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Engine Management Systems
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Engine Management Systems

Nick Czerula

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$300

Talent:

*****

Tools:

ECM flash tool, supplied with software

Applicable Models:

R52 MINI Cooper Convertible (2007-08)
R52 MINI Cooper S Convertible (2007-08)
R56 MINI Cooper Hatchback (2007-11)
R56 MINI Cooper S Hatchback (2007-11)
R57 MINI Cooper Convertible (2009-11)
R57 MINI Cooper S Convertible (2009-11)

Parts Required:

DME flash tool and software

Hot Tip:

Use this info to better understand your MINI R56 engine

Performance Gain:

Fuel economy and performance

Complementary Modification:

Upgrade DME software

MINI R56 engine management systems--an overview

MINI R56 cars (2007 and later) are equipped with a 1.6-liter, 4-cylinder engine with digital engine management systems called Digital Motor Electronics or DME. The engine control module (ECM) in these systems is programmed with software for the control of fuel injection, ignition and other functions. BMW DME systems comply with second-generation on-board diagnostics (OBD II) standards.

The table below summarizes engine and Siemens engine management systems used in MINI R56 cars:

Model, Years

Engine

Cooper

2007: 2010

N12 normally aspirated, double VANOS, Valvetronic II (118 hp @ 6000 rpm)

2011:

N16 normally aspirated, double VANOS, Valvetronic III (121 hp @ 6000 rpm)

Cooper S

2007: 2010

N14 turbocharged, single VANOS (171 hp @ 5500 rpm)

2011:

N18 turbocharged, Double VANOS, Valvetronic III (181 hp @ 5500 rpm)

John Cooper Works (JCW)

2009:

N14 turbocharged (208 hp @ 6000 rpm)

Engine control module (ECM)

The engine control module (ECM) is mounted in the electronics-box (E-box) at the right rear of the engine compartment. The ECM has a total of 138 pins divided into 3 main electrical harness connectors.

Fuel supply, fuel injection

An electrically operated fuel pump, located inside the fuel tank, supplies high-pressure fuel [approx. 3.5 - 5 bar (52 - 73 psi) depending on engine] to the engine fuel rail. The fuel rail in turn distributes fuel to the electronically actuated fuel injectors.

The ECM meters the fuel output of injectors using pulse width signals. It varies the pulse width based on input signals. Inputs to the ECM include:

¦ Air intake volume using mass airflow sensor signal.

¦ Ambient and coolant temperature signals.

¦ Accelerator pedal signal.

¦ Crankshaft and camshaft position signals.

¦ Knock sensor signals.

Fuel in the normally aspirated engines (N12, N16) is injected into the intake manifold (red arrow).

In turbo engines (N14, N18) fuel is injected directly into the combustion chamber (red arrows).

Intake system (normally aspirated engines)

N12 and N16 (normally aspirated) engines use Valvetronic components to control engine load. Valvetronic, taking the place of throttle control, varies valve lift using an electric motor and separate cams and intake rockers for each valve. This results in better engine breathing, lower emissions and higher power output.

The throttle housing is used as a back up and also to create a slight amount of intake manifold vacuum for crankcase ventilation and fuel tank evaporative loss canister purging.

Intake system (turbocharged engines)

Intake air is compressed in the turbochargers using power from the exhaust stream. The air becomes hot due to the compression. It is then routed to an intercooler, which acts as a heat exchanger, thus cooling the compressed intake air. This air is then ducted to the intake ports.

In the N14 engine intake system there is an electronic throttle body, which meters the air depending on driver demand. In the N18 intake the throttle is kept wide open during engine operation. Throttle function is performed by the Valvetronic system, which varies valve lift using an electric motor and separate cams and intake rockers for each valve. This results in better engine breathing, lower emissions and higher power output.

Variable camshaft timing (VANOS)

MINI R56 cars are equipped with ECM-controlled variable camshaft timing or VANOS. The system uses engine oil pressure to adjust camshaft timing, offering the following advantages:

¦ Increased power.

¦ Higher low end and medium speed torque.

¦ Improved idle and fuel efficiency.

¦ Elimination of external EGR plumbing (internal EGR).

¦ Quicker warm-up and lower emissions.

Two variants of the VANOS system are used (photo shows VANOS solenoid being removed):

¦ Single VANOS adjusts intake valve timing only in 2007: 2010 MINI Cooper S with the N14 (turbocharged) engine.

¦ Double VANOS operates independently on both intake and exhaust valve timing in the N12, N16 and N18 engines.

Throttle control, idle control

Only the N14 (turbocharged) engine uses an electronic throttle housing (red arrow) to control engine load (however, all engines are equipped with an electronic throttle housing), speed and idle. Models with the N12, N16 and N18 use Valvetronic technology to control throttle function and idle. Idle speed is not adjustable in any of these systems.

Ignition and knock control

The ignition system uses one ignition coil per cylinder, each coil mounted above a spark plug. The ECM using an ignition spark "map" controls spark timing. Spark timing is not adjustable.

The ECM receives the top dead center (TDC) signal from the crankshaft sensor (also called the engine speed or reference sensor). The TDC signal is then used as a reference time for the firing of fuel injectors and spark plugs. The ECM also receives signals from the camshaft sensors. These signals indicate when cylinder 1 is in the firing position (rather than valve-overlap position) and also exactly how the VANOS system is altering the valve timing.

To prevent engine damage in case of adverse conditions or poor fuel quality, knock (detonation) sensors are mounted on the engine crankcase. These are microphones tuned to the frequency of engine knock and communicate such knock to the ECM. The ECM can respond to these signals by changing (usually retarding) ignition timing at one or more cylinders.

Exhaust manifolds and oxygen sensors

N12 and N16 normally aspirated engines are equipped with conventional exhaust manifolds. As required by the OBD II standard, two oxygen sensors are installed, one ahead and another behind the catalytic converter in the middle exhaust pipe.

In the N14 and N18 engines, the exhaust manifold leads to a turbocharger and then to a catalytic converter with a precatalyst and a post-catalyst oxygen sensor.

Fuel Injectors Fuel in the normally aspirated engines (N12, N16) is injected into the intake manifold (red arrow).
Figure 1

Fuel Injectors Fuel in the normally aspirated engines (N12, N16) is injected into the intake manifold (red arrow).

Fuel Injectors In turbo engines (N14, N18) fuel is injected directly into the combustion chamber (red arrows).
Figure 2

Fuel Injectors In turbo engines (N14, N18) fuel is injected directly into the combustion chamber (red arrows).

Intake System Intake air is compressed in the turbocharger using power from the exhaust stream.
Figure 3

Intake System Intake air is compressed in the turbocharger using power from the exhaust stream. The air becomes hot due to the compression. It is then routed to an intercooler, which acts as a heat exchanger, thus cooling the compressed intake air. This air is then ducted to the intake ports (red arrow).

Intake System In the N14 engine intake system there is an electronic throttle body, which meters the air depending on driver demand.
Figure 4

Intake System In the N14 engine intake system there is an electronic throttle body, which meters the air depending on driver demand. In the N18 intake the throttle is kept wide open during engine operation. Throttle function is performed by the Valvetronic system, which varies valve lift using an electric motor and separate cams and intake rockers for each valve. This results in better engine breathing, lower emissions and higher power output.

VANOS Two variants of the VANOS system are used (photo shows VANOS solenoid being removed: red arrow): Single VANOS adjusts the intake valve timing only in 2007: 2010 MINI Cooper S with the N14 (turbocharged) engine.
Figure 5

VANOS Two variants of the VANOS system are used (photo shows VANOS solenoid being removed: red arrow): Single VANOS adjusts the intake valve timing only in 2007: 2010 MINI Cooper S with the N14 (turbocharged) engine. Double VANOS operates independently on both intake and exhaust valve timing in the N12, N16 and N18 engines.

Turbocharger Only the N14 (turbocharged) engine uses an electronic throttle housing (red arrow) to control engine load (however, all engines are equipped with an electronic throttle housing), speed and idle.
Figure 6

Turbocharger Only the N14 (turbocharged) engine uses an electronic throttle housing (red arrow) to control engine load (however, all engines are equipped with an electronic throttle housing), speed and idle. Models with the N12, N16 and N18 use Valvetronic technology to control throttle function and idle. Idle speed is not adjustable in any of these systems.

Ignition System The ignition system uses one ignition coil per cylinder (red arrows), with each coil mounted above a spark plug.
Figure 7

Ignition System The ignition system uses one ignition coil per cylinder (red arrows), with each coil mounted above a spark plug. The ECM using an ignition spark "map" that controls spark timing. Spark timing is not adjustable.

Knock Control To prevent engine damage in case of adverse conditions or poor fuel quality, knock (detonation) sensors (red arrow) are mounted on the engine crankcase.
Figure 8

Knock Control To prevent engine damage in case of adverse conditions or poor fuel quality, knock (detonation) sensors (red arrow) are mounted on the engine crankcase. These are microphones tuned to the frequency of engine knock and communicate such knock to the ECM. The ECM can respond to these signals by changing (usually retarding) ignition timing at one or more cylinders.

Exhaust manifolds and oxygen sensors N12 and N16 normally aspirated engines are equipped with conventional exhaust manifolds.
Figure 9

Exhaust manifolds and oxygen sensors N12 and N16 normally aspirated engines are equipped with conventional exhaust manifolds. As required by the OBD II standard, two oxygen sensors are installed, one ahead and another behind the catalytic converter in the middle exhaust pipe. In the N14 and N18 engines, the exhaust manifold leads to a turbocharger and then to a catalytic converter with a pre-catalyst and a post-catalyst oxygen sensor.



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