4 Cyl. Chip #5: High-Performance code 330HP
Reviewed by Lotus Esprit World

On changing to chip #5, I again noticed a very high idle on start-up, but this settles down once it's been in the Esprit for a runs. I spent a while driving gentle to let the chip bed in. Even then I notice the changes over chip #2, the whole car seemed more eager. A little scary, as you can sense the extra power. After the 30 mile run in, I started to push a little harder to see what difference the chip made. Firstly you notice the torque of chip #3 has gone. The power comes in smoother than chip #3. What you get is huge amounts of power, but spread over the rev range more than chip #3.

You find the boost coming in lower down and harder, but somehow less brutal. Strange I know, but one makes you feel torque, the other power. You get loads of boost from the turbo, which pulls you along at massive speeds. You remember the first time you drove an Esprit and really put your foot down. Well it feels like that all over again. You really feel the power and the boost rises to the full 1.2 bar quickly. Where before the boost is slow to rise and stops at below a bar (0.85), it now rises quickly and easily passes the bar and carries on hard and fast.

Because of the higher boost, I've decided not to test the chip under full throttle until I've fitted a digital boost gauge. Even with around 80-90% throttle the power is heart-stopping. You find it hard to believe that a simple chip can turn the Esprit into this beast. My exhaust was popping and banging and I still managed to spin the rears when a BMW M3 tried it on. Overtaking is easy, but not as easy as #3. You've got the power, but it's like the normal Esprit. You need to be in the right gear. Once you hit the power you've more than enough, but if you're not, you do have to wait a second. Chip #3 gives you the power lower and harder and is much easier for over taking. Maybe actually slower, but easier for the more instance pick-up needed for overtaking.

Chip #5 keeps the Esprit feel as it was, but increases the power like you couldn't imagine. I've added a few performance modification in a short space of time and these added to the chip, have turned my Esprit into a real monster. The Esprit has always been fast, but never felt fast in my opinion. Now it feels like a supercar. Real power. I feel a new clutch will be needed, along with better brakes and suspension to help handle this extra power. With chip #6 still to test, I think a few more mods will need to be added. I'm looking forward to fitting the boost gauge and new rear tires and testing it to the full. Maybe a track day will be needed!

As for which chip I will be using, I'm still not sure. I may try #3 again and then decide, but if you like the Esprits power as it is, but want more power, then #5 is the one to go for. Remember, will this sort of power you'll need to be careful. Both driving and looking after your Esprit. This is no family car with a big engine, your in real supercar territory now! No posers should apply.


4 Cyl. Chip #5: High-Performance code 330HP
Reviewed by Peter

I am sending you this email so you can send it to others that have 
the same concerns I did with the #5 chip. It took me months to 
decide on a chip, going between #2, #3 and #5. I was going to buy 
the #2 chip because I am not rich and breaking the drive train is not 
an option and the #3 chip sounded like it would make the Esprit drive 
like an American muscle car. In addition, I am working with Bush 
dollars and not Clinton dollars so the chips are now too expensive to 
make a mistake. Your reassurance that the #5 is safe helped me decide.
I installed the #5 chip in my 93-94 Esprit last week and it works 
exactly as you said it would. The installation of the chip was not 
completely straight forward. The connectors to the ECU were more 
difficult to remove than it is worth so I removed the MEM-cal with 
the ECU connected. There is plenty or room to work and was the 
easiest part of the job. Once the MEM-cal was out I had to lift the 
old chip to allow me to clip the pins. This is scary since damaging 
the connectors could destroy the whole MEM-cal. After removing the 
clipped leads, everything went relatively smoothly. The next problem 
is installing the chip itself which is a bit longer than the old chip 
requiring me to slip it under the circuit board beside it. Since the 
board beside it has long pins, it can be pushed back slightly without 
breaking the pins. I slipped the new chip in by using the thinest 
valve feeler gauge I had in the tool box as a guide. I was nervous 
about the whole process but everything worked out.
The car runs and sounds smoother, and as I was hoping, it is easier 
to drive in all conditions. Since I am not a collector, I drive the 
car on a regular basis in the city and on the highway. The biggest 
difference is that the car now feels like a modern car, smoother and 
more powerful acceleration with normal throttle use. I find that I 
drive at higher RPM's than before, not because I want fast 
acceleration, but because it runs so smoothly I do not notice. Under 
normal acceleration, the car does not lunge and feels refined, as the 
reviews of the #2 chip suggest, but with more power than the stock 
chip. The high boost was my main concern but as you wrote me, it 
does not kick in unless you floor the pedal. So under normal fast 
acceleration, the boost goes to 0.65 and stays there but still 
accelerates faster than the old chip. Under lower acceleration, the 
boost is actually lower than before even though the car seems to 
accelerate better than before. So my main concern, that the car will 
run at high boost under normal condition is not the case, but if you 
want it one can get it on demand. On back roads, the car now handles 
great in high speed turns since the throttle responds in a linear 
manner regardless of the speed. In conclusion, if one wants an old 
Esprit to feel like a modern Esprit, and not tax the drive train 
(unless you want), this chip is great.