meth Injection, E+D P0/P1 Tune, Neu-F Exhaust, 4c Coils

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    Senior Member buzzny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alex500a View Post
    Hard to believe they would detune the car since many are running tunes producing much more power than stock reliably.
    Tell me about it. Now I'm missing my Subie. BTW alex500a, did you read this thread:" 2015 abarth engine blew a hole in the block"

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    Senior Member alex500a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by buzzny View Post
    Tell me about it. Now I'm missing my Subie. BTW alex500a, did you read this thread:" 2015 abarth engine blew a hole in the block"
    Yea just read it now. That thread lacks a pretty significant amount of information and 99% is speculation.

    Would be interesting to see what sort of power the car makes on a dyno now vs prior to the update. I imagine this will be the easiest way to tell if there is a difference.
    2015 Abarth
    Koni Yellows, H&R Springs, GFB DV+, EC FMIC, EC V4.1 Intake, Wilwood BBK Front & Rear, AEM Water/Meth Injection, E+D P0/P1 Tune, Neu-F Exhaust, 4c Coils

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    Well, I have a 2015 Abarth Automatic also and this doesn't sit well with me, at all. Am I worrying about nothing, or something here? One person lists some effects, another says no problem, the car will learn it back. Are they taking away something that I paid for??? Is the exhaust sound really less noticeable? Improved mileage is nice. Perhaps I just won't ever take it in for a service so they can't do the firmware update. I hope I'm worrying about nothing here. Not losing any power, are we?

    Appreciate it if others would join in here, thanks!



    edit: curious about the poster that blew a hole in his block. Was there a resolution? Fixed under warranty? Go to trial? Thanks.

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    Senior Member buzzny's Avatar
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    Saypat: I suppose when you did take it in for service you could ask to be informed before the flash was done.

    Yes, maybe I am gun shy about this after reading about others blowing a hole in the block after such a short time of ownership of a new car. FYI - I had a 2009 Subaru that had a issue known by Subaru corporate with the late 2008 manufactured 2.5 liter engine. After throwing a bearing on #3 ( which I found out was common internationally with the late 2008 built engines). Subaru really busted my chops on this with only 53K on the vehicle. That's another story.
    For now I parked the Abarth, I have other vehicles to use. I posted this information to see if other have experienced it and also to make Fiat aware of my situation (yes, service and Sales are aware of this from me). Before you ask, I'm not a Noob with performance cars and do realize when something is different and doesn't relearn it's settings. Maybe I got a bad flash or maybe there really is an issue starting to show up with the 2015 Abarth engine builds. Just keeping everyone in the loop. Does anyone know if the flash number that is written on the sticker placed under the hood the actual flash version number or a number calculated from my vehicle VIN and flash rev.? I could post that number to see if it matched anyone else's recent flash update.

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    Member Scottie.Do's Avatar
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    I've had my 2015 Abarth for about 8 months now and haven't had to take it in for anything yet. This make me VERY nervous about letting them do any updates. I wonder if I can decline a update...? I know I'm due for an oil change soon so if I take it to the dealer for my "Freebie" I'll be sure to ask about all of this.

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